WINDSOR, Ont. - Taylor Hall scored twice in the third period and Philipp Grubauer made 27 saves as the Windsor Spitfires defeated the Plymouth Whalers 5-1 in their Ontario Hockey League Western Conference semifinal opener Thursday.
Despite a parade to the penalty box in the first period, the game's first two goals, both scored by Windsor, were scored at even strength.
Scott Timmins scored on a rebound off a turnaround shot from the point by Justin Shugg. Adam Henrique put Windsor up 2-0 with his third of the playoffs when he corralled a rebound from behind the Plymouth net and slide the puck behind a sprawling Whalers netminder Matt Hackett.
Ryan Ellis extended Windsor's lead to 3-0 with his first goal of the post-season a power-play blast from the point.
Ryan Hayes got the Whalers on the scoreboard with a wraparound effort at 15:23 of the second while on the power play.
Hall's seventh and eighth goals of the playoffs rounded out the scoring in the third period.
The game marked the return of Windsor left-winger Greg Nemisz after missing the last six weeks due to a deep cut on his leg that required 40 stitches to close. The 2008 first-round pick of the Calgary Flames played on a line with Eric Wellwood and Zack Kassian and picked up an assist on Ellis' goal.
Hackett made 35 saves in a losing effort.
The series resumes Saturday night in Plymouth.