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1/25/2004: LAKEHEAD - 6 @ LAURIER - 3

RICHARDS HAT TRICK LEADS WOLVES OVER HAWKS

Mike Aylward
Sunday, January 25, 2004

The No. 4 Lakehead Thunderwolves defeated the Laurier Golden Hawks 6-3 Sunday night in Waterloo, Ontario.  Lakehead was led by Jeff Richards who recorded a hat trick and Murray Magill and Jason Lange who each added two assists.  Defenseman Matt Kenny continued his strong all-around play for the Wolves again; playing great defense and generating a lot of offensive chances for the Wolves.  Chris DiUbaldo led the Golden Hawks with two goals.  The win gave Lakehead its third win in three nights on its tough road trip to Southern Ontario. 

Lakehead's record rises to 13-2-2 (20-4-3 overall) while Laurier's record drops to 8-7-2 in conference play and 12-10-2 overall.  The win also puts Lakehead two points back of No. 2 Western and makes next weekend's two-game series very crucial for both teams in the battle for first in the OUA Far West Division.      

Lakehead opened the scoring at 3:28 on the powerplay, when Kris Callaway beat Laurier netminder Justin Day with a hard shot from the slot.  The assist went to Jason Lange and Craig Priestlay.  Laurier replied at 9:04 during a two-man advantage, when Matt Grennier beat Lakehead's Grant McCune with a low hard slapshot.  The assists went to Ryley Moher and Chris DiUbaldo.  Lakehead outshot Laurier 13-7 in the first. 

In what might have been the turning point of the game, Lakehead's Grant McCune stopped Laurier's Grennier on a rare penalty shot at 1:51 of the second.  Jeff Richards put Lakehead up at 6:25, when he was set up beautifully by Joel Scherban.  Lakehead made it 3-1 at 12:30, when Steve Rawski scored; assisted by Mike Wehrstedt and Lange.  Jeff Richards made it 4-1 for the Wolves at 16:24 when he whacked in a loose puck during a goalmouth scramble in front of Laurier's Day.   Laurier's Chris DiUbaldo blasted a high shot past screened Lakehead netminder McCune at 19:59 to make it 4-2 at the buzzer.  The assists went to George Hwodeky and Rob Dmytruk.  Lakehead outshot Laurier 18-10 in the second.

Laurier kept the momentum going and struck quickly at 2:25 of the third when DiUbaldo scored his second of the game, assisted by Bryan Sansom.  The Hawks kept up the pressure but Lakehead's McCune kept them at bay.  Lakehead's Tyler Williamson made it 5-3 at 5:22, converting a beautiful give and go play with Matt Kenny.  Laurier then had a golden opportunity when they had their second two-man advantage of the game but McCune again came up big and then Laurier took a minor of their own to nullify the chance.  The Thunderwolves then went on a 5-on-3 of their own but Laurier netminder Day made some good stops to deny them a goal.  Lakehead then went on the pk for the rest of the game.  Laurier pulled Day from the net to try to get a goal McCune stood tall in the Wolves goal.  Lakehead's Richards got his hat trick when he potted an empty netter at 19:24 to put the game away.  The assist went to Magill.  Laurier outshot Lakehead 14-9 in the third while the Wolves outshot the Hawks 40-31 on the game.

Lakehead Head Coach Pete Belliveau was very happy with result.  "It was a great victory; our third win in three nights on the road!  We relaxed a little at the end of the second and early in the third and let them get back in.  So, Williamson's goal was very big to give us the 5-3 lead.  Matt Kenny played incredible this weekend; he's been playing the best hockey of his Lakehead career over the past six games and has been our best defenseman.  We're playing with heart and passion again and that is what I like to see.  Now, we've got to bear down and get ready for next weekend against Western."         

Lakehead sees action next weekend when they host archrivals Western in a two game series in what is always the most anticipated series of the year in Thunder Bay.  

Scoring Summary:

First Period:
1) Lakehead: 3:28:  Callaway from Lange and Priestlay.
2) Laurier

SCORING SUMMARY
PERIOD 1:
No Scoring
Penalties: none
PERIOD 2:
No Scoring
Penalties: none
PERIOD 3:
No Scoring
Penalties: none