The Ottawa 67’s have not played a game in front of their home crowd since November 7th, in what was a 6-4 win over the Kingston Frontenacs. Over a full week, a few thousand kilometers of travel and five road games later, the Barber Poles are still rolling and are now ready to compete on TD Place ice once again. Still stretching their impressive 19-game undefeated in regulation time streak, the 67’s have a comfortable lead in the OHL standings, with a 16-0-3 record during this ongoing streak. After being defeated in overtime on Thursday against Sudbury, Ottawa has bounced back in a big way in their past two games, combining for 15 goals in those games that took place in the Soo and in North Bay.
After two key forwards in Marco Rossi and Graeme Clarke went down due to injury, opportunity was given to other players such as Jack Quinn and Sam Bitten. Bitten has taken the bull by the horn and has put up 11 points in his last eight games, including four on Sunday against the Battalion (2G, 2A).
Tye Felhaber leads the team in points with 40, which is good enough for 3rd in the OHL. He leads the league in goals scored with 24, while his linemate Austen Keating leads the league in assists with 26. Cedrick Andree is a league leader for all OHL goalies in wins with 17.
After playing against rivals Oshawa on November 9th for the first time this year, in a game where the 67’s lost 4-3 in overtime, Ottawa will look to answer back with a win of their own against the Generals in front of their home fans.
Oshawa Generals (13-7-2-0)
Currently on a three-game winning streak, the Generals are sitting at second in the East Division, just behind the 67’s. They may seem close for now, but if we look at the points that separate these two teams (13), this game will not be a determining one for first place in the division, for now at least. If you look at the last time these two teams met, Ottawa had a 3-1 lead at one point, before losing 4-3 in overtime, which means the Generals are not to be taken lightly. Serron Noel, Florida Panthers 2nd round pick, gave his team the win 2:48 into the overtime period. Marco Rossi was a major factor in that game for the 67’s, scoring two goals. It will be interesting to see how the 67’s respond to the loss of Rossi, who will likely be sidelined with an elbow injury for this game. For Oshawa, Jack Studnicka and Noel will be the ones to watch, along with Nando Eggenberger. Studnicka has put up a total of 28 points in 21 games this year, while Noel and Eggenberger respectively have 27 and 22 points in 22 games each. In net, the 67’s got a look at both Oshawa netminders the last time they played. A Kyle Keyser injury sidelined him for the third period and the overtime, giving Ottawa native and brother of ex-67’s defenseman Cody Ceci some playing time. Since then, Keyser has come back from injury, he who has a record of 10-3-1-0 this year with an impressive save percentage of .925%, but it will be interesting to see if Oshawa decides to give hometown kid Ceci the net for this game.
- With an impressive 102 goals scored in 25 games this year, the 67’s average just over 4 goals a game. Their goal differential is of +32, which is best in the OHL.
- Last game, Tye Felhaber opened the scoring for the 67’s for the 10th time this year. He leads the league in game-opening goals.
- During this 19-game point streak for Ottawa, the Barber Poles have picked up 35 points out of a possible 38.
- With 11 points in his last 8 games, Sam Bitten has picked up the pace, he who had only one point in his first 17 games this year.
- With Marco Rossi out, the OHL’s second leading rookie scorer Jack Quinn is now stealing the spotlight from his fellow rookie teammate. The Ottawa Valley lad has picked up five points in his last two games.