We took a beating on our predictions yesterday ... hopefully this go a little better today.
Dwayne Williams (twitter @notsoheavyd) John Duncan (@FrontsFocus)
** Pictured is Seth Griffith from the London Knights who had a hat trick in London’s home opener on Friday night.**
London at Guelph
London handled the Erie Otters easily on Friday night in their home opener. They burst out with 5 goals on 21 shots in the second period en route to a 8-2 drubbing of the Otters. Seth Griffith had a hat trick – Newcomer Zadarov had a tilt with Johnny McGuire and Ryan Rupert scrapped with Donney in the first period. Kevin Baille turned away 26 of the 28 shots put his way.
Guelph had a seesaw match with the visiting Saginaw Spirit on Friday night eventually pushing ahead in overtime for the 4-3 victory. Justin Auger tied things up in the last portion of the third period. Jason Dickson had a good offensive game with 2 goals – Andrey Pedan with the other marker. Defenceman Matt Finn was solid moving the puck up and earned 3 assists. Goaltender Garret Sparks will have to be more polished for the Storm to stay in this game.
My prediction London 5 Guelph 2
Barrie at Mississauga
The Colts were handled by the Frontenacs on Friday night in Kingston’s home opener. Mathias Niederberger stopped 31 of 34 shots sent his way. Barrie was 1/6 on the powerplay in this penalty filled affair (3 majors for each team). Mark Scheifele had the lone goal at the 14:14 mark on the third period. They will not need to generate much more offence to win this game though.
Mississauga had their home opener on Friday night vs. Kitchener. The Steelheads were close but did not generate any results on the scoreboard after firing 25 shots on the Rangers net. Diodati had a fight with Iafrate in the first period. Spencer Martin will be just as busy as he was on Friday night with Barrie’s quality offensive lineup.
My prediction Barrie 2 Mississauga 1
Kitchener at Sarnia
Kitchener continues it’s road show (due to renovations at their home arena) with a visit to Sarnia. Kitchener is coming off an impressive 3-0 win at Mississauga on Friday night. John Gibson held the fort and earned the shutout with 25 saves. Goal scorers were Puempel(empty net) and Faska with a pair (one was an empty netter with 26 seconds left).
Sarnia’s home opener was ruined by the Belleville Bulls on the same night. Their only goal in the 3-1 loss came early in the third period by defenceman Kuzmyk. JP Anderson stopped 24 of 26 pucks sent his way. They Sting will have to generate more offence to stay in this game.
My prediction Kitchener 4 Sarnia 2
Brampton at Sudbury
Brampton started the season with one point to their credit after a 2-1 shootout loss to the Niagara Icedogs. The Battalion played a predictable solid defensive game and were still able to generate many quality offensive chances from their pesky forechecking. Brampton limited the vistors to only 19 shots in the game – 5 in the third period. Abraham Spencer had the lone goal and was also one of the three players in the overtime shootout.
Sudbury hosted the Oshawa Generals on Friday night and were able to stay ahead at the end – capitalizing on a rare powerplay empty net combination in the dying seconds of the game to make the score seem more dominant than the flavour of the contest (ie. it certainly felt like a 3-2 game the whole way). Import pick Dominik Kubalik would pay dividends with 2 goals in his first game. Veterans Kantor and Pancel would chip in a goal and an assist each as well. Tender Joel Vienneau would anchor the team with 28 of 30 shots stopped in the game. If Sudbury can muster an equal level of offence they should be successful in this match up.
My prediction Brampton 2 Sudbury 4