TRENTON, Ont. – A pair of late goals allowed OJHL Coffey to first tie it, then get the game-winner on the next shift, as they went on to defeat Team NOJHL 4-3 Wednesday in their finale at the Eastern Canada Cup All-Star Challenge in Trenton, Ont.
The best early chance in the contest saw Kobe Keller (Soo Eagles) denied on a partial break from in close by the pad of OJHL Coffey goaltender Jett Alexander near the seven-minute mark of the first period.
Coffey came back after that and opened the scoring as Ben Evans was left alone near the front of the net and lifted his chance over a sprawled Carter McPhail (Soo Eagles) at 8:43.
They then tacked on another just 31 seconds later as Brayden Sampson was allowed to skate in untouched on the left side where he slid a backhand underneath McPhail.
Team NOJHL got back into it at 11:39 when Nick Techel (Soo Eagles) fed a pass over to defenceman Linden Namagoose (Kirkland Lake Gold Miners) who wired one from the left face-off circle past Alexander.
A NOJHL equalizer by Techel in the waning moments of the period was waived off as his snap shot from the right side was ruled not to have entered the net before time had expired in the session.
The NOJHL side kept coming to begin the final frame and were rewarded with a tying tally at 3:42 when Christian Bardarson (Soo Eagles) darted through a maze of OJHL defenders and snapped in his chance from close range.
The Soo Eagles representatives at the 10-team event continued to impress for Team NOJHL as hard work set-up the go ahead marker when Kobe Keller chipped one over goaltender Chris Elliot, who entered the contest in the second stanza.
However the OJHL drew level at 17:54 on a Rob Clerc effort then supplied the game-winner 21 seconds later off the stick of Thomas Maia to complete the late rally.
McPhail faced 31 shots in defeat while his teammates had 17 attempts on the OJHL net.
Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League game action resumes tonight as the Powassan Voodoos host the French River Rapids in a 7 p.m. start at the Sportsplex.
Photo credit: Tim Bates/OJHL Images