Game Photos: Emily Martin
COCHRANE, Ont. – Matteo Peca had a goal and two assists, including a helper on the game-winner, to lead the Cochrane Crunch to their first win of the season, a 5-3 triumph over the French River Rapids, in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League play Saturday at Tim Horton Events Centre.
A steady Cooper Bowman notched the night’s opening goal as he now has points in each of the seven games, he has appeared in, early in the campaign by coming from around the back of the net and tucking one between the post and Cochrane netminder Michael Nickolau’s pad.
Regrouping, the Crunch tied it late in the session as Jake Alton swatted in a loose puck past Rapids’ netminder Brady Dyer.
The visitors regained the lead in the second stanza as Levi Siau made a nice cross-crease feed for Chase Lefebvre to tap into the open left side on Nickolau.
Battling back, Cochrane evened things up once more thanks to a Peca power play effort.
Not done there, Liam Boswell’s initial league goal midway through the contest with help from Peca and Sebastien Ouimet.
The home side kept coming and added another late in the frame off a two-on-one where Peca sent a feed to an open Ethan Ingram in front, who made a quick deke to his right and slid the disk into the open corner to make it 4-2 Crunch after 40 minutes.
Making things interesting late in regulation, Dominik Godin snagged the puck at the right of the net and stuffed in his chance with just over two minutes left in regulation.
Pulling Dyer after that for an extra attacker, French River pressed for a tying tally, but Ouimet got a chance at the empty net and made no mistake by depositing the night’s final marker from the left wing to secure Cochrane’s initial triumph of the season.
Nickolau made 39 saves to pick up the win while Dyer faced 31 attempts in defeat.