Owen Sound, Ont. – First-year forward Braeden Kressler scored his first-career OHL goal and both Riley McCourt and Ty Dellandrea (Dallas Stars) found twine for the visiting Firebirds in Owen Sound Saturday. It was the hometown Attack, however, who skated to the 7 – 3 victory. Special teams played a big role, as the OHL’s top-ranked power play was given three opportunities and they were able to convert on two of them.
First, Matthew Philip scored his second of the season to give the Attack the early lead just 63 seconds into the game. Carter Robertson carried across the blue line and dished to Brady Lyle on the right-wing side. Lyle carried low into the right circle before sending a cross-ice pass to Philip for the back-door play. Then, Kaleb Pearson logged his third of the campaign at 4:24 when he redirected a slapshot in front of netminder Cavallin. Lyle took the initial slap shot through traffic and Barret Kirwin was credited with the second helper.
Riley McCourt scored his second goal in as many games to cut the deficit to one at 10:56 with the man-advantage. Ty Dellandrea passed the puck from low in the left-wing circle to Cody Morgan centered high inside the blue line. Morgan found McCourt on the right who sniped a wrister into the near top corner over the shoulder of goaltender Mack Guzda.
The Attack scored a short-handed marker at 16:08 to reclaim the two-goal advantage. Adam McMaster scored from the right-wing circle off a two-on-one breakaway with Aidan Dudas (Los Angeles Kings). Lyle picked up the second assist on McMaster’s first tally of the season.
First-period shots favored Owen Sound 13 – 12. The Firebirds dominated in the face-off circle 20 – 8.
The captain Ty Dellandrea scored his second of the year at 4:51 of the middle frame to pull back within one. Jack Wismer made the cross-crease pass to create the opportunity with an extra attacker on the ice on a delayed penalty call. Emmet Pierce was credited with the second assist.
Just past the midway point of period two, Matthew Philip scored his third of the season on Owen Sound’s first power-play opportunity of the contest. Kirill Nizhnikov and Robertson assisted on the tally. After initially being waived off, the play was reviewed for possible goaltender interference but was overturned by the officials. Then, Nizhnikov scored his second of the campaign at 14:03 to give the Bears a 5 – 2 advantage. He shot from the top of the left circle and found twine far-side, assisted by Ethan Burroughs and McMaster.
Flint outshot the Attack 12 – 10 in the second period for the 40-minute advantage of 24 – 23. The ‘Birds also held the edge 31 – 22 in face-offs through two periods. The scoreboard, however, showed the home team on top 5 – 2.
Freshman forward Braeden Kressler, Flint’s second-round pick in the 2019 OHL Priority Selection, scored his first career OHL goal at the two-minute mark of the third period. Brennan Othmann sent a heads-up pass from a scrum in the right corner that found Dellandrea at the inner edge of the right circle. The captain settled the puck briefly before launching a quick pass aimed at the near-side, where Kressler redirected the shot past the sliding netminder Guzda.
The Attack struck again at 8:04 to reclaim the three-goal advantage. Popov netted his second of the season, assisted by Dudas and Sam Sedley. Their seventh goal came off the stick of Dudas, his second goal of the season and third point of the night, at 10:08 on the power play. McMaster and Popov earned the assists.
Owen Sound finished with a 34 – 32 edge in shots. They also closed the gap in face-offs during the final frame, finishing only 38 – 36 in draws.
Next Home Game:
The Firebirds return to Flint to host the Peterborough Petes on Saturday, October 12th. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. at the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center.
For the fifth-straight year, the Firebirds are teaming up with the McLaren Flint Foundation to raise money to help in the fight against breast cancer. Because the pink ribbon is an international symbol of breast cancer awareness, the Firebirds are asking all fans to wear pink to the game. Fans can bid on game worn Flint Firebirds’ player jerseys in a live auction that will take place immediately following the game. All proceeds will be donated to breast cancer research through the McLaren Flint Foundation. Additionally, the first 400 women will receive a free Pink Carnation courtesy of Bentley Florist. The Firebirds will also have Pink Out merchandise at the Firebirds’ merchandise store, The Birds Nest, inside the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center.
Single game tickets for all Firebirds games are $12 for Bronze, $16 for Silver, $20 for Gold and $26 for VIP seating (Seating Chart). All seats are reserved / assigned seating. Fans can purchase tickets by calling (810) 744-0580, in-person at the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center Box Office or online at ticketmaster.com here.
Photo Credit: Todd Boone / Flint Firebirds
For more information:
Director of Broadcasting & Communications
Flint Firebirds Hockey Club