North Bay Battalion hang on to beat London Knights

A short-handed goal by Justin Ertel with just under nine minutes remaining in the third period held up as the game winner in a 4-3 North Bay Battalion victory over the London Knights on Friday at Budweiser Gardens.

Things got interesting in the final minute as the Knights pressed to tie when back-to-back Battalion penalties gave London a 6-on-3 man advantage with their net empty. Twice in the final 15 seconds the Knights were able to get the puck to Logan Mailloux and he was able to shoot but North Bay kept the puck out of their net and ended a three-game London winning streak.

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Jackson Edward opened the scoring with his first OHL goal on a wrist shot from just inside the blue line at the 9:07-mark of the first period.

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The Battalion tied the game on a 5-on-3 power play as over-age forward Kyle Jackson blasted a one-timer past Zach Bowen who was very impressive in his first home ice start for the Knights.

Ben Bujold took a pass from Easton Cowan just 27 seconds later, went flying down the ice short-handed and put a shot over the blocker of DiVincentis for his first goal of the season and a 2-1 London lead going to the dressing room after 20 minutes.

North Bay tied the game on another 5-on-3 man advantage in the second period on a very similar play. Former Windsor Spitfire Kyle McDonald did the blasting that time from the left side of the London net for his third goal of the season.

George Diaco put the Knights ahead with his power play goal with 59 seconds remaining in the period. He took the time to look at the net from the top of the left circle and scored his seventh goal of the year and London led 3-2.

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Bowen may have saved his best stop of the game for the final second of the second period as Seattle Kraken prospect and former 1st overall OHL selection Ty Nelson raced down the left wing and cut to the right net with a backhand shot that Bowen stopped with his left leg. Nelson managed to get a rebound shot away and Bowen stretched his left leg out even further to make the save and keep London ahead going into the third.

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Nikita Tarasevich tied the game on a shot from the left side of the Knights zone just 1:40 into the final 20 minutes and Ertel scored the eventual game-winner unassisted seven minutes and one second later.

Easton Cowan chipped in two assists for London.

The teams were even in shots at 28-28.

Both clubs also had five power play opportunities.

The Battalion scored twice on the man advantage and the Knights scored once.

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Dickinson leads rookie defencemen

At just 16 years of age Sam Dickinson of the Knights is making himself noticed all over the ice. Dickinson has moved into a tie with Soo Greyhounds defenceman Andrew Gibson for most points by a rookie defenceman. Both players have two goals and four assists. Dickinson gets an edge on the leaderboard having played one fewer game.

Couture nets his 300th

When Logan Couture scored to give the San Jose Sharks a 2-1 lead over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Oct. 27 he hit the 300-mark for goals in his 14th season in the National Hockey League. All kinds of Ontario towns and cities can call themselves Couture’s hometown. He was born in Guelph, lived in Birr, played his minor hockey in Lucan and was close enough to London, all his life to be called a Londoner. He has been a part of several charitable causes in the London area over the years. Couture played his OHL career with the Ottawa 67s.

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Up next

London will meet the Sudbury Wolves on Saturday night at 7 p.m. at Budweiser Gardens.

The Knights and Wolves have not seen each other since the 2019-20 season when London swept the two-game season series by winning 1-0 in Sudbury, Ont., and 4-1 on home ice.

Coverage will begin at 6:30 p.m. on 980 CFPL at and on the Radioplayer Canada app.

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