(Photo Via: Claus Andersen/Getty Images North America)
LONDON – The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds win another game on the season, moving their win total to 49 games. This victory came against the 5th place London Knights who are battling with Owen Sound for home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs. It was a 6-2 road win for the Greyhounds on Sunday Afternoon.
Jack Kopacka, of Metamora, Mich., extended his point streak to 7 games as he scored the game’s opening goal, 9:14 into the first period. Kopacka’s 25th of the season gives him 75 goals in his OHL career with the Greyhounds. Kopacka would add an assist later in the game, which would mark his first goal and assist in the same game since January 26th, which was a 6-4 win over the defending Memorial Cup Champion Windsor Spitfires.
Andrew Perrott would score 4:21 later to even the contest at 1-1. The 4th goal of the season for the Columbia Station, Ohio., Native marked his 2nd goal in the last four games. The first goal of the 2nd round picks career came back on December 12th in a 6-2 win over the Erie Otters.
Morgan Frost would score just 1:17 into the middle frame. The Aurora, Ont., native who was picked 27th overall by Philadelphia in the 2017 NHL Draft, notched his 36th of the season on that goal, however, he hadn’t scored a goal in the last two games for the Greyhounds.
London wouldn’t back down that easily, though. Nathan Dunkley, of Campbellford, Ont., would score just 3:07 after the Frost goal, on the power play, with Noah Carroll sitting in the box for tripping. It was Dunkley’s 18th goal of the season and just his 5th since joining the Knights in a deal with Kingston which saw Cliff Pu head the other way. Dunkley had been held scoreless in the previous six games coming into the matchup against the CHL’s best.
The Greyhounds would respond 10:13 later on in the period however. Morgan Frost scored his 2nd of the game and 37th of the season. The goal came shorthanded as Noah Carroll was serving a double-minor for high-sticking. Cole Tymkin took a minor for roughing at the same stoppage so it was 5-on-4 for the Knights for only two minutes. Ryan Roth served the other two minutes for Noah Carroll. This marks Frost’s 9th game with multiple goals. Frost sits third in the league scoring race with 98 points. Aaron Luchuk of Barrie and Jordan Kyrou of Sarnia sit tied for first with 99 on the season.
So the 2nd Frost goal of the game gave the Greyhounds a 3-2 advantage, which they would hold heading into the third. This is when they would break out. Rookie Zach Trott out of Honeywood, Ont., scored his 2nd of the season just under 4 minutes into the final frame. Taylor Raddysh, of Caledon, Ont., scored his 30th goal of the season and 15th since joining the Greyhounds which saw Hayden Fowler and a tractor-trailer full of picks head to the Erie Otters. Hayden Verbeek would close out the scoring with his 27th goal of the season coming on an empty net, while shorthanded.
Joseph Raaymakers recorded the loss for the London Knights, despite making 39 saves. The Chatham, Ont., native, who played with the Greyhounds for the last three seasons and was dealt for counterpart on the night Tyler Johnson, now has a 24-12-2 record on the season with a 2.75 GAA and a 0.912 SV%. He has recorded a loss in 3 of his last 5 games.
Tyler Johnson picked up the win for the Greyhounds, turning away 32 of the 34 shots that were directed towards him on the afternoon. The Amherst, NY., native had a 0-4-1 record to start the year with London. Since joining the Greyhounds he hasn’t been credited with a regulation loss, and the lone game he dropped was in a shootout in his last start on February 14th against the Saginaw Spirit. Johnson has 11 wins since joining the Greyhounds with a 2.54 GAA and a 0.910 SV%.
The three goal 3rd period solidified the win for the Grey hounds and gave them their fourth consecutive win, scoring 27 goals in that time. That is almost averaging 7 goals per game (6.75 to be exact). The Greyhounds will next suit up on Wednesday night as they travel to Saginaw to take on the Spirit. Puck drop is set for 7:05pm.
London has now dropped two straight since their three-game win streak. They will need to regroup as they have the next three days off, before taking on the Peterborough Petes on the road on Thursday night. That puck drop is also set for 7:05pm.
First Star: #16 Morgan Frost – 2 Goals, +3, 9 shots on goal, 25% Faceoffs (5/20)
Second Star: #24 Andrew Perrott – 1 Goal, +1, 2 shots on goal
Third Star: #52 Jack Kopacka – 1 Goal 1 Assist, +2, 2 shots on goal