Lumberjacks edge Gold Miners in shootout

HEARST, Ont. – Alec Johnson supplied the lone goal in the shootout to help lift the Hearst Lumberjacks to a narrow 3-2 win over the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League action Sunday at Claude Larose Arena.

First period play saw the visiting Gold Miners collect the lone tally of the session as Joshua Maine notched his ninth of the campaign with assists going to Matthew Brassard and James Scott.

Answering back quickly to commence the second stanza, Hearst capitalized on a man advantage opportunity that carried over into the frame as Jake Desando’s 22nd tied it in the first minute, in what proved to be the only marker of the session.

Heading to the third, the Lumberjacks went in front with just over seven minutes to go on a Blaise Arkle power play goal as he picked up his 18th of 2018-19.

Battling back a couple of shifts later, Kirkland Lake countered to force OT as Brassard netted the equalizer at 15:34.

Moving on to the extra session, neither side would convert in the five-minute OT thus sent the match-up to the shootout to determine a winner.

In extra shots, Johnson connected his chance for Hearst with a nifty backhand while Lumberjacks netminder Nicholas Tallarico saved all three attempts he faced to backstop the home side to the victory.

Tallarico also made 38 stops prior to that to earn the win with Kirkland Lake goaltender Dawson Rodin seeing 42 attempts in defeat where his club earned a point in the standings.

With the result, Hearst improved to 22-14-4-1 on the campaign while the East Division-leading Gold Miners slipped to 27-11-2-1 overall.