Hornets sting Patriots in Game 3

Section: 
Sports

By Josh Howald

The Alliston Hornets had just too much firepower for the Mount Forest Patriots Sunday night.

The Hornets absolutely crushed Mount Forest 8-1 at home in Game 3 of the Provincial Junior Hockey League's North Conference final. Alliston had a chance to sweep the Patriots last night (Tuesday) in Mount Forest. If the Pats survived, they will have to travel to Alliston for Game 5 Friday night.

Games 1 and 2 of this series were close. The Hornets took the series opener 4-2 at home. Mount Forest looked to have Game 2 under control with a 2-1 lead late in the third period, but the Hornets tied the game with 1:29 left in the third period and then won in overtime on a goal from Drake Board.

Game 3 was not close.

Things looked promising for the Pats early on. Blair Butchart opened the scoring eight minutes in, but back-to-back power play goals from Mackenzie Flewelling only two minutes apart late in the period turned the tide. Board and Devon Gilham scored in the second period to make it 4-1 and the wheels really fell off in the third. Gilham made it 5-1 and Ryan Swallows made it 6-1 three minutes later. That was all for Mount Forest goaltender Max Oullette. But it made no difference as Mount Forest got into penalty trouble and allowed back-to-back power play goals. Ryan McReynolds scored both of them, and the Hornets finished with four PP goals. The Patriots, meanwhile, were 0-for-7 on the power play.

While things looked pretty bleak for the PJHL Pollock Division champions heading into Game 4 last night, there will be some hope. They already have clawed out of a 3-0 hole on this playoff run. They battled back to beat Mitchell in seven games after losing the first three. This will be a significantly tougher task.

The defending Schmalz Cup champions from Ayr also hold a 3-0 lead in their quarter-final series against the Grimsby PeachKings. In the Eastern Conference, Port Hope leads Lakefield 2-1 and in the West, the Essex 73s hold a 2-1 lead on Dorchester.

Update: Mount Forest won Game 4 at home and will travel to Alliston Friday night for Game 5 of this series.