And Game 1 Goes To Kitchener.
Starting their OHL Final matchup against the Belleville Bulls Wednesday night, the Kitchener Rangers scored four straight and ended up winning 5-2.
Mikkel Boedker opened the scoring as Panthers prospect Mike Duco set up his linemate 5:25 into the game. For Duco, it was his 4th assist and 16th point of the playoffs. Belleville’s P.K. Subban knotted the score at one going into the first intermission when his shot found the back of the net at the 10:25 mark.
But Kitchener scored three times in the second period, making what was a close contest, a blow out. Nazem Kadri scored an un-assisted short handed goal 2:08 into the middle period and Matt Pepe followed up with the eventual game-winner just 53 seconds later. Nick Spaling scored his 10th of the post season at 14:51 as the Rangers had the man advantage.
With the 4-1 lead and only 20 minutes to play, the Rangers bogged down play. They only had five shots on net but it was good enough as Spaling’s second of the night 7:04 in gave the Rangers a 5-1 lead. Belleville’s Williams scored 33 seconds later, but that was it as Kitchener’s Josh Unice was strong in net, making 10 of his 34 saves in the last period.
Game 2 is in Belleville Friday night as the Bulls look to even the series with the Rangers. Panthers prospect Shawn Matthias
was close to returning from mono for Game 1 and could be ready to go for Game 2.More Information (Kitchener)More Information (Belleville)
For the first time in the playoffs, the Waterloo Black Hawks won’t have the home ice advantage.
It doesn’t matter to the Hawks as they are just three victories away from claiming the Clark Cup for themselves.
The schedule for the Clark Cup finals is set as the Hawks will take on the number one team in the league, the Omaha Lancers who had to come back from a 2-1 deficit in the series against Lincoln to reach the finals.
Game 1 is Sunday May 4th in Omaha while Game 2 is the next day. The series shifts to Waterloo for Game 3 on Wednesday May 7th. Game 4 (if necessary) will be Friday May 9th and Game 5 (if necessary) is Saturday May 10th in Omaha.More Information