by Romano Di Franco
The Nepean Raiders hosted the Ottawa Junior Senators in action Saturday night at the Nepean Sportsplex Steve Yzerman Arena in the final of a four game series. Connor Shibley got the start in the Raider goal while Tyler Laureault was in between the pipes for the Junior Sens.
Unlike the previous three games, this time it was OJS that opened the scoring as Ian Tookenay got his first of the season beating Shibley just fifty-seven seconds into the contest. Vincent Velocci made it a two-goal lead as he found the back of the Raiders net in the sixteenth minute of action.
The Raiders didn’t wait long to respond as William Venne made a great move to beat OJS d-man Alex Pineau and then sent a pass to Rylan Iwachniuk who went five-hole on Laureault. The period would see one more goal before it was over with OJS restoring their two-goal lead on a goal by Bodie Nobes. Shibley made the first stop but Nobes banged home the rebound and OJS led 3-1 after 20 minutes. Shots were eight apiece. The Raiders special teams killed off both short-handed situations while the PowerPlay was 0-1.
Bryan Landsberger relieved Connor Shibley to start the second period and was put to the test on a 2-1 stopping Curtis Fabbro and then stoning Chandler Romeo a minute later.
The Raiders would get the only goal of the second period as Coleman Bennett got the Raiders back to within one when he snapped a William Venne pass over the glove of Tyler Laureault. Rylan Iwachniuk picked up his second point of the game with a helper.
After forty minutes, the Raiders trailed 3-2 with Landsberger stopping all 16 shots sent his way.
Mahigan Decontie was johnny-on-the-spot as OJS defenseman Robbie Stewart gave the puck away in front of his own net that Decontie pounced on and put over the shoulder blocker-side of Laureault who wasn’t expecting that shot to tie the game at 3-3 and send the game to overtime for the second time in the series.
Patrick Larkin had the best chance for the Raiders in OT while Curtis Fabbro had the best chance for the Junior Sens but neither could convert and the game went to the shoot-out. Bryan Landsberger blanked his former team in the shootout while Will Venne and Patrick Maule scored to give the Raiders the win in the series finale.
For his efforts, Bryan Landsberger was named the game’s first star with 35 saves on 35 shots. Rylan Iwachniuk got the second star for his 1G and 1A. OJS centreman Vincent Velocci earned the third star. Honorable mention goes to William Venne who had one of his finest games as a Raider adding two assists to his shoot-out winner. See the complete game summary here.
The Raiders were outshot 43-22 but prevailed in the conclusion of their four game series against the Ottawa Junior Senators. Oddly enough, the team that scored first lost every game in this series.