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Strome gives OHL 1-0 lead after 20 minutes

by Arpon Basu /

New York Islanders prospect Ryan Strome of the Niagara Ice Dogs gave the team representing the Ontario Hockey League a 1-0 lead against Team Russia after the first period of Game 4 of the Canadian Hockey League Subway Super Series in Sarnia, Ontario.

Strome, the OHL's top scorer with 37 points in 21 games, started the play with a long stretch pass out of his own end to the Russian blue line before skating hard to the offensive zone. After Ottawa Senators prospect Matt Puempel corralled a loose puck, he found the streaking Strome alone in the slot for a one-time slap shot that trickled through Russian goaltender Andrey Vasilevskiy at 9:47 of the first.

That goal came about 30 seconds after Minnesota Wild prospect Tyler Graovac of the Ottawa 67s hit the goal post to the left of Vasilevskiy, a Tampa Bay Lightning first round draft pick last June. Vasilevskiy then made a stop on Washington Capitals draft pick Tom Wilson of the Plymouth Whalers to keep the game scoreless, although it was short-lived.

The OHL selects had a glorious chance to take an early lead in the game when Russia's Mikhail Naumenkov and Maxim Shalunov took penalties 53 seconds apart at 0:56 and 1:49 of the first period, but they were unable to capitalize with a two-man advantage for 1:07.

The OHL squandered another power play opportunity at 6:07 of the period, one that was nullified by a penalty by 2013 NHL Draft prospect Max Domi of the London Knights 41 seconds later.

The three power-play opportunities early on led to the OHL jumping out to a 7-3 lead in shots on goal, and the first period ended with the OHL holding an 8-5 lead in shots.

The game marked the return of Russia's Nail Yakupov to Sarnia, where he played the last two years with the Sting of the OHL before the Edmonton Oilers made him the top pick in the 2012 Draft.

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