Sam O’Reilly’s goal with 17.5 seconds remaining in regulation time gave the London Knights a 3-2 victory over the Owen Sound Attack on Saturday at the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre.
With time winding down, Easton Cowan carried a puck into the Owen Sound end and then elected to take a few more seconds off the clock by skating back into centre ice. That caused some confusion in the defensive coverage of the Attack. Cowan was able to feed a pass across to O’Reilly on right wing. He crossed the Owen Sound blue line with a lane to the net and the rookie London forward wristed in his fifth goal of the season for the game-winner. O’Reilly had a goal and an assist and was named the game’s first star.
For the second game in a row, Denver Barkey started the scoring as London buzzed around the Attack zone late in the opening period. A good pinch by Alec Leonard from the left point freed up a puck to Ruslan Gazizov and he slid a pass to Barkey on the right side of the zone. Barkey got a quick shot away and it beat Owen Sound goalie Carter George for a 1-0 London lead.
Owen Sound tied the game on a power play in the second period as they cashed in on their fifth straight man advantage going back to Friday night against the Sarnia Sting when they were a perfect 4-for-4.
The Attack worked the puck around in Knights territory and eventually Minnesota Wild prospect Servac Petrovsky snapped a shot into a tiny space above the shoulder of London goaltender Owen Willmore and under the crossbar to tie the game 1-1.
Just 1:58 later Colby Barlow converted a pass right at the goal mouth to put Owen Sound ahead 2-1 at the 10:00 mark of the middle period.
Cowan tied the game with his sixth goal in nine games at 12:22 of the third as his shot deflected off the stick of Madden Steen and past George. Cowan now has seven points in his past three games with two goals and five assists.
Willmore made a massive save going from his left to his right to rob James Petrovski as he snuck in off the left point with under two minutes remaining in regulation time. That gave the opportunity for the Knights to get the winner and they did. The Knights have now won their past three games by the same 3-2 score.
Sawyer Boulton and Jackson Stewart engaged in a fight that resulted in match penalties for both players. The game officials ruled that it was a “staged fight.”
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The Attack outshot London 40-34.
Owen Sound was 1-for-4 on the power play.
The Knights were 0-for-2.
Former Knights head scout John McDonald passes away
John McDonald had the ability to find hockey players. He was London’s head scout beginning in 2000 when Mark and Dale Hunter purchased the Knights. McDonald had an eye for talent that extended not just to what a player did as a player, but for who he was as a person away from the game. He spent 41 years in total scouting in the Ontario Hockey League. McDonald drafted Dave Bolland in the first round of the OHL Priority Selection. He drafted Mark Hunter first overall while working with the Brantford Alexanders in 1979. McDonald was inducted into the Don Brankley London Knights Hall of Fame in 2020 and spent his career outside of hockey as a police officer in Ottawa. McDonald was 92.
London will complete three games in three nights on Sunday at 6 p.m., at Budweiser Gardens against the Kitchener Rangers.
The Rangers have been one of the biggest surprises this season. Despite having their roster racked by graduation, Kitchener has had the top three and at times even the top four scorers in the OHL at various points over the first month of the schedule.
Carson Rehkopf leads the OHL in goals with 17 and points with 28 through just 15 games this year.
Coverage will begin at 5:30 p.m., on Sunday on 980 CFPL, at 980cfpl.ca and on the Radioplayer Canada app.
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