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3/9/2005: WESTERN ONTARIO - 4 @ LAKEHEAD - 5

WOLVES BEAT STANGS IN 5-4 THRILLER

Mike Aylward
Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The No. 8 Lakehead Thunderwolves scored a thrilling 5-4 win over the No. 5 Western Mustangs Wednesday night before a sold out crowd of 3783 at the Fort William Gardens in Thunder Bay.  The win gives the Thunderwolves a 1-0 lead in the best of three OUA West Finals.  Lakehead was led by Erik Lodge with two goals and an assist while Mike Rice led the Mustangs with two goals.  Lakehead's other goals came from Mike Wehrstedt, Joel Scherban, and Jeff Richards.  Western's other markers came from Craig Kennedy and Sal Peralta.   

The first three minutes saw incredible action as Lakehead's Jeff Richards and Steve Rawski both just missed with hard shots.  Western's Ryan Held then went back up the ice and snapped a shot off the right Lakehead post.  Lakehead's Brad Priestlay then blasted a shot off Western netminder's Mike D'Alessandro's mask and then whacked at the rebound that almost trickled in.  D'Alessandro came up with more good saves; robbing Lakehead's Peter Cava point blank in front of the Western net.  Western then put on some pressure and Lakehead's Chris Whitley stoned the Stangs' Chris Rowan.  The Wolves got on the board first when Lakehead Captain Joel Scherban picked up a Dene Poulin pass at the Western blue line.  Scherban broke in, faked a pass to Erik Lodge and beat D'Alessandro five-hole at 8:53.  Lakehead kept up the pressure and Cava dropped a Stang's d-man with a fake and bounced a backhander off the Western crossbar. 

The Wolves had a powerplay but couldn't get a good shot off.  The Mustangs then had a man advantage with 8 minutes left but also couldn't generate anything.  The Wolves Andrew Brown then made a great rush and was hauled down putting Lakehead on the powerplay.  D'Alessandro made two great stops off Scherban to keep the lead at one.  Lakehead's Cava was then crushed into the boards from behind by Western's Mike McKeown injuring Cava and putting him out of the game for the rest of the period.  No penalty was called.  Western went on the powerplay and an apparent goal by Mike Rice was disallowed as he had crosschecked Jeff Richards down from behind in front of the Lakehead net to become open to knock the puck in.  Lakehead outshot Western 16-7 in the first.

The second started with neither team getting a good opportunity until Lakehead's Jason Lange fired a quick shot at 2:45 that D'Alessandro had to be sharp on.  Good news for Lakehead was that Peter Cava returned from the dressing room to play on.  Then the play became fast and furious again.  Lakehead got sloppy in their end and Shawn Thompson fired a shot that was stopped by Whitley but Craig Kennedy fired it over the fallen Lakehead netminder at 3:42 to tie the game.  Western quickly made it 2-1 at 4:03 when Mike Rice was set up all alone in front of the Lakehead goal and beat Whitley.  The assists went to Chris Eade and Ryan Hare.  Lakehead quickly tied it at 4:32 when Mike Wehrstedt redirected a point shot by Mike Self past D'Alessandro.  The other assist went to Tobias Whelan. 

Lakehead's Jeff Richards then made a great rush and was hauled down by a Western d-man but the Stangs couldn't touch the puck as Lakehead had the extra attacker.  Lakehead's Peter Cava found Erik Lodge all alone in front of the Western net and Lodge banged it home at 5:59.  The other assist went to Hugo Lehoux.  Western Coach Clarke Singer was not happy as he thought one of his players had touched the puck, which would have stopped the play.  Western went on the powerplay but Lakehead struck shorthanded when Jeff Richards followed up on a nice rush by Erik Lodge and beat D'Alessandro with a high backhander at 7:19.  The other assist went to Joel Scherban.  Western came close at 11:00 when Shawn Thompson's tip in was stopped by a nice save by Whitley.  Lakehead went a man down at 11:25, but it was the Thunderwolves that controlled<

SCORING SUMMARY
PERIOD 1:
1. 08:53 Lakehead, Joel Scherban (Steve Rawski, Dene Poulin)
Penalties: 09:32 Western Ontario, Rowan (Slash)12:04 Lakehead, Steve Rawski (Interference)14:46 Western Ontario, Sellan (Charge)18:25 Lakehead, Steve Rawski (Rough)19:13 Western Ontario, Rice (Interference)
PERIOD 2:
2. 03:42 Western Ontario, Kennedy (Thompson ) 3. 04:03 Western Ontario, Rice (Eade , Hare ) 4. 04:32 Lakehead, Michael Wehrstedt (Tobias Whelan) 5. 05:59 Lakehead, Erik Lodge (Peter Cava, Murray Magill) 6. 07:19 Lakehead, Jeff Richards (Erik Lodge, Joel Scherban) SH 7. 15:40 Lakehead, Erik Lodge (Peter Cava, Murray Magill) PP
Penalties: 06:23 Lakehead, Murray Magill (Trip)11:25 Lakehead, Jeff Richards (Interference)14:35 Western Ontario, Piwowarczyk (Hold)20:00 Western Ontario, Sellan (Cross Check)
PERIOD 3:
8. 04:13 Western Ontario, Rice (unassisted) PP 9. 10:41 Western Ontario, Peralta (Bannan ) PP
Penalties: 05:00 Western Ontario, Paddon (Unsportsmanlike)07:35 Lakehead, Tobias Whelan (Hooking)10:28 Lakehead, Erik Lodge (Hooking)12:53 Lakehead, Jeff Richards (Hooking)
Lakehead: Chris Whitley, 36 saves made, 4 goals against.Western Ontario: DAlessandro, 31 saves made, 5 goals against.Referees: Lance Dysievick (referee), Doug Gale, Kevin Kuluski,