Lakehead Thunderwolves Mens Hockey
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2/24/2008: LAURIER - 3 @ LAKEHEAD - 7


Mike Aylward
Sunday, February 24, 2008

Lakehead netminder Chris Whitley and assistant captain Tobias Whelan led their No. 3 Thunderwolves to a very tough 7-3 win over the Laurier Golden Hawks Sunday night before a big crowd at the Fort William Gardens in Thunder Bay.  The win gives Lakehead a 2-1 series win and they now advance to the OUA West Finals against the Brock Badgers beginning on Wednesday night in St. Catharines.

Whitley was spectacular for the second night in a row; particularly in the third period when the Wolves, who took a lot of penalties, were under constant pressure from the Hawks.  Laurier outshot the Wolves 18-7 in the third; and Whitley was simply a wall in the Lakehead goal.  Although he allowed six goals, Laurier netminder Jeff MacDougald still made some excellent saves in the game.   

Whelan played one of his best games for the Wolves; scoring a natural hat trick for the Wolves in the second period; but also playing incredible defensive hockey against Laurier’s talented forwards.  Mike Wehrstedt played another great game for the Wolves, and was probably the best forward for the Wolves in the series. 

Wehrstedt picked up a goal with the other tallies coming from Andrew Brown, Mark Soares, and Brock McPherson.  Brown and McPherson also picked up one assist each.  Freshman forward Kris Hogg played a fantastic two-way game; picking up three assists while defenseman Matt Jacques looked back in form with two assists.

Craig Voakes and Matt Grennier led the Hawks with a goal and an assist each.  Jean-Michel Rizk scored the other Laurier goal.  Mark Voakes played a good game for the Hawks; and was dangerous each time on the ice.  Defenseman Adam Maccarone also played a good game for Laurier. 

Laurier outshot Lakehead 33-26 on the night.  Laurier had plenty of powerplay opportunities for the second night in a row but the Lakehead PK unit and Whitley were sharp and the Hawks only got one goal with the man advantage (1-9).  Lakehead was 2-5 on the powerplay.

Lakehead is now 2-1 in OUA playoff action (25-5-1 OUA overall) while Laurier finishes 3-3 in the OUA playoffs (19-12-3 OUA overall).

The Molson’s Three Stars were:
1) Lakehead: Tobias Whelan
2) Lakehead: Chris Whitley
3) Lakehead: Brock McPherson

The first period was very fast paced; much more fluid hockey than on Saturday night.  Lakehead got on the board first when captain Andrew Brown was set up beautifully by Kris Hogg at 2:22 on the powerplay.  The other assist went to Matt Jacques.  The Wolves put on pressure in the first half of the period but the Hawks picked up their play around the halfway mark and were rewarded when Craig Voakes scored a beautiful goal at 12:58; splitting the Lakehead defensemen with his speed and then beating Whitley with a nice deke.  The assists went to Tyler Grover and Nick Vergeer.  The Wolves Whitley made a big save right after; robbing Vergeer with a big flashing glove save.  The Wolves stormed right back up the ice and Laurier’s MacDougald made a huge save off Dan Speer.  Shots were 13-6 Lakehead in the first.

The Wolves exploded in the second period for four goals; beginning with Soares at 4:10, Whelan’s first at 5:02, then Whelan’s second at 8:02; a shorthanded marker followed by his third at 14:51 on the powerplay.  The Wolves were very efficient as they scored four goals on six shots on net as they were outshot 9-6 in the second.

The third period was the Whitley show as the Lakehead netminder made big save after big save.  However, the Hawks got on the board early on the powerplay when Grennier scored at the 55 second mark.  Laurier kept up the pressure and scored again at 7:03 on a nice shot by Jean-Michel Rizk through a crowd.  It seemed like the Hawks comeback was well underway but Mike Wehrstedt pounced on the Hawks defense after the ensuing faceoff and intercepted the puck in the Laurier zone and blasted the puck past MacDougald for the unassisted marker at 7:11. <

1. 02:22 Lakehead, Andrew Brown (Matt Jacques, Kris Hogg ) PP 2. 12:58 Laurier, C.Voakes (Grover , Vergeer )
Penalties: 01:04 Laurier, Girard (HLD)15:48 Lakehead, Brock McPherson (HS)19:24 Lakehead, Andy Zulyniak (TR)
3. 04:10 Lakehead, Mark Soares (Brock McPherson, Dan Speer) 4. 05:02 Lakehead, Tobias Whelan (Kris Hogg , Matt Jacques) 5. 08:02 Lakehead, Tobias Whelan (Kris Hogg ) SH 6. 14:51 Lakehead, Tobias Whelan (Kris Hogg , Andrew Brown) PP
Penalties: 05:57 Laurier, Grover (TR)06:27 Lakehead, Mark Soares (TR)08:02 Lakehead, Kris Hogg (USC)13:37 Laurier, Dmytruk (SPR (Double Minor))14:51 Laurier, Grover (RO)14:51 Lakehead, Andrew Brown (RO/USC)15:18 Lakehead, Pierre Marc Guilbault (USC)15:18 Laurier, Williams (USC)19:48 Laurier, Galibraith (HLD)19:48 Lakehead, Jordan Smith (SL/RO)
7. 00:55 Laurier, Grennier (M.Voakes , Dmytruk ) PP 8. 07:03 Laurier, Rizk (Peacock , Grennier ) 9. 07:11 Lakehead, Michael Wehrstedt (unassisted) 10. 19:21 Lakehead, Brock McPherson (Shandor Alphonso, Chris Whitley) EN
Penalties: 00:32 Lakehead, Shandor Alphonso (TR)08:14 Laurier, Moher (HS/10-Min Misconduct)12:47 Lakehead, Devin Welsh (SL)13:49 Lakehead, Jordan Smith (RO)13:49 Laurier, Girard (RO)14:47 Laurier, Vergeer (RO)14:47 Lakehead, Brad Priestlay (RO)15:35 Lakehead, Andrew Brown (TR)
Lakehead: Chris Whitley, 30 saves made, 3 goals against.Laurier: MacDougald, 18 saves made, 7 goals against.Referees: Kevin Kuluski (referee), Kevin Kuluski, Kevin Kuluski,