KIRKLAND LAKE, Ont. – Gregory Trudeau-Paquet tallied twice to reach the 20-goal plateau in a season for the first time in his Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League career as the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners clipped the Elliot Lake Wildcats 4-1 Friday at the Joe Mavrinac Community Complex.
With the win the Gold Miners moved back into first place in the overall NOJHL standings with 45 points, one ahead of the Soo Thunderbirds who lost 3-2 at the Soo Eagles on this night.
After a scoreless first fame, Kirkland Lake kicked off the night’s scoring 3:42 into the middle stanza thanks to Trudeau-Paquet.
Elliot Lake answered five minutes later to level the proceedings when Eric Conley collected his 10th of the year as he finished off an Andrew Maltby feed who has already set personal season-bests in goals, assists and points for the Wildcats.
Answering back, the Gold Miners notched a pair of markers in the back half of the session to take a 3-1 lead after two periods thanks to markers from Aiden Wagner and Spencer Jones, with the latter picking up his first NOJHL goal.
Trudeau-Paquet then helped secure the outcome in the third with a power play effort that saw him notch his team-leading 20th with under five minutes to play.
With two assists on the night, Kirkland Lake’s Sam Ellwood extended a point streak to six games, including three straight multi-point affairs.
Gold Miners goaltender Dawson Rodin made 25 saves to pick-up the win while Justin Vertesi in the Elliot Lake net faced 35 shots in defeat for the Wildcats.
The Gold Miners will now not see NOJHL game action until January 4th, but will face competition against Eastern U.S. Jr. squads as part of their first annual NCAA Campus Tour and Exhibition Series next week before hitting their holiday break.
Photos courtesy of CapturingTheMoment.ca