Monday, October 15, 2012

Making the most

Mitchell Theoret (OHL Images)
When you cover the prospects of the New York Islanders and the New York Rangers; there are times when you want to cheer those prospects who are given an opportunity and make the most of it. Mitchell Theoret (NYI 2011 7th) of the Niagara IceDogs is one of those prospects as he is a coach's player.

A coach's player is a player who gets asked to do whatever is needed to help his team win. A player who puts the team ahead of his own personal gain and over the last 2 seasons it is what I have watched from Mitchell Theoret.

From being a 4th line energy player to a 3rd line grinder to his current role of bodyguard/grinder/power forward, Theoret does what it takes to help his IceDogs win. Theoret is a 19 year old 6'2 220 left wing from Montreal in his 4th season with the IceDogs and has been elevated to the IceDog's first line.

3 games after the promotion and Theoret has a career best 3 game goal scoring streak thanks to his 3rd goal of the season in the IceDog's 4-3 shootout win over the Windsor Spitfires. The win snapped a 3 game losing streak for the IceDogs who had to rally from down 1-3 to force overtime.

Theoret scored his 3rd goal in the first period picking up a rebound of a Dougie Hamilton shot and putting it in at 10:59 for a 1-0 IceDogs lead. It was the only goal scored in the 1st period but Windsor responded with 3 unanswered goals in the second to take the lead.

One of those goals was scored on a Windsor power play while Ryan Strome (NYI 2011 1st) was serving a minor for cross-checking. Strome took 2 penalties in this game but made up for it by scoring the tying goal at 12:07 of the 3rd period while on the power play.

It was a 5 on 3 power play and Strome took advantage to record his 7th of the season and first power play goal of the season as Strome improved to 7-7-14 (8th overall in the OHL). It helped the IceDogs force overtime then the shootout where they got the win.

The 3rd Islander prospect on the IceDogs defenseman Jesse Graham did not miss out of the scoring party as Graham had the primary assist on Niagara's 2nd goal. It was Graham's 3rd assist on the season (0-3-3) but it meant that the 3 Islander prospects on the IceDogs had a hand on all 3 goals.

In Medicine Hat, Shane McColgan (NYR 2011 5th) and his Saskatoon Blades earned their 2nd straight win 6-3 over the Medicine Hat Tigers. McColgan was 1-1-2 setting up what proved to be the game winning goal in the 2nd period while the Blades were on the power play.

Whatever was ailing McColgan's game seems to be disappearing as McColgan has a 3 game scoring streak going (2-1-3) but even better was the Blade power play went 3 for 4 for the game with McColgan the QB on it.

McColgan got on the board when he scored his 2nd goal of the season with just 1 second remaining in the 1st period. It gave the Blades a 2-1 lead and was the start of 4 unanswered goals that put the game away.

McColgan's assist came when he set up the 4th of those goals while the Blades were on the power play. It was McColgan's 7th assist of the season and 9th overall point. McColgan has gone 2-3-5 in his last 3 games and he is starting to play the way the Blades had hoped for when they traded for him.

In Guelph it was the battle of defensive prospects as Peter Ceresnak (NYR 2011 6th) and his Peterborough Petes took on Andrey Pedan (NYI 2011 3rd) and his Guelph Storm. It was a wild back and forth penalty filled game as both teams each went 3 for 9 on the power play but Guelph won 7-6 in overtime.

Ceresnak played a good game registering his 1st assist of the season as he set up Stephen Nosad to put the Petes ahead 6-5 at 15:50 of the 3rd period. But the Petes gave up a shorthanded goal with 2:23 remaining in regulation then Guelph scored 23 seconds in overtime for the win.

Pedan didn't score for the Storm but this was a very entertaining game to watch as there were 6 lead changes and both teams blew 2 goal leads in this game. Guelph stretches their unbeaten streak to 6 games (5-0-0-1) while the Petes have registered points in 4 straight games.

In Kootenay, Michael St. Croix (NYR 2011 4th) along with Griffin Reinhart (NYI 2012 1st) and the rest of their Edmonton Oil Kings were shut out by the Kootenay Ice 1-0. The loss snapped a 4 game scoring streak for St. Croix who was 2-6-8 during his streak.

Loic Leduc (NYI 2012 4th) and his Cape Breton Screaming Eagles dropped their 3 straight game, this time 5-2 to the Acadie-Bathurst Titan. Leduc was scoreless with 2 shots and 2 hits but he also took a tripping penalty that the Titan cashed in on for their 4th goal of the game.

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