OHL Game Day Predictions for Saturday November 3, 2012
Pictured is Owen Sound's Gemel Smith, who scored twice and set up two others in the Attack's 6-3 victory in Erie last night. The two teams battle again tonight.
Dwayne Williams (@notsoheavyd on twitter) and I (@FrontsFocus on twitter) and I were 7 of 9 in our predictions. last night. Check out who we think will win tonight.
Owen Sound at Erie
This is not a misprint. The Attack defeated the Otters in Erie, 6-3 last night, and will play them again, in Erie tonight. Daniel Catenacci and Gemel Smith led the offense for the Attack with 2 goals and 2 assists each, last night. 15 year old Connor McDavid had a goal and an assist for the Otters, and Connor Brown had 2 goals. McDavid has the longest point scoring streak of the season going, currently at 15 games, with at least one point.
The Owen Sound Attack (11-2-0-2) were ranked 5th in the BMO CHL rankings, up from 6th last week. Led by recently anointed OHL goalie of the month of October, Jordan Binnington, the Attack are playing excellent hockey. Daniel Catenacci had a good month, as well, with 13 points in 9 games. Cameron Brace had 8 goals in October, to lead the club.
The Erie Otters (4-9-1-2) cannot to be taken lightly, despite the fact that they sit last in the Western Conference. Their first Import selection, Oscar Dansk, has played well in goal. Connor McDavid has 8 goals and 20 points in his first 15 games, as a 15 year old, which leads the team. Connor Brown is second in team scoring, with 19 points. The future is clearly bright for the Otters, as 10 of their players were born in 2005, or later.
My prediction Owen Sound 5 at Erie 1
Guelph at Niagara
The Guelph Storm (11-4-0-1) are ranked 9th in the BMO CHL rankings, down from 7th last week. Before last night's home game with the Generals, the Storm were involved in a penalty filled game with the Sault Ste Marie, which resulted in two Greyhounds being suspended, and Andrey Pedan suspended for kicking an opponent. The Storm lead the OHL in goal scoring this season. Their powerplay ranks 7th in the OHL, and their PK is 10th.
Guelph spotted the Generals a 1-0 lead, but "storm"ed back to beat them 4-1, to remain one point behind the Attack, in the Midwest Division. Garret Sparks was strong in the Storm net, stopping over 40 shots.
Niagara (10-6-1-0) shut out the Kitchener Rangers on home ice on Thursday night, in a very close game. Christopher Festarini recorded the shutout, and Ryan Strome scored the first goal, and assisted on the empty net goal, in the last minute of the game. Surprisingly, the Ice Dogs' powerplay is dead last in the OHL, and their penalty kill is 18th. Despite these stats, Niagara is only two points out of first place in the Eastern Conference, behind the Barrie Colts.
My prediction Guelph 3 at Niagara 2
Sarnia at Plymouth
Sarnia (8-7-0-1) and Plymouth (8-4-2-1) are playing the second half of a home and home. The Whalers defeated the Sting 3-2, in Sarnia, in a game in which Plymouth's goalie, Matt Mahalak was very good, stopping 32 of 34 shots.
The two teams entered last night's game, in Sarnia, tied with 17 points. The Whalers played one fewer game. Overager Craig Hottot, of the Sting, is in the midst of his 10 game suspension, and won't be eligible to return until Nov 16. Alex Galchenyuk leads the Sting, and sits 9th in the OHL, with 21 points in 15 games.
The matchup in this game to watch for is the Sting powerplay (ranked 1st in the OHL, prior to last night's game) and the Whalers' penalty killing (ranked 1st in the OHL). However, only 4 powerplays were awarded in last night's game and each team was 0-2.
With a single point, the Whalers would take over sole possession of the tight, West Division of the Western Conference. They are currently tied with the idle Windsor Spitfires.
My prediction Sarnia 2 at Plymouth 4
Ottawa at Sudbury
The 67's (5-8-0-2) are playing their second game of their northern swing. Last night, they beat the Soo 6-1, and were, once again, led by Tyler Graovac (2g) Sean Monahan (2a). Steven Janes had a goal and 2 assists. Keegan Wilson stopped 24 of 25 shots fired his way.
The Wolves defeated the Barrie Colts 6-4 on home ice. Each team scored two powerplay goals in this one. 6 different Wolves found the back of the net, and if not for a spectacular performance by Colts' netminder, Mathias Niederberger, the game could have been a huge blowout. The shots were 45-24 in favour of Sudbury.
Ottawa lost their last home game, to the Kingston Frontenacs, on Monday, 3-2 in a shootout. The 67s continue to play well on specialty teams, as they are 3rd in the league on the powerplay, and 9th killing penalties.
Last Sunday, Sudbury lost 3-2 in a SO in Mississauga. The Wolves deserved a better fate in that game, as Spencer Martin played an exceptional game in goal for the Steelheads. They outshot Mississauga 33-23. Defenseman, Frank Corrado is 3rd amongst defensemen in OHL scoring, with 17 points in 17 games. Two 67s' D are right behind him, as Cody Ceci and Jake Cardwell are tied for 4th in the OHL amongst defensemen, with 16 points in 15 games.
My prediction Ottawa 3 at Sudbury 5
Barrie at Sault Ste Marie
The Barrie Colts (11-4-0-1) were outplayed in every aspect of their 6-4 loss in Sudbury, last night, with the exception of in goal, as without Mathias Niederberger, they wouldn't have been in the game. The Colts did score three powerplay goals, but gave up two while killing penalties, as well. Barrie's powerplay is tops in the OHL, overtaking the Sting's PP last night, scoring at a 33% rate.
Sault Ste Marie (9-8-0-0) were beaten 6-1 on home ice by the Ottawa 67s. En route, the 67s scored on 3 of 4 powerplay opportunities. The Greyhounds sit dead last in the OHL in penalty killing, killing off penalties about 70% of the time, so they need to stay out of the box tonight, especially.
I don't believe that the Greyhounds will lose their 4th home game in a row tonight, despite the fact that they currently have 4 players suspended, and out of the lineup.
My prediction Barrie 3 at SSM 4
Belleville at Saginaw
The Belleville Bulls (8-4-2-0) played a strong road game in London last night, but fell short, in a 4-3 OT loss. Daniil Zharkov became the first Bull to record a multiple goal game this season, as he scored twice. The Bulls had a 2-0 lead past the mid way point in the hockey game. Two giveaways over the course of 40 seconds allowed the Knights to tie the game up. Malcolm Subban was terrific, again, for the Bulls, who took a point out of Budweiser Gardens, in London, for the first time since January of 2007.
Saginaw (5-8-2-0) sit last in the West Division, and one point out of the OHL's basement, just ahead of the Erie Otters, and the Peterborough Petes who each have 11 points. The Spirit are waiting for the Bulls, and haven't played since they lost 3-1 in Peterborough last Saturday night. Fourth year centre, Vincent Trocheck, a Panthers pick, leads the team, with 20 points in 15 games.
The Spirit are 3-3-0-0 on home ice this season, and need to play a defensive style of game to be successful. In their 5 wins this year, opponents have only scored a total of 5 goals.
The Bulls are very good at playing low scoring games, as well. They have only given up 11 goals in their 8 wins, this season. In fact, the Bulls have given up the fewest number of goals in the OHL this season, so far (34). Belleville doesn't mind long road trips, either, as they have already won this season in Sarnia, Plymouth, Brampton, and Sault Ste Marie.
My prediction Belleville 3 at Saginaw 2