OHL Power Rankings: Week 9 – Nov. 27, 2023
The top-10 teams in the OHL are so closely matched at this point in the season, each new week of Power Rankings is a shake-up of sorts it seems. That theme runs through the Week 9 edition, as the Saginaw Spirit are on top for the first time all year while the Soo Greyhounds and Guelph Storm also surged after successful weekends.
Saginaw Spirit – up three spots to #1 this week
What’ll get you into top spot on the OHL Power Rankings? Well, a 10-game winning streak should do the trick. The Spirit continued rolling along, defeating Flint, Sarnia and Niagara last week to improve to 14-7-0-1 after a slow start to the season. Vegas Golden Knights prospect Matyas Sapovaliv filled up the scoresheet with 11 points (4-7–11) last week. The Spirit face a good test as they set out to defend their #1 status this week, facing Sault Ste. Marie in a home-and-home with top spot in the division on the line.
Soo Greyhounds – up four spots to #3 this week
The Hounds enjoyed a successful trip through the golden horseshoe, scooping up five of a possible six points with an overtime loss in Erie before defeating both Brantford and Mississauga to improve to 15-7-2-0. Marco Mignosa (3-3–6) and Jordan D’Intino (3-2–5) both had strong showings offensively.
Guelph Storm – up six spots to #4 this week
The Storm were unstoppable last week, going 3-0 with home wins over capable opponents in North Bay and Kitchener before defeating Sarnia on the road on Sunday afternoon. Saturday’s 8-6 win over Kitchener was particularly thrilling as captain Braeden Bowman buried a hat-trick on Pink in the Rink night at the Sleeman Centre and the Storm took down the rival Rangers in the first of eight meetings this season. Damian Slavik earned the win in relief on Saturday before making 24 saves in Sunday’s 4-2 victory over Sarnia. Washington Capitals prospect Jake Karabela was a regular contributor last week with six points (2-4–6) in three games.
Mississauga Steelheads – up one spot to #5 this week
The Trout took it to the high-flying Peterborough Petes in a 7-1 triumph on Friday before blanking the Erie Otters 5-0, with a 48-save shutout by rookie Jack Ivankovic on Saturday. The Steelheads couldn’t match the Soo Greyhounds on Sunday, falling 5-2, but maintain their spot atop the Central Division standings with a 14-8-0-0 record. Luke Misa and Zander Veccia were both playmaking catalysts last week, recording seven and six assists respectively.
Brantford Bulldogs – up one spot to #14 this week
The Dogs skated to another win over Niagara last Wednesday before hitting a wall against the Soo Greyhounds in an 8-2 loss on Friday. Brantford scored a big two points over the Kingston Frontenacs on Sunday though, with Tomas Hamara netting the deciding goal in the third period of a 5-2 victory. Brantford is up to fifth in the Eastern Conference, having won seven of their last 10 games.
Kingston Frontenacs – up one spot to #15 this week
The Fronts took it to the Windsor Spitfires on Friday before coming up short in Brantford on Sunday. Chicago Blackhawks prospect Paul Ludwinski continues his point streak that is up to 14 games now, tied for the longest in the OHL this season.
Kitchener Rangers – down one spot to #2 this week
It’s tough to stay on top. The Rangers saw their eight-game winning streak snapped by Owen Sound on Friday night, losing again on Saturday in Guelph as a 5-2 lead turned into an 8-6 loss. Kitchener came back strong on Sunday in Flint, skating to a 3-1 win thanks to a 33-save showing by Jackson Parsons. The Rangers are on top of the OHL standings with a record of 18-7-0-0.
North Bay Battalion – down three spots to #6 this week
The Troops dropped a 6-3 decision at home to London on Thursday before falling 3-1 in Guelph on Friday. They ended the weekend on a high note, taking the wind out of Owen Sound’s sails as Dalyn Wakely scored the deciding goal at the Bayshore in a 6-3 triumph.
Peterborough Petes – down five spots to #7 this week
The honeymoon at #2 on the list was short-lived as Peterborough was defeated 5-2 by unranked Windsor at home on Thursday before coming out flat in a 7-1 road loss to Mississauga on Friday. The Petes return home for three straight this week with visits from Sudbury, Flint and North Bay.
Ottawa 67’s – down three spots to #8 this week
They won two of three, but it was by no means a banner week for the 67’s, who were outshot 79-44 but received excellent goaltending from Max Donoso in a pair of wins over the unranked Oshawa Generals. The Barber Poles couldn’t get past visiting Windsor on Sunday afternoon, losing 5-3 as the Spits earned their sixth win of the season with a third period surge.
London Knights – down two spots to #10 this week
Like Ottawa, London managed to return from a northern trip with four points, defeating North Bay and Barrie, but a 9-2 loss on Saturday in Sudbury was tough to swallow, pushing them below the Wolves on this week’s edition of the Power Rankings. The Knights are 15-8-0-1 on the season and face a good test at home to Mississauga on Friday before a trip to Saginaw on Saturday. Winnipeg Jets prospect Jacob Julien has come on strong with eight points (2-6–8) in three games last week.
Barrie Colts – down two spots to #16 this week
The Colts have flirted with a place in the bottom-four in recent weeks, dropping two more decisions this past week. To their credit, they peppered Owen Sound’s Carter George with 50 shots last Thursday but couldn’t come up with an answer for the hot young goaltender in a 3-0 loss. The Colts were overwhelmed in a 9-3 loss at home to London on Saturday.