Ryan Spooner kept the Peterborough Petes' playoff hopes alive with the most productive game of his young Ontario Hockey League career.
Spooner scored four goals and Jason Missiaen made 38 saves for his first shutout of the season as Peterborough blanked the Niagara IceDogs 6-0 on Saturday.
Spooner, the fifth-overall pick in the 2008 OHL draft, scored the game's first four goals to bring his rookie goal total to 29. The Kanata, Ont., native has 16 points (six goals, 10 assists) in his last 10 games and 57 points in 58 games this season.
With the win, the Petes (26-35-1-2) snapped a three-game losing skid and moved within one point of the Oshawa Generals and Sudbury Wolves for the Eastern Conference's final playoff spot.
Peterborough, which slipped into the playoffs in eighth spot last season after missing the playoffs in 2006-07, face the Generals in Oshawa on Sunday.
Elsewhere in the OHL, it was: Plymouth 8, Sault Ste. Marie 2; Belleville 5, Sudbury 2; Mississauga 4, Kingston 3; Saginaw 4, Owen Sound 3; and Kitchener 4, Erie 2.
At Peterborough, Ont., Justin Larson and Liam Heelis also scored for the Petes while Brett Theberge had three assists and Zack Kassian chipped in with a pair.
Jeremy Smith stopped 32 shots in goal for Niagara (26-29-4-6).
Whalers 8, Greyhounds 2
At Plymouth, Mich., Matt Caria's five points led the Whalers past Sault Ste. Marie.
Caria had a hat trick and two assists, while Beau Schmitz scored a power-play goal and added three assists for Plymouth (35-25-5-0), which has won five of its last six games. Brett Bellemore, AJ Jenks, Tyler Seguin and captain Chris Terry also scored.
James Livingston and Jake Carrick scored for the Greyhounds (19-42-2-2).
Bulls 5, Wolves 2
At Belleville, Ont., P.K. Subban had a four point night, with two goals and two assists, as the Bulls beat Sudbury.
Bryan Cameron had a goal and two assists and Luke Pither scored and added an assist for Belleville (44-17-2-2).
Frankie Santini and Eric O'Dell replied for the Wolves (25-33-2-4), who have lost three straight.
Majors 4, Frontenacs 3
At Mississauga, Ont., Jordan Mayer scored a pair of goals as he and linemates William Wallen and Corey Bureau combined for six points to guide the Majors over Kingston.
Wallen contributed a goal as well as a pair of assists and Bureau picked up one assist as the Majors (37-25-1-2) won for the seventh time in their last 10 games. Mike Pelech had the other Mississauga goal.
Andris Dzerins, Brian Lashoff and Ethan Werek scored for the Frontenacs (16-38-6-3), who built up a 2-0 first-period lead before giving up four goals in a row to Mississauga.
Spirit 4, Attack 3
At Owen Sound, Ont., captain Chris Chappell scored the winner as Saginaw edged the Attack.
Daniel Pachis, Tyler Murovich and Barry Sanderson also scored for the Spirit (35-23-3-4).
Steven Shipley had a goal and an assist, while Joey Hishon and Grant McGee added goals for Owen Sound (25-25-7-7).
Rangers 4, Otters 2
At Kitchener, Ont., Jason Akeson scored twice and added an assist as the Rangers defeated Erie.
Chris MacKinnon had a goal and an assist and Micky Sartoretto also scored for Kitchener (25-35-3-2).
Zack Torquato had a goal and an assist and Greg McKegg added a goal for the Otters (32-29-3-1).