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Knights defeats IceDogs 2-1 to win OHL championship series in five games

NHL.com @NHL

LONDON, Ont. - Seth Griffith scored the eventual winner early in the third period as the London Knights defeated the Niagara IceDogs 2-1 on Friday to win the Ontario Hockey League championship series in five games.

It's the Knights' first J. Ross Robertson Cup since 2005 and just its second in franchise history.

London will kick off its Memorial Cup tournament starting May 18 in Shawinigan, Que., versus the defending CHL champion, and current QMJHL champion, Saint John SeaDogs.

Austin Watson had the other goal for London, while Knights goalie Michael Houser made 26 saves on 27 shots.

Tom Kuhnhackl replied for Niagara.

Watson opened the scoring at 12:34 of the second when he slipped the puck past IceDogs goalie Mark Visentin in a scramble in the crease.

London went up 2-0 at 1:48 into the third as Griffith buried a pass from Vladislav Namesnikov on a 2-on-1. For both Griffith and Watson it was their 10th of the post-season.

Watson, who had previously won an OHL title in 2009 with Windsor, earned MVP honours for the playoff ? the 99 Award, named after Wayne Gretzky.

Kuhnhackl 7:53 into the third period to make it a one goal game.

Niagara was 0-for-4 on the power play, including an inability to beat Houser during a pivotal four-minute advantage when it was still scoreless early in the second. The double minor had been assessed to Knights' defenceman Jarred Tinordi.

London was 0-for-3 on the power play.

Host Shawinigan has also qualified for Memorial Cup, while Edmonton and Portland are currently contesting the WHL finals.

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