THUNDER BAY – SPORTS – The Ontario Tech Ridgebacks entered the Thunderwolves lair Friday night to open the 2017-18 season.
The game got off to a fast start with end to end action in the first period.
The Ridgebacks went on the power-play at 4:10 with a high sticking call on #29 Jake Ringuette.
The T-Wolves killed off that penalty with ease and then got their own power-play as Anthony Latina was banished to the sin bin for two minutes. The Wolves got several scoring chances and managed to get off several good shots but Just after coming out of the penalty box Latina was tripped up on the way to a break-away giving the power-play back to the visitors.
Matt Alexander was hit with the hooking penalty.
Nick Renyard, starting in goal for the Thunderwolves has looked sharp in the first half of the opening period.
Shots on goal halfway through period one have the Ridgebacks 8 and Thunderwolves 2.
With 5:55 left in the first Jonathan Masters was tagged with a crosschecking penalty giving the Ridgebacks another power play.
#23 from Ontario Tech Malik Johnson had a golden opportunity, after a lot of digging, but Renyard stopped his shot keeping the scoreboard empty.
The first period ended scoreless.
Shots on Goal: Thunderwolves 7 – Ridgebacks 14
The period started with action against the boards as the hitting increased.
Malik Johnson took a hard hit from one of the Wolves. He lost his helmet. That led to an altercation that lead to #23 Faust from the Wolves for interference and an added two minustes for roughing. #37 from the Ridgebacks was also sent to cool off for two minutes for roughing.
The hitting continued, and the Wolves were shooting the puck more.
Daniel Del Paggio put the hard work together putting the puck behind Brendan O’Neill the Ridgeback’s netminder with a backhander than scooted through a crowd to give the Wolves the lead.
The period continued with the play getting a bit chippier.
Shots on Goal at the end of Two Periods: Thunderwolves 21 – Ridgebacks 20
Tight play continued at the third period got underway.
The end to end action provided entertaining hockey.
With 9:25 left the Wolves got a great scoring chance, and the puck launched into what the fans screamed was a goal – however the official waved it off. Daniel Del Paggio ended up fafe down at the side of the goal.
The Wolves went on the power play and the Ridgebacks ended up with Butler slashed in the face and #41 Jack Patterson was tagged with a high sticking penalty. The Wolves were on a 5-3 man advantage.
The Thunderwolves took full advantage of the power play scoring the second goal of the game with 7:35 left to play. #16 Dylan Butler put the marker into the twine.
Brennen Dubchak put the game further out of reach on a breakaway scoring his first of the season to give the Wolves a 3-0 lead with just over three minutes left.
Solid goaltending from Nic Renyard has been one of the highlights of this game. The T-Wolve Junior kept the Wolves in this game early and his confidence helped the team get their game going.
Shots on Net: Thunderwolves 36 – Ridgebacks 22
The teams have a return match at the Fort William Gardens on Saturday night – the puck will drop at 7PM.