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3/5/2006: LAKEHEAD - 4 @ LAURIER - 2

WOLVES DEFEAT HAWKS 4-2 TO WIN OUA SEMI FINAL SERIES

Mike Aylward
Sunday, March 05, 2006

The No. 7 Lakehead Thunderwolves skated to a 4-2 win over the No. 9 Laurier Golden Hawks Sunday night at the Waterloo Recreation Complex in Waterloo and the win gave the Wolves a 2-1 OUA Semi Final playoff series win; a berth in the CIS National Championships in Edmonton, and the opportunity to host the No. 2 McGill Redmen in the Queen’s Cup OUA Champonship Game next Saturday in Thunder Bay.  The Wolves were led by goaltender Chris Whitley who played excellent hockey and by defenseman Mike Jacobsen who scored two goals.  The Wolves other goals came from Tobias Whelan and Dan Speer.  Luke Girard and Richard Colwill scored for the Golden Hawks.

Lakehead Head Coach Pete Belliveau said his team never panicked during its many penalty kills.  “Without a doubt, our PK was the deciding factor, the first star, in tonight’s game.  The PK units hustled all night and Chris Whitley played very well in goal.”     

Laurier outshot Lakehead 26-23 in the game.  Lakehead took ten minor penalties to Laurier’s three and both of Lauriers goals were powerplay markers while Lakehead scored one with the man advantage.  Lakehead now has an overall 19-11-2 OUA mark (6-2 playoffs) and 23-17-4 overall, while Laurier is 16-11-3 in OUA play (3-3 playoffs) and 20-15-2 overall.

The first period saw the Hawks apply early pressure but Lakehead’s Whitley was strong.  Lakehead penalties were the story as Lakehead took the first three, including a 5-on-3, but the Wolves killed them off.  Laurier applied strong pressure after the 5-on-3 and Whitley was again strong; including a great pad save to deny the Hawks Mark Voakes at 17:00.  Lakehead took another minor at the end of the period giving them five minors to Laurier’s one in the first.  Shots were 9-3 Laurier in the first.

Laurier’s Voakes came close again at the 9:00 mark of the second when he rang the post.  Lakehead’s Whitley then made another big pad save off the Hawks Evan Weber right after.  Then it was Laurier’s turn to head to the sin bin.  Laurier took three consecutive minors giving Lakehead an extended 5-on-3.  The Wolves made it count at 11:46 when Mike Jacobsen fired a blast from the high slot that beat Laurier’s Justin Day cleanly; assisted by Erik Lodge and Jeff Richards.  The 5-on-3 continued but Day made two great saves to keep the Lakehead lead at 1-0 and sides evened up.

The Hawks stormed right back when Jeff Grandfield hit Luke Girard with a great long pass and Girard broke in on the breakaway and fired the puck past Whitley at 14:08.  However, an errant defensive zone pass by a Hawks d-man was stolen by Lakehead’s Tobias Whelan and he turned and fired it quickly past Day at 14:35.  Lakehead kept up the pressure and Day made two big saves off Matt Jacques at 15:19 and Jacobsen right after.  Lakehead’s Dan Speer then made it 3-1 at 16:47 when he fired a hard wrist shot past Day.  Lakehead then took a minor with a minute and a half left and the Hawk’s Evan Weber missed a glorious chance when he fired the puck over a yawning Wolves cage.  Shots were 16-5 Lakehead in the second.      

Laurier started the third on the powerplay and made it count on Colwill’s goal at 31 seconds, assisted by Girard and Nick Vergeer.  Lakehead’s Jason Lange fired a shot from the side at the 3:00 mark that was tipped wide by Day.  Day later made a great point blank save off Lakehead’s Richards at the 9:00 mark.  The Wolves then took two minors at the same time; but Whitley had to make a great breakaway save before Lakehead could touch the puck.  Whitley made three great saves during the 5-on-3 and Lakehead successfully killed them both off.  Lakehead then came close when Whelan fired a hard shot that was stopped nicely by Day and the Wolves Speer just missed connecting on the rebound. 

Lakehead’s Jason Lange did some excellent forechecking and fed the puck in the slot to Jacobsen who fired an NHL calibre cannon-blast that beat Day top corner at 13:26.  The other assist

SCORING SUMMARY
PERIOD 1:
No Scoring
Penalties: 03:22 Lakehead, Dan Speer (HS)09:12 Lakehead, Erik Lodge (HKG)15:40 Laurier, Courtney (CHG)16:06 Lakehead, Jeff Richards (HKG)18:40 Lakehead, Drew Kivell (INT)
PERIOD 2:
1. 11:46 Lakehead, Mike Jacobsen (Erik Lodge, Jeff Richards) PP 2. 14:08 Laurier, Girard (Fair , Grandfield ) 3. 14:35 Lakehead, Tobias Whelan (unassisted) 4. 16:47 Lakehead, Dan Speer (unassisted)
Penalties: 10:04 Laurier, Grover (INT)11:08 Laurier, Moher (HLD-ST)11:20 Laurier, Vergeer (HS)18:48 Lakehead, Dan Speer (HKG)
PERIOD 3:
5. 00:31 Laurier, Colwill (Girard , Vergeer ) PP 6. 13:24 Lakehead, Mike Jacobsen (Jason Lange, Michael Wehrstedt)
Penalties: 09:58 Lakehead, Mike Jacobsen (RO)09:58 Lakehead, Daniel Rogers (RO)15:22 Lakehead, Andrew Brown (CC)19:35 Lakehead, Jeff Richards (HKG)
Lakehead: Chris Whitley, 24 saves made, 2 goals against.Laurier: Day, 19 saves made, 4 goals against.