Week 4 Recap
Thur Oct 17 Petes 4 – Bulldogs 3
GM Mike Oke couldn’t have asked for a better weekend. The Petes finally were able to play their home opener on Thursday night and defeated the Hamilton Bulldogs 4-3. It wasn’t a pretty home debut, but 2 late 3rd period goals from Nick Robertson and captain Zach Gallant helped seal the regulation win. The team’s start could be described as timid as they were unable to get the home fans into the game early. After a slow start, the Petes regained focus and were able to throw 22 pucks on net in the 2nd. After blowing the lead in the 3rd, They showed strong determination and were able to find victory late in the game. Peterborough dominated possession throughout the game but were unable to bury several chances. Chalk it up to the home debut jitters.
Fri Oct 18 Petes 3 – 67’s 1
For the second time in the early 2019-20 season, the Petes were able to take down the boys from Ottawa. Ottawa is now 7-4 and half of their losses are at the hands of the Petes. Goaltender Hunter Jones stood tall in this one making 32 saves on the night. The Petes were outshot in the game 33-18, yet were able to come away with the victory. Prior to puck drop, Ottawa received bad news regarding centerman Graeme Clarke. The 19-year-old Ottawa native old will undergo shoulder surgery and will miss up to 4 months. The Petes themselves were without the then-OHL’s assist leader Semyon Der-Arguchintsev. SDA was suspended 2 games for an altercation after the final buzzer with Tag Bertuzzi in the game vs Hamilton. This was yet another impressive team win against a quality opponent. Peterborough’s goals in this one came from Liam Kirk, Cam Butler, and Max Grondin.
Sun. Oct 20 Petes 2 – Generals 1
What a way to end the weekend. Hunter Jones made his 3rd start of the weekend and stymied the Generals between the pipes. This was a statement game for the Petes as they handed Oshawa their 2nd straight loss right after beginning the season 9-0-0. It was just Friday night when Oshawa’s unbeaten streak was snapped after a 9-5 loss to the Sarnia Sting. In this game, Mason McTavish opened the scoring with a beautiful backhand goal. picking up the pick after an odd bounce off defenseman David Jesus’ skate. McTavish, the Pete’s 5th overall pick, has burst onto the scene and now leads all rookies with 8 goals scored.
This was an impressive win for the Petes who have shown they like to play the run and gun offense. This was on display early as they gave up 26 goals against through their first 5 games. With only 5 goals given up this weekend, the Petes are showing they can compete with the top teams in the league. They are able to put up points while also playing a low scoring, tightly defended, defensive style when needed. Solid team defense has allowed them to win the close, one-goal games; a sign of a quality team. The hardest part of the schedule is now over. The 9-game road stretch to begin the year produced positive results. The Petes now own a 9-3 record which ties them with Oshawa for the top spot in the OHL. As silly as it is, The Petes should pop onto Kia’s CHL Top 10 season rankings.
Takeaways from Week 4
- The Ryan Merkley drama seems to far off in the distance of the Petes’ rear-view mirror. Credit has to be given to management who were able to clear the distractions early in the season, letting the team harmonize their chemistry and vision. Defenseman Jacob Paquette has brought a steady, drama-free presence to the back end.
- Hunter Jones was named the OHL “On the Run” Player of the Week for week 4. He went 3-0 on the weekend, stopping 82 of 87 shots, for a .943 SV%. The 19-year-old Minnesota Wild prospect now owns a record of 9-1 record, 1 SO, with a .241 G.A.A. and .919 SV% on the season.
- Both Leaf draft picks Nick Robertson and Semyon Der-Arguchintsev were passed in their league-leading stat categories. Arthur Kaliyev now leads the league in goals with 14. Robertson is tied for 2nd with 12. Saginaw’s Cole Perfetti and Ilya Solovyov have passed SDA in assists. The Petes won’t care about that seeing as they are tied for the OHL league in Team Points.
- Rookie Mason McTavish leads the OHL in rookie goals scored with 8. The 5th overall pick has been dynamite for the Petes playing mostly on the 2nd line with Cam Butler and Zach Gallant. The top line of Robertson, Kirk, and SDA have combined for 53 points in 12 games. It has been the 2nd line led by McTavish that has added secondary scoring. McTavish has also received plenty of time on the powerplay which can be rare for a 16-year-old rookie.
- With still one overage spot available, the Petes will look to add a third in the near future. They have great depth throughout their lineup but you can never have too many veterans. This week the Kitchener Rangers sent Joseph Gareffa to the Ottawa 67’s. There are currently 3 teams in the league with 4 Overagers; Ottawa, Sarnia, and the Niagara Ice Dogs. The OHL has a rule that you can only keep 3 20-year-old players on your roster. With Ottawa adding Gareffa who can play both the defense position and both wings, Ottawa potentially has 3 20-year-old defensemen. It is logical to think that Hudson Wilson would become available. In Niagara, Ivan Lodnia was released from his professional tryout and sent back to Niagara. It will be interesting to see if GM Oke can find a few remaining assets to bring in a third quality OA.
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