Photos: Sudbury Light Event Photography
SUDBURY, Ont. – The Elliot Red Wings capped off a successful Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League Showcase for their side Wednesday with the second win in as many days, as they defeated the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners 7-3 at Gerry McCrory Countryside Sports Complex.
The Gold Miners were however first to strike in the contest, off an odd-man rush, when John-Paul Scaringi came down the left wing and fired a shot from the circle that beat Red Wings’ starter Cameron Smith at 6:59.
Getting that back a few minutes later, while shorthanded, Elliot Lake’s Zachary Vickerman went in alone a clear-cut breakaway and converted by ripping one past the blocker of Kirkland Lake goaltender John Lloyd.
Then taking the lead just a few moments before the first period came to a close, Ethan Mercer knocked down a clearing attempt at the blueline and snapped a shot on net that got past a partially screened Lloyd.
Some quality, prime scoring opportunities for both sides went for naught in a scoreless middle session with Lloyd and Smith being the stoppers as the clubs reached the second intermission with the Red Wings taking their narrow cushion into the finale frame.
A goal-filled third period, opened the offensive floodgates as the teams scored seven times, including four in the opening two and a half minutes of the session.
Striking twice in rapid succession, early in the third, Elliot Lake gained the upper hand and chased Lloyd in favour of back-up Braydon Garnhart.
The initial tally came at 1:17 when Braden Twigg snapped in his first NOJHL goal from the top of the left circle that fooled the Kirkland Lake goalkeeper.
Adding another one 28 seconds later, Teegan Dumont converted on a wraparound that resulted in the end of Lloyd’s day.
The change seemed to regenerate the Gold Miners as they got one back less than a minute later thanks to Ken Taylor, who chipped in a rebound off a backhand attempt by Luca Maiuri.
Not done there, they clicked again right off the draw and saw Bhrett Hibbert promptly bury a cross-ice feed from Alex McDonald to make it a one-goal game with his initial NOJHL marker.
The tallies kept coming as the Red Wings’ Brodie Kearns countered in transition and benefitted from a Kaden Laverdiere pass and redirected it past Garnhart.
Going back up by three at 11:41, Mark Hill picked up his first of the campaign and he finished off a flurry of Elliot Lake chances from the right hash mark.
Sam Noad then capped off the victory with a late power play goal as he neatly tucked the puck into the left-hand corner in the final moments to round out the scoring.