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Smith's 50-save shutout helps Niagara cut Bulls series lead to 2-1

NHL.com @NHL

When the Belleville Bulls came shooting on Sunday, Jeremy Smith had the answers - all 50 of them, to be precise.

Smith stopped 50 shots to lift the Niagara IceDogs back into their Eastern Conference semifinal series with a 2-0 victory over Belleville in Ontario Hockey League playoff action.

The Bulls, who hold a 2-1 lead in the series, outshot Niagara by a 50-24 margin, including 18-6 in the third period, but Smith held strong to earn his first career OHL shutout.

Smith has been on his toes all series as the IceDogs have been outshot by Belleville in all three games, allowing at least 45 Bulls shots in each contest. The 19-year-old Smith made 41 saves in game one on Thursday's 4-3 loss and stopped 45 on Friday in a 5-4 defeat - both in overtime.

Smith faced over 40 shots in five of Niagara's seven games against the Ottawa 67's in the first round.

Elsewhere in the OHL, it was: Windsor 8, Plymouth 1; London 4, Saginaw 1; and Mississauga 5, Brampton 1.

At Belleville, Ont., Chris DeSousa scored both IceDogs goals - the first with under six minutes remaining in the third period and the second into an empty net with seven seconds left.

Mike Murphy made 22 saves for Belleville, which had not been shut out since October 10, 2008 in a 1-0 loss to the Windsor Spitfires.

The series shifts to St. Catharine's, Ont., for game four on Tuesday.

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Spitfires 8, Whalers 1

At Windsor, Ont., Adam Henrique, Andrei Loktionov and Dale Mitchell all scored twice as the Spitfires hammered Plymouth to take a 2-1 lead in their Western Conference semifinal series.

Greg Nemisz and Taylor Hall also scored for Windsor. Beau Schmitz, with is second of the post-season, had the Whalers' only goal.

The tone of the game became more physical after Plymouth's Kaine Geldart received a five-minute match penalty six minutes into the third period for a head check on Loktionov, who did not return to the game. Fights broke out on four separate occasions after the incident.

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Knights 4, Spirit 1

At London, Ont., Nazem Kadri scored second game-winner of the playoffs on a power play midway through the second period as the Knights pushed Saginaw to the brink of elimination.

Phil Varone, Matt Clarke and Daniel Erlich also scored for London, which leads the Spirit 3-0 in their Western Conference semifinal series and will have a chance to complete the sweep Tuesday in Saginaw, Mich.

Joe Underwood scored the lone goal for the Spirit, who swept the Guelph Storm in the conference quarter-finals.

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Majors 5, Battalion 1

At Brampton, Ont., Michael Pelech had a goal and two assists, while Kaspars Daugavins set up three goals as Mississauga solved Thomas McCollum to beat the Battalion.

J.P. Anderson stole the show for the Majors, stopping 35 of 36 shots, while Brett Fleming, Jordan Mayer, Kale Kerbashian and William Wallen all added goals for Mississauga.

Anthony Peluso scored on a power play at 9:56 of the second period for Brampton, which leads the series 2-1. McCollum, who only allowed one goal in the first two games of the series, finished with 18 saves.

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