Tonight the Barrie Colts will be at the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre to face the Owen Sound Attack for the second of six meetings this season. The first game saw the Attack, well, attack the Colts with a dominant 5-0 win over Barrie at BMC. Ovsjannikov started for Barrie but was pulled after allowing 3 goals on 23 shots. Propp would replace him but didn't help much allowing a pair of goals in the final frame. The Colts managed to generate 32 shots on Attack goaltender Michael McNiven but could not get anything past him. Owen Sound rookie Maksim Sushko had a great game scoring 2 goals and being named the first star of the game. He is just one player the Colts will need to find a way to keep off the score sheet if Barrie has any hopes of winning the second meeting between these two teams.
Owens Sound comes into tonight's game with a 2-1 overtime win this past Saturday night over the Niagara IceDogs. The 1 goal difference in this game hides the fact that Owen Sound dominated this game. In regulation they got 51 shots on goal (17 in each period) and only needed 4 in OT to end up getting the win on Petrus Palmu's 12th goal of the season. Many of the generated chances came from 5 power plays and though they got lots of pucks on net they were unable to get any goals with the man advantage. Though they couldn't find a way to score on the PP, they did a great job of staying out of the penalty box only taking one minor penalty in the game. The win came at the end of a bit of a losing streak for the team but helped them get a winning record over the last ten games with 6 wins and 4 losses. They will no doubt come into tonight with confidence though remembering they dominated Barrie in the last meeting and will look to improve their record against Barrie tonight to 2-0 on the season.
Barrie is coming off a pretty tough 4-1 loss against the Sudbury Wolves on Saturday. Despite out shooting the Dogs 35-28 and doing a good job of improving in the face off circle, Barrie just couldn't get many pucks past Zack Bowman who made 34 saves which earned him the first star of the game. A huge factor in Barrie's loss was their power play which looked pretty bad most of the night. The team got five looks with the man advantage but could not capitalize. Luckily, the other side of special teams saw them kill off all 3 penalty kills which is good but you need to score when you have that many looks on the PP. Darian Pilon scored the games winner at 11:24 in the first period. Tom Hedberg was the Colts one positive note in the game scoring the teams lone goal and his 2nd on the season. Giordano Finoro was also strong for the Colts. He managed to get 5 shots on goal, got a few really good chances and went 13 for 22 in the face off circle. Matt Brassard also got 7 shots on goal and had a pretty decent game. The Colts 6-7-2-0 and could really use the win tonight to help try and prevent this season from getting away from them.
Keys to Success: Barrie needs to score with the man advantage. They have only scored 15 goals with the man advantage on 84 power plays. They are doing a good job of generating shots and guys like Finoro and Hedberg have played well, they will need top guys like Stefano and James to get on the score sheet. That is not to say that those guys have played poorly because that couldn't be further from the truth. Both guys have consistently been the best players for the team but their effort needs to not only translate on the ice but also on the score sheet. If Barrie can have a solid night on special teams and do a good job in their end, there is no reason they can't get a big win tonight.
Players to Watch: Owen Sound leading scorer Petrus Palmu is always a guy you need to keep an eye on. Barrie will want to do the same if they hope to win tonight. On the Colts end, I am looking for a big game from captain Cordell James. Giordana Finoror as mentioned earlier has really been great for the team and has steeped up with the absence of Roy Radke and Ben Hawerchuk in the lineup. I wouldn't expect him to slow down tonight.
Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 tonight.