NORTH BAY, Ont. — Mathieu Foget scored his second goal of the game 25 seconds into overtime to give the Ottawa 67’s a 4-3 victory Thursday night over the North Bay Battalion in the Troops’ annual Pink in the Rink game in support of the Canadian Cancer Society.
Kody Clark and Graeme Clarke also scored for Ottawa, which improved its won-lost-extended record to 5-3-1 for 11 points, tied atop the Ontario Hockey League’s East Division with the Peterborough Petes, who hold a game in hand.
Goaltender Olivier Tremblay made 27 saves for the 67’s, who collected a third consecutive win.
Daniel Walker, Brandon Coe and Justin Brazeau scored for North Bay, 3-2-2 for eight points, third in the Central Division, after a fourth straight loss. Goaltender Julian Sime faced 22 shots before a Memorial Gardens crowd of 2,280 who saw the Troops skate in pink sweaters and pink-trimmed socks.
“Hockey’s a funny game,” noted Battalion coach Stan Butler. “You have streaks where everything works for you, and early in the year we were getting goals where they were bouncing our way, and maybe right now the puck’s not bouncing our way. We’ve just got to continue to work hard and not get frustrated.”
In overtime, Foget found himself directly in front of Sime after a turnover in the right-wing corner and, after a lethal look, fired the puck home. It was Foget’s fourth goal of the season, with Tye Felhaber being credited with the lone assist, his second of the game.
Brazeau precipitated overtime with a power-play tally at 14:07 of the third period. Cam Dineen circumnavigated three-quarters of the Ottawa zone, arriving at the left side of the crease to feed Brazeau in front for a quick conversion. Brett McKenzie also assisted.
Clarke gave Ottawa a 3-2 lead at 9:59, rifling the puck from the mid slot atop the circles.
Foget opened the scoring on the power play at 6:24 of the first period with Luke Moncada off for slashing. Felhaber relayed the puck from the slot to an open Foget in the left circle for a one-timer that gave Sime little chance.
Walker tied it with his second goal 12 seconds later off a faceoff to Tremblay’s left. Patrick Brown took the draw and got the puck back several feet to Walker, who wired it into the twine on a high shot.
Brad Chenier rocked Clark with a check in the second minute, with Clark labouring off the ice.
The Troops had several chances on which they failed to capitalize. Adam McMaster was set up in the slot in the ninth minute but shot high, and Coe put the puck to Moncada loose on the left wing in the 15th, but he fired wide. Luke Burghardt stickhandled up the slot in the 17th minute, but Tremblay made the save on his back.
Clark connected at 12:58 of the second period, two seconds after a slashing penalty to Burghardt expired, taking a pass from the left wing and moving toward the net to beat Sime high to the glove side.
Rookie Coe responded with his first OHL goal at 16:59. Coe, driving down the right wing, took a pass from Moncada, slipped past Kevin Bahl and drilled the puck between Tremblay’s legs.
Travis Barron, who blocked a Dineen power-play blast after Seva Losev went off for holding at 3:10 of the period, lay on the ice for some time before being helped off by two teammates.
Tremblay was the focus of the crowd’s ire during an Ottawa power play midway in the frame when he collapsed behind his net after contact and lay prone on the ice. He stayed in the game and, suspected by many of diving, drew mock cheers when he next handled the puck. The boos were loud early in the third period after he virtually begged for a penalty following McKenzie’s tumble over him on a North Bay power play.
The Battalion visits the Barrie Colts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. The game can be seen live on YourTV Channels 12 and 700 and heard on Country 600 CKAT.
BATTALION BULLETS: The sweaters the Battalion wore were sold in a silent auction, raising $9,770 toward breast cancer awareness. Other fundraisers included pink T-shirts, a chuck-a-puck contest and gourmet cupcake sales … Coe was the Battalion’s first-round pick, third overall, in the OHL Priority Selection last April from the Toronto Nationals minor midgets. He has two points in seven games, having earned an assist in the season opener Sept. 22 against the visiting Colts … Burghardt was held without a point for the first time this season, ending a six-game streak … North Bay went 1-for-7 on the power play. Ottawa was 1-for-4 … Opening line combinations featured McMaster centring left winger Daniil Vertiy and right winger Brazeau, Burghardt pivoting left winger Chenier and right winger Andy Baker and McKenzie centring left winger Moncada and right winger Coe. Brown centred left winger Walker and Rhys Forhan on right wing … Simon Rose made his OHL debut, skating alongside Brady Lyle on the Battalion blue line … The Battalion scratched Eric Allair, Travis Mailhot, Kurtis Evans, Kyle Potts and Alex Robert … Potts started serving a four-game suspension for a match penalty for slashing Peterborough’s Austin Osmanski in a 7-3 home-ice loss Monday … Left winger Jacob Ball, whom the Battalion released Tuesday, has cleared OHL waivers and was awaiting reassignment.