The Kingston Frontenacs and the Peterborough Petes met in the back-half of a home-and-home on Friday night and marked the annual Remembrance Day Game as the Frontenacs and their fans had A Night in Honour in recognition of military members and their families at the Leon’s Centre.
Both teams were without key rookies as Frontenacs Shane Wright and Petes Mason McTavish were still away at the U-17 Hockey Challenge in Alberta. Kingston head coach Kurtis Foster was also still on assignment as assistant coach with Team Red. Petes leading scorer and OHL goal leader (tied 19) Nick Robertson did not play in the game after suffering a hand injury in the last game.
The Petes skated to a win in the first meeting between the clubs last Tuesday in Peterborough. Frontenacs penalties may have cost them a chance at the win. Holding a 3-2 lead midway through the contest, they took three consecutive penalties with the Petes power-play unit finally scoring on the third tying the game late in the second period going on to win.
Tonight, while Kingston was much more disciplined taking only one penalty, the Petes secondary scoring proved the difference again in a 4-1 win. Peterborough’s 78 goals made them the third highest-scoring team in the Ontario Hockey League coming in and their fifth-ranked power-play suggested Kingston would be wise not to take the five penalties they did in the previous matchup. The Frontenacs again went down first for the 14th time in 17 games and haven’t scored the games’ first goal since October 19th during a loss in London.
With Petes goaltender Hunter Jones resting, the Frontenacs caught a break as the Minnesota Wild prospect leads the OHL in wins (12). He will start for Team OHL against Russia on Monday in London. Tye Austin got the call for Peterborough to face the Frontenacs. Ryan Dugas was back in the net for Kingston after Brendan Bonello made 41 saves on 46 shots during Tuesday’s loss in Peterborough.
Just over two minutes into the contest, Peterborough’s Brady Hinz scored directly off a face-off win by Zach Gallant making it 1-0. It was his third goal in two games against the Frontenacs this week and he wasn’t finished. It was a quick shot that barely allowed Dugas to even react. After Gallant won the draw cleanly, Hinz wasted no time firing a shot that beat Dugas high on the short-side for his seventh of the season.
It was Kingston who seemed to take control of the period after the early goal by Hinz, firing five consecutive shots within three minutes. They also allowed the Petes only five shots on Dugas over the remaining 17:59 of the opening frame and after some sustained pressure, the Frontenacs would get the games’ first power-play with the Petes Shawn Spearing off for holding. The Frontenacs power-play could not connect however and the teams would trade some chances before heading to intermission.
Sometimes in the second game of a back-to-back, things can get testy. Kingston’s Evan Brand had a lengthy scrap with Petes’ John Parker-Jones with just under five minutes left in the first period. The Frontenacs gained some momentum while maintaining their discipline after the fight as the Petes took two more penalties late in the period. Kingston would have 29 seconds of 5-on-3 time but could not register a shot on goal with one attempt while up two players. Coach Caputi wasn’t pleased with the power-play units on the night.
After getting the first four shots on goal to start the second period it was Kingston who got rewarded with a goal finally. A few minutes into the frame, Kingston had traffic in front off a face-off win and when Brahanry shot it towards the net it was tipped past the surprised Petes goalie. Rookie Maddox Callens was credited with his first career OHL goal at 5:16 as he got a piece of the Brahaney shot to make it 1-1. Callens said after the game: “Sure wasn’t the prettiest one, but what can you do, a goal is a goal so I’ll take it.” Jordan Frasca also drew his team-leading ninth assist on the play.
The Frontenacs took their first penalty almost thirteen minutes into the period when Lucas Peric was called for hooking as a Peterborough forward tried to break through the Kingston defenders on a nice play forcing Peric to take the penalty. Kingston penalty killers were excellent allowing only one shot. Once again, they put pressure on Peterborough after killing the Peric penalty causing the Petes to take a too-many-men penalty at 16:14. Austin would make a couple of good saves for the Petes while killing the penalty off, however.
Goals against in the first or last minute of periods can be heart breakers, especially in a tied game after battling back from being down. Caputi said after the game it was the 14th time in 52 periods the Fronts have had that happen and feels as though it has potentially cost them points. After a failed clearing attempt by Kingston, Hinz and Declan Chisholm teamed up to help Keegan McMullen net his third of the year and second in consecutive games at 19:57 of the period giving the visiting Petes at 2-1 lead. With just three seconds left in the period, it proved to be a dagger as Kingston would never get a lead in the third. Kingston held the edge in shots 20-19 and after giving up 46 shots last game it was a definite improvement.
Peterborough pulled away at 5:59 of the third period when Hinz made it 3-1 with his second of the night and eighth of the campaign. The goal put the former Sarnia Sting draft pick in on five of the last six goals the Petes had scored going back to the last game versus Kingston. Chisholm and Gallant both earned their second assists of the game. Chisholm would record his third assist of the game helping set-up Semyon Der-Argutchinsev’s fourth goal just over a minute later at 7:06 making it 4-1 to effectively put the game away.
With leading goal-scorer Nick Roberston out of the line-up and Mason McTavish (tied with Liam Kirk for second) away at U-17, it was the Petes secondary scoring again, led by Hinz, that fuelled the victory for the Petes who now sit just one point back of division leader Oshawa. Goaltender Tye Austin stopped 25-of-26 shots earning a star on the night to record his first win on the year.
Game Night Spotlight:
The Frontenacs third round selection in last summer’s OHL Priority Draft scored his first career OHL goal in the second period to follow up on his first OHL point on October 20th in Sarnia. The 5’10”, 176 lb hard-nosed winger has shown a willingness to use his physical play to help open ice for teammates and plays an effective forechecking game. He said he’s watching his discipline mentioning the team had a strong talk about too many penalties in the last game. When asked about the player’s first goal, coach Caputi commented, “Yeah absolutely, I thought he was really good. He’s done a lot of good things, he’s earned everything he’s gotten and hopefully, the trajectory keeps going north for him.”
The Langton, Ontario native has shown signs of offence and will be making an appearance on the scoresheet more often sooner than later. His two-way game and hustle are strong as evidenced by his great defensive play to break up a two-on-one shortly after his goal. Selected as the games third star he finished with three shots and was even on the night. “To get that one off the back (goal)took a lot of weight off. It felt nice to do it in front of the hometown fans,” said the former member of the Brantford 99’ers. Callens believes the team is working in the right direction. “I think the boys are pretty positive, we know we can do it, we know if we just do that little bit of extra work and we can get there”, he added.
Fronts Luca Caputi was Interim head coach for the third consecutive game while Foster is away.
Shane Wright and Kurtis Foster expected back for Kingston’s Nov. 15th game in Kitchener.
Jakob Brahaney led all Frontenacs shooters with six shots-on-goal
Kingston’s Luke Drewitt went 10-for-15 on the face-off circle for KGN
Peterborough’s Zach Gallant extended his point-streak to six games – 3G, 5A
2: Tye Austin
3: Maddox Callens
CHL Fan-Voted Hardest Working Player:
Zayde Wisdom +1, 2 SOG
Kingston plays the next four away from Leon’s Centre. The Frontenacs travel to the Sleeman Centre tomorrow (Nov.9) to face the Guelph Storm at 7 PM.
Honourary Captains: Less We Forget