Oshawa Generals win OT thriller Sunday to gain weekend home split – Toronto Star

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By Tim KellyDurhamRegion.com

Tue., Nov. 23, 20212 min. read

Article was updated 22 mins ago

Oshawa Generals Ty Tullio's stick starts to shatter as he tries to shoot Sunday night in a game against the Kingston Frontenacs as No. 1 2022 NHL prospect Shane Wright moves in to check him. Tullio didn't misfire later in overtime as he scored to win the g

The Oshawa Generals got early goals from the rookies but the veterans came through in the end for a tough 4-3 overtime win over Kingston Sunday night.

That salvaged an Ontario Hockey League home weekend that saw the team beaten 4-2 Friday against a dominant North Bay Battalion team that featured five Durham-born players.

The Generals looked to youngsters like Kevin Neidenz with two assists and Cooper Way, also with two helpers, as Matthew Buckley with his sixth and Belarus-born Nikita Parfenyuk, with his first goal, scored early to bring the team into the game Sunday.

Oshawa general manager Roger Hunt agreed those young players were key to Sunday’s win.

“They were all working, Kevin’s work ethic is infectious. Matt Buckley is a finisher, he’s a goal-scorer. Coop’s a great big guy who can win board battles,” Hunt said.

In the end though, with the team down 3-2 in the third, it was a big goal by forward Brett Harrison, with his ninth on the season, and captain Ty Tullio, with his sixth in overtime on the powerplay, that won the game.

Hunt gave tribute to Tullio, who now has 26 points, good for top 10 in scoring in the OHL. He has a point in nearly every game and is a leader among assists with 20 already.

“He’s coming through for us, last night was evidence of that. You need your best guys to be your best guys,” Hunt said.

Patrick Leaver continued to provide good goaltending, as he has game-in, game-out. He’s been in the top 5 in most of the OHL goaltending stats including save percentage, wins, and goals-against-average in his first season in the Ontario league.

It was a different story Friday night, when the high-flying North Bay Battalion, with a sizeable cheering section in town came to the Tribute Communities Centre.

Led by leading scorer and OHL players of the week Brandon Coe, from Ajax, the Battalion also feature top defender Tnias Mathurin and captain Liam Arnsby both from Ajax as well and Josh Currie and Anthony Romani from Pickering. Throw in Dalyn Wakely from Port Hope and there was a lot of local support in the stands for the Battalion. Toronto’s Ty Nelson, the first pick of the 2020 OHL draft and a top prospect for the 2022 draft, also had his own cheering section.

It served the team well as the club outshot the Generals 38-26 on the way to a 4-2 victory.

Mathurin was first star with a goal and an assist and showed why he’s considered a top NHL prospect for the 2022 draft. Coe had two  assists and now has 33 points.

Ryan Gagnier, with his seventh, and top rookie Cal Ritchie, with his ninth goal, scored for Oshawa in the game.

“They’re in first place for a reason, they’re the second-highest scoring team in the league for a reason and they’re a good litmus test,” Hunt said of the Battalion.

As far as Oshawa’s goaltending goes, overager Zach Paputsakis, who has been out of the lineup for about a month with a lower body injury, has been skating for the past week and just got into pads. He’s expected to practice this week and, Hunt said, “he’s getting close to being game ready.”

“He’s inching ever closer, I suspect beginning of December, he should be ready to go.”