Mississauga downs Battalion
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Jacob Cascagnette scored two goals as the Mississauga Steelheads ended a four-game losing skid with a 7-1 victory Friday night over the North Bay Battalion, which suffered its eighth consecutive Ontario Hockey League loss.
Nicolas Hague and Trent Fox each had one goal and one assist and Shaw Boomhower, Cole Schwindt and Cameron Gaylor added a goal apiece for Mississauga, which has a won-lost-extended record of 2-8-0 for four points, fifth and last in the Central Division.
Goaltender Emanuel Vella made 23 saves before an announced Hershey Centre crowd of 1,989.
Patrick Brown scored for the Battalion, while goaltender Christian Purboo, making his first OHL appearance after joining the Troops from the Oakville Blades of the Ontario Junior Hockey League, faced 33 shots.
North Bay is 3-6-2 for eight points, tied with the Sudbury Wolves for third place in the division with a game in hand. The Battalion is 0-6-2 since defeating visiting Sudbury 6-5 in overtime Sept. 27.
Mississauga carried a 5-1 lead into the second intermission before Schwindt and Gaylor wrapped up the scoring in the third period. Schwindt took a lead pass from Albert Michnac and broke in alone to convert his own rebound at 8:32, and Gaylor put home a loose puck at 14:12 off Mason Hardy’s screened right-point blast.
Boomhower scored the first of two power-play goals in the first period, both coming with Kyle Potts in the penalty box. Seven seconds after Potts went off for hooking, Boomhower converted the rebound of an Adam Varga drive at 14:19 following a right-pad save by Purboo. Ryan McLeod also assisted.
Defenceman Hague drilled a right-point slap shot home through traffic at 19:10 after Purboo snagged a McLeod shot at the right edge of the crease off a bounce from the end boards earlier in the man advantage. Fox had the other assist.
The Steelheads threatened in the 12th minute when Simon Rose fell at the Battalion blue line, giving Nicholas Canade and Varga a path to the net, but Varga failed to handle Canade’s pass to the left wing and the chance went for naught.
Rookie Brown scored his first OHL goal shorthanded at 1:39 of the second period. Vella went behind the net but was stripped of the puck by Brown, who tucked it around the right post before the goaltender could scramble back into position. Potts almost staged the same theft and result before the penalty ended, but the puck went wide.
Fox scored at 3:50, slipping the puck into the net from the crease off a rebound, and Cascagnette put home a rebound from a power-play scrum at 10:35 as Potts again watched from the penalty box. Cascagnette struck shorthanded for his third goal of the season at 19:44 after Cam Dineen missed on an attempt at a pokecheck, sending Cascagnette and Michael Little away on a two-man breakaway.
The Battalion plays host to the Kingston Frontenacs at 2 p.m. Sunday.
BATTALION BULLETS: Purboo, who was signed Friday to a standard player’s agreement including an education package, was an 11th-round pick in the 2016 OHL Priority Selection from the Mississauga Rebels minor midgets. In four games with Oakville this season, he won three of four decisions, posting a goals-against average of 2.00 and a save percentage of .929. The six-foot-three, 188-pound Purboo, who turned 17 on July 1, was backed up by Mat Woroniuk … Brett McKenzie played a 269th game, tying Luke Lynes for fifth place on the Battalion’s career list … The Battalion’s Luke Moncada saw the end of a four-game points streak during which he had one goal and four assists for five points … North Bay went 0-for-7 on the power play. Mississauga was 3-for-5 … Opening lines featured McKenzie centring Luke Burghardt on left wing and right winger Andy Baker, Adam McMaster centring left winger Moncada and right winger Justin Brazeau and Potts pivoting left winger Brad Chenier and right winger Brandon Coe. Brown centred left winger Daniel Walker and Rhys Forhan on right wing … The Battalion was without Julian Sime, Travis Mailhot, Kurtis Evans, Brady Lyle and Alex Robert … Potts returned from a four-game suspension for a match penalty for slashing against the visiting Peterborough Petes on Oct. 9 … Michnac, with two helpers, has a seven-game assists streak during which he has nine assists.