Knights begin northern trip with a win in Barrie

Mike Stubbs/980CFPL

A day that started with a trade ended with a victory as the London Knights knocked off the Colts 5-3 in Barrie on Thursday night.

Alec Regula and Sam Miletic led the way offensively for London. Each had a goal and two assists. Liam Foudy and Cole Tymkin chipped in two points apiece during a game that the Knights never trailed.

“It wasn’t going great for us in the first period, they were pushing us back in our own end,” said Knights assistant coach Rick Steadman. “The guys just fought through that and got some pucks on net. When [Shane Collins] got that puck through for the first goal of the game, it got our confidence going and we just went from there.”
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Collins came to the Knights by way of the Barrie Colts, after Barrie claimed his rights on waivers from the Prince George Cougars of the Western Hockey League. The Colts then traded the Rosetown, Sask., native to London. He says he is glad to see pucks finding the back of the opposition net.

“The puck is finally starting to go in for me a little bit. I’ve had good chances before, but they just weren’t working out.”

READ MORE: Knights have completed trade with Kingston

The newest Knight nearly played a role in putting London back in front. Nathan Dunkley was acquired from Kingston along with a pair of draft picks on Thursday morning in exchange for Cliff Pu and he blasted a shot that deflected high over the net late in the second period.

The puck hit the end glass and bounced in front only to go off the glove of Liam Foudy and past rookie Colts goalie, Kai Edmonds. The goal was reviewed and disallowed.

That news didn’t quiet the Knights. Foudy pushed back and set up another go-ahead goal.

Jordan Kooy did his part all game in the London net, as he made 40 saves, several of them spectacular to help the Knights grab their third straight win to keep sole possession of fourth place in the Western Conference.

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How the goals were scored

Shane Collins fired home a slap shot from the right point to open the scoring in the first period. The Knights defenceman from Rosetown, Sask., took a feed from Cole Tymkin after a Billy Moskal faceoff win and scored his second goal as a Knight.

Barrie’s Jaden Peca tied the game 1-1 early in the second period as he knocked in his own rebound in front of the London net.

Knights’ forward, Richard Whittaker, played a bounce off the end boards beautifully for his second goal of the season in front of all kinds of friends and family to put London up 2-1 at exactly 8:00 of the second period.

Again, the Colts came back. Andrei Svechnikov took a feed in front and scored his 15th goal in 17 games for Barrie to make it 2-2.

After a Liam Foudy goal was disallowed, Foudy found Alec Regula in the Colts’ zone and he skated into the slot and fired a wrist shot off the post and in to put London back in front by a goal through 40 minutes.

The Knights capitalized on a third-period power play to take the only two-goal lead of the game. Tymkin tipped a Sam Miletic wrist shot into the Barrie goal at 14:23 of period three and it was 4-2 London.

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The Colts closed the gap one final time with a power-play goal of their own from former Erie Otter, T.J. Fergus, before Miletic sealed the game with an empty-netter with 30 seconds left.

READ MORE: Memorial service held in Toronto for hockey legend Johnny Bower

Dunkley’s debut

Nathan Dunkley officially went from the black and gold of the Frontenacs on Thursday night to the green and gold of the Knights. Dunkley has been averaging just over a point per game in his second OHL season. He had four goals and seven points in 11 playoff games for Kingston last year. In his first game for London, the Campbellford native had one shot on goal that took a big save from Kai Edmonds to keep out, went 4-for-5 on faceoffs and ended the game plus-1.

Attack add

At the beginning of the 2017-18 season, the thinking was that it was going to be a big year in Owen Sound. That hasn’t happened to this point. The Attack currently sits 8th in the Western Conference and they are closer to 9th than they are to 7th. Owen Sound did acquire Vancouver Canucks draft pick, Brett McKenzie from North Bay for Matthew Struthers, a 2nd round pick in 2020 and a 14th round pick in 2018. McKenzie has a keen ability to steal pucks and will provide offence and added leadership to the Attack.

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Parsons packs for Heat

Former London Knights goalie, Tyler Parsons was recalled this week by the Stockton Heat of the American Hockey League. In his first professional season, Parsons has been playing with Kansas City of the ECHL where he has posted 3.08 goals against average and a .907 save percentage. Parsons could see his first action Friday when Stockton hosts the San Antonio Rampage.

Knights still own second-longest winning streak

The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds saw their winning streak end at 23 games in Mississauga on Thursday night. Owen Tippett staked the Steelheads to a 3-0 lead with a natural hat trick in the first period, and although the ‘Hounds fought back and tied the game 3-3, Mississauga managed to win in a shootout on a goal by – Owen Tippett.

READ MORE: Knights sweep New Year’s series against Sarnia for fifth straight year

Up next

The Knights will travel to Sudbury to play the Wolves on Friday night. Sudbury is currently 19th out of 20 teams in the OHL standings and they are one of just two teams who have a losing record at home. The Flint Firebirds are the other. The pregame show begins at 6:30 p.m. on 980 CFPL, and on the Radioplayer Canada app.