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Long trip ends on successful note for Greyhounds

Winning ways continue as the Soo Greyhounds streak is extended to 14 games
20170323 Flint Firebirds at Soo Greyhounds Game 1 KA 13
File photo: Soo Greyhounds captain Tim Gettinger. Kenneth Armstrong/SooToday

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Another day, another victory for the Soo Greyhounds.

In the finale of a long East Division road trip on Sunday afternoon, the Greyhounds winning streak moved to 14 games after a 4-0 blanking of the Ottawa 67’s at TD Place in Ottawa. 

The Greyhounds scored three times in the second period en route to the victory.

Greyhounds captain Tim Gettinger, who picked up a goal in the game, called sweeping the road trip, which included wins in Peterborough on Thursday and Kingston on Friday, important.

“It’s a big weekend for us to walk out of here with six points,” Gettinger said. “The road trips take a toll on us, especially this one with the mileage that we have to cover but it’s definitely big for us.”

A team that has been successful on the road in recent years, the Greyhounds have continued the trend this season as the three weekend victories improves the Greyhounds record away from the Essar Centre this season to 12-2-1-0. 

“It’s tough to win in this league on the road at any time so to come off the road with three wins is a good accomplishment,” Bannister said. 

Leading 1-0 through 20 minutes, the Greyhounds scored three times in just over two minutes in the second period to take over the game.

“It took us a bit to get rolling but in the second period we really took control,” Gettinger said. 

Tyler Johnson made 32 saves for the shutout for the Greyhounds. 

“Tyler was really good early on.” Bannister said. “He stabilized things back there.”

Johnson, who picked up his second shutout with the team, credited his teammates for making things easier in the win.

“They’re always there for me,” Johnson said. “Matty (Villalta) and I really appreciate them. They block a lot of shots.”

“It’s a good team and a pretty close-knit group of guys,” Johnson also said. “They’ve made (joining the team) easy for me.”

Barrett Hayton had a goal and an assist for the Greyhounds while Jack Kopacka also had a goal. Defenceman Conor Timmins and Morgan Frost assisted on a pair of goals each for the Greyhounds.

Olivier Tremblay made 28 saves for the 67’s, who fall to 14-13-1-1 and sit in third in the OHL’s East Division.

The Greyhounds will take a 23-3-2-0 record into a four-game homestand that begins on Wednesday night as Sarnia makes its first appearance in Sault Ste. Marie in a 7:07 p.m. puck drop at the Essar Centre. 

The Greyhounds and Sting have split two meetings this season, both in Sarnia. The Sting won the first meeting on Oct. 27 by a 6-3 margin before the Greyhounds beat the Sting 4-3 in overtime on Nov. 10. The Oct. 27 meeting between the Greyhounds and Sting was the last time the Greyhounds lost a game before embarking on its current winning streak.

Sarnia enters Wednesday’s game two points behind the Greyhounds in the West Division with a record of 22-5-2-0 while the Greyhounds hold a game in hand.

In other action around the OHL on Sunday, in Hamilton, Matthew Strome had a goal and two assists as the Hamilton Bulldogs beat the Mississauga Steelheads 5-3. Brandon Saigeon scored a pair of goals while Ryan Moore assisted on three goals for the Bulldogs. Ryan McLeod assisted on three goals for Mississauga.

In Kingston, Matt Hotchkiss scored a pair of goals as the Kingston Frontenacs beat the Barrie Colts 6-2. Jeremy Helvig made 43 saves for Kingston while defenceman Eemeli Rasanen set up three goals.

In Sarnia, Jordan Ernst had two goals and an assist as the Sarnia Sting beat the Oshawa Generals 4-1. Goaltender Justin Fazio made 42 saves for the Sting. 

In Windsor, Jalen Smereck scored 28 seconds into overtime as the Flint Firebirds beat the Windsor Spitfires 4-3. Jake Smith had a goal and an assist for the Spitfires.

In Erie, Adam Mascherin scored at 1:43 of overtime as the Kitchener Rangers beat the Erie Otters 3-2. The Rangers scored three unanswered goals after Erie opened up a 2-0 lead early in the contest.

In Saginaw, Evan Cormier made 37 saves as the Saginaw Spirit beat the Niagara IceDogs 3-1. Blade Jenkins and Marcus Crawford assisted on two goals each for the Spirit.