Mark Sheifele made an impact in his return as the Barrie Colts downed the host Plymouth Whalers 6-3 on Friday in Ontario Hockey League play.
Scheifele, who was sent back to junior on Wednesday after playing four games with the Winnipeg Jets, suited up for Barrie for the first time since Jan. 10th and had a goal and an assist in the victory. In 31 games this season with the Colts, Scheifele has 23 goals and 51 points.
Anthony Camara and Andreas Athanasiou also had a goal and an assist apiece for the Colts (34-15-2), who have a four-point lead over the Belleville Bulls for first place in the Eastern Conference. Steven Beyers chipped in with three assists.
Mitchell Theoret, Josh McDonald and Zach Hall each scored once to round out Barrie's offence.
Vincent Trocheck scored twice for the Whalers (26-16-9), who held a 3-1 lead before giving up five unanswered goals. Ryan Hartman had the other goal.
Mathias Niederberger made 25 saves and is now tied with Oshawa Generals' goaltender Daniel Althsuller for the league lead in wins with 27. Matt Mahalak turned away 25 shots in defeat.
Barrie went 2 for 5 on the power play while Plymouth scored once on three chances with the man advantage.
Elsewhere in the OHL, it was: Barrie 6, Plymouth 3; Saginaw 6, Sarnia 2; Guelph 4, Kitchener 3 (SO); Owen Sound 4, London 3; Mississauga 4, Niagara 2; Erie 7, Oshawa 4 and Brampton 2, Sudbury 1 (SO).
Due to weather, Belleville versus Kingston and Windsor versus Ottawa were postponed. The 67's will host the Spitfires on Saturday Feb. 9th to make up the game while the Bulls makeup against the Frontenacs has yet to be announced.
At Plymouth, Mich., Hartman opened the scoring 3:44 into the first period, however Scheifele responded only 24 seconds later to tie the game.
Trocheck regained the lead for the Whalers at the nine-minute mark and then added a power-play goal at 15:50 to make it 3-1 after 20 minutes of play.
Theoret scored for Barrie midway through the second period to make it a one-goal game and Hall tied the game 3-3 midway through the third period.
Camara scored the eventual winner for the Colts at 15:15 and Athanasiou and MacDonald both scored empty-net goals to secure the come-from-behind victory.
Spirit 6 Sting 2
At Sarnia, Ont., Jimmy Lodge scored twice and Zach Bratina had a goal and two assists as Saginaw (25-21-6) downed the Sting (29-21-3) for its first win in three outings.
Storm 4 Rangers 3 (SO)
At Kitchener, Ont., Justin Auger and Jason Dickinson both scored in the shootout, Scott Kosmachuk scored two goals in regulation and Garret Sparks made 40 saves as Guelph (30-17-5) edged the division rival Rangers (31-15-7).
Attack 4 Knights 3
At London, Ont., Steven Janes scored twice, including the winner at 2:38 of the third period, and Cameron Brace had a goal and two assists as Owen Sound (33-15-4) downed the Knights (39-10-4), who lost in regulation for the first time in five games.
Steelheads 4 IceDogs 2
At Mississauga, Ont., Spenser Cobbold scored twice and Stuart Percy had a goal and two assists as the Steelheads (24-24-4) doubled up Niagara (25-24-4) to move within two points of the IceDogs for sixth in the Eastern Conference.
Otters 7 Generals 4
At Oshawa, Ont., Stephen Harper scored twice and Devin Williams turned away 42-of-46 shots as Erie (16-29-8) defeated the Generals (29-19-4) to halt a seven-game winless streak.
Battalion 2 Wolves 1 (SO)
At Sudbury, Ont., Francis Menard and Nick Paul both scored in the shootout and Matej Machovsky made 25 saves as Brampton (24-19-9) edged the Wolves (24-18-10) to move within one point of Sudbury for fourth in the Eastern Conference.