Sunday, February 12, 2012

Sometimes you can't win them all

Sunday was a day where the outcome did not always reflect the kind of effort given by the New York Ranger and New York Islander prospects. For 2 New York Ranger prospects, it was a cruel day where their efforts did not result in the 2 points their teams needed.

Our marquee matchup on Sunday was the Niagara IceDogs with Ryan Strome (NYI 2011 1st) and Mitchell Theoret (NYI 2011 7th) visiting Christian Thomas (NYR 2010 2nd) and his Oshawa Generals.

For the IceDogs, they were looking at keeping 1st place in the OHL's Eastern Conference while the Generals are in a 4 team brawl for 3 playoff spots. The IceDogs seem to have everything going for them right now as they are healthy and just got back their best defenseman from suspension while the Generals are struggling just to play 500 hockey.

The IceDogs came away with a 5-3 win but not without Christian Thomas doing his very best to try to win this game for the Generals. Thomas scored two goals and assisted on the third General's goal but did not get enough support from his teammates.

A scoreless 1st period led to a wild 2nd as Thomas came out firing needing just 63 seconds to score the game's opening goal giving the Generals a quick 1-0 lead. The lead only lasted for 2:32 as the IceDogs responded with a power-play goal to tie the score at 1 apiece with Ryan Strome getting the secondary assist.

At 9:10 Thomas set up Andy Andreoff for the Generals 2nd goal of the game again giving Oshawa lead this time 2-1. The Generals failed to hold lead as the IceDogs scored 2 unanswered goals to tie and then take the lead for the first time in the game at 3-2.

That was the score as the game entered the 3rd period and it was Thomas answering again this time scoring on the power play at 7:01 to tie the game up at 3. The score stayed that way and it was looking like the game was go-ahead to overtime but Niagara scored with just under 3 minutes to go in regulation to break the tie.

Niagara added an empty net goal in the game's final seconds for the final score of 5-3. It was a tough one for the Generals to lose but they just could not stop the IceDogs.

Thomas was named the game's second star for his 2 goal, 1 assist effort which gives him now a 27-27-54 mark for the season. Strome's secondary assist extends his scoring streak to 9 games and he is now 20-26-46.

Mitchell Theoret was scoreless as Niagara won their 6th straight as they retained 1st place in the OHL's Eastern Conference. As for Oshawa, they remain in sixth place but the 3 teams chasing them are separated by just 2 points.

The Generals were able to remain in 6th place because the Peterborough Petes with Andrew Yogan (NYR 2010 3rd) and Peter Ceresnak (NYR 2011 6th) also lost as they dropped a 5-3 decision to the Brampton Battalion.

Considering that not even 24 hours ago the Petes were blown out 12-0 by the Owen Sound Attack, one could say at least their defense improved. Andrew Yogan did his best to try to prevent another loss as he too had a three point performance (1-2-3).

After Brampton had jumped out to a 2-0 lead after one period, Yogan scored his 26th goal of the season unassisted at 10:01 of the 2nd cutting Brampton's lead to 1. Unfortunately for Yogan, Brampton added 3 unanswered goals after his to take a 5-1 lead going into the 3rd.

In the third, Yogan set up Alan Quine for a goal at 1:03 and then earned a secondary assist on Quine's 2nd but that was as close as Peterborough would get. Yogan's 3 points improved him to 26-25-51 as the 26 goals are career high for him.

Ceresnak had another quiet night going scoreless as Peterborough drops their 2nd straight game and fell into 8th place in the OHL's Eastern Conference.

JT Miller (NYR 2011 1st) had primary assists on his Plymouth Whalers 1st 2 goals of the game as the Whalers needed the shootout before coming away with a 5-4 shootout win over the Saginaw Spirit.

The Whalers defense has somehow disappeared in recent days as they gave up 4 goals and 57 shots to the Spirit. The Whalers are not playing like the team that was challenging for the OHL's Western Conference championship as they have fallen 8 points behind the London Knights.

Miller's 2 assists give him a 4 game scoring streak (2-4-6) as he is now 21-34-55 on the season.

Andrey Pedan (NYI 2001 3rd) was scoreless as his Guelph Storm were beaten 6-3 by the Kitchener Rangers. The loss combined with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds earning a point in their game with the Sarnia Sting drops the Storm into 9th place in the OHL's Western Conference.

It was more the same for the Storm; penalties and just bad play overall as in a week they have gone from 6th place to 9th place. Pedan was scoreless with a -1, taking a penalty in the games last minutes with the Storm trailing 4-3 and the resulting power play led to an empty net goal for the final score.

Kirill Kabanov (NYI 2010 3rd) was scoreless as his Shawinigan Cataractes extended their unbeaten streak to 3 games with a 4-1 win over the the Chicoutimi Sangueneens. A very quiet game for Kabanov in just his 2nd game back from a concussion.

(Thomas - Aaron Bell of OHL Images)

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