Sault Ste. Marie, ON – The Mississauga Steelheads travelled to Sault Ste. Marie on Friday evening to take on the Greyhounds in the second game of their road trip.
William Portokalis opened the scoring for the Steelheads midway through the first, as he took advantage of a Greyhounds turnover at the blue line and wired a shot that snuck through the arms of goaltender Bailey Byrkin. With the Steelheads just coming out of the penalty box, Rory Kerins one-timed a pass in the slot from Zack Trott to tie the game at one. Mississauga had a great opportunity on the PK, as Nic Canade found Duncan Penman on a 3-on-1, but he was stopped by Byrkin. Just seconds later, Calvin Martin sent Richard Whittaker all alone on a breakaway, who made no mistake this time beating Byrkin up high for the shorthanded marker. With a secondary assist on the play, Captain Liam Ham registered his 100th career OHL point. The Steelheads headed to the locker room with a 2-1 lead, while Kai Edmonds stopped 9/10 shots on goal (.900 SV%) in the period.
The Steelheads and Greyhounds traded opportunities on the powerplay early in the second, with neither team being able to capitalize. Mississauga had a few great scoring chances, as Michael Stubbs rang the post on an odd-man rush coming out of the penalty box. The Greyhounds turned the puck over on the ensuing breakout, leading to William Portokalis getting tripped up on a breakaway as the referee pointed to centre ice. Portokalis would be denied on the penalty shot, as he tried to go high glove but Byrkin just got a piece of it. The Steelheads took a 2-1 lead into the intermission, as neither team was able to find the scoreboard in the second.
During the intermission, Calvin Martin spoke about the upcoming third period “It’s nice to have the lead. We just have to stick with our game, we are short a couple of bodies, so we’ll just play smart, and it should be a good period.”
The Greyhounds tied the game five minutes into the third period, as a tic-tac-toe passing play on the powerplay led to a goal for Cole MacKay. Soo took the lead on the ensuing rush, as Alex Johnston broke in and took a shot that just snuck through the equipment of Edmonds. Byrkin made an incredible sprawling save to deny Whittaker of an open net to preserve the Greyhounds lead, as the Steelheads pushed for the tying goal. Mississauga pulled their goal for the extra attacker, but were unable to score, as the Greyhounds added an empty netter to win the game by a final score of 4-2.
Mississauga will travel to Sudbury on Sunday to finish up their three-game weekend. The Steelheads will return to the Paramount Fine Foods Centre on Friday, January 24th to take on the Peterborough Petes. All Friday Home Games during the 2019-20 season feature $3 off domestic tall cans. Tickets to the game can be purchased by visiting the Box Office, online through ticketmaster.ca or by calling 905-502-9100.