GAME PREVIEW; Jan. 20/17 – SSM @ FL
After a quick trip down I-75, the Soo Greyhounds wrap-up their home-and-home series with the Flint Firebirds TONIGHT (7 PM) at the Dort Federal Event Center.
It’s the first of two consecutive games this weekend on the road for the Hounds.
Today we look at some of the news and notes surrounding the two West Division clubs, along their 5th meeting of the season.
Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (31-10-2-1, 65 points) @
Flint Firebirds (21-18-1-3, 46 points)
IT’S BEEN MILLER’S TIME
One of two overages on the Greyhounds roster, DAVID MILLER has recently tied his offensive output (29 pts) from one season ago.
The Burlington, ON native enters tonight’s game with 5 goals and 2 assists in his last 5 games played including three points this past Wednesday Night.
In the face-off circle Miller headed into the Christmas break with the top percentage in the entire OHL and to-date now has won 220 of 368 face-offs taken, a success rate of 59.8%.
For the 5th time this season, the Greyhounds and Firebirds go head-to-head.
Thus far the locals have won a pair of contests in regulation, while Flint has taken a shootout and overtime contest.
Of note, it has been the visiting team winning each of the previous meetings so far.
SOL 4-5 Jan. 18 @ SSM
After Kole Sherwood opened the game’s scoring with his 23rd goal of the year the Hounds notched three unanswered goals (Miller, White, Speers) to have a 3-1 lead after the first; Miller increased it to 4-1 1:06 into second; Flint then scored 3 goals in 4:13 of third period to tie the game before winning in Round 5 of a shootout
W 5-0 Dec. 28 @ FL
Hounds outshot Flint 10-4 in the first period and had a 1-0 lead thanks to a goal by Zach Senyshyn; After increasing their lead in the second, Kopacka, Senyshyn and Hayton finished off the offense in the shutout victory; Hounds held Flint to just 14 shots
W 5-3 Nov. 5 @ FL
Flint scored first before the Hounds built a 4-1 lead after first period thanks to goals by Senyshyn, Frost, Martin & Verbeek; Hounds outshot Flint 38-33
OTL Oct. 21 @ SSM
Hounds battled back from three separate deficits before Mathieu Henderson scored OT winner with 18 seconds left; Frost, MacIntyre, Verbeek had SSM goals; Hounds allowed 37SA
The season series concludes on Saturday, February 11 (7:07 PM) at the Essar Centre in Sault Ste. Marie.
POINTS IN THE PLAYOFF PICTURE
Flint enters tonight’s game with points in 6 of their last 7 contests.
While holding their standing in the Western Conference playoff picture, the Firebirds have put together a record of 4-1-1-1 in their last seven games.
They have 36 goals for and 25 goals against during that span.
TOP OFFENSIVE TRIO
• Bobby MacIntyre (18-39-57); 5GWG
• Morgan Frost (13-26-39); 16 PP Pts
• Zach Senyshyn (27-11-38); 163 SOG
• Ryan Moore (23-33-56); 3SHG
• Kole Sherwood (23-28-51); 170SOG; 3GWG
(scored first period hat trick and 5-goal game last week @SAG)
• Nicholas Caamano (19-23-42); 8 PP Pts
MOVING UP TO #2
Earlier this week the CHL (Canadian Hockey League) released their weekly Top 10 Rankings.
The Hounds advanced a pair of positions and became the top OHL nationally ranked team, sitting in the #2 spot behind the WHL’s Regina Pats.
It’s 7th time this season the Hounds have received the Top 10 honours and the complete listing can be found HERE.
FOUR HOUNDS RANKED FOR 2017 NHL ENTRY DRAFT
NHL Central Scouting released it’s Midterm Rankings for the 2017 NHL Entry Draft earlier this week and it included four members of the Greyhounds.
CONOR TIMMINS (#26), MORGAN FROST (#29) and ANTHONY DEMEO (#161) were among those ranked for North American skaters while MATTHEW VILLALTA (#14) was ranked for North American goaltenders.
The 2017 NHL Entry Draft takes place June 23-24 in Chicago, IL.
The Rock 101 pre-game show with Gerry Liscumb Jr. begins starting at 6:30 PM. You can hear the action by tuning your FM dial to 101.3 or listen online HERE.
This game IS NOT televised.
For all the stats throughout the game check out the OHL boxscore HERE.
Photo by James Egan Photography