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Friday, Sep. 21, 2018
GNML final knotted at a game apiece
by Randy Pascal

Home ice advantage remained intact as the North Bay Trappers and Sudbury Nickel Capital Wolves battled it out through games one and two of their best of five Great North Midget League championship final series.

The tete a tete kicked off last Friday in Temiscaming (Québec), as the Trappers spotted the visitors a 2-0 first period lead before roaring back for a 5-2 triumph. Goals by Mathieu Dokis-Dupuis and Alexander Fowke had the Nickel Caps feeling pretty good after twenty minutes of play, only to see coach Guy Blanchard's squad turn the tables in the final two periods.

Zach Lefebvre and Matt Hardwick evened things up in the middle stanza, and Sam Garagan, with a pair, and Ian Denomme allowed North Bay to run away and hide in the third.

If the series sits even today, it's in large part due to the work of Sudbury Wolves' prospect Alex Vendette between the pipes for the locals. A 39-save performance was instrumental on Sunday afternoon at the Gerry McCrory Countryside Sports Complex, as the Nickel Capital Wolves edged the Trappers 2-1.

Brett Shawana snapped a 1-1 tie with a power-play goal in the second period, with all three markers netted with teams enjoying the man advantage. Ryan Mills (North Bay) and Brett McGlade (Sudbury) traded goals in the opening frame.

The rivalry shifts back to "La Belle Province" this coming Friday, with game four back in Sudbury on Sunday, a 3:00 p.m. puck drop in line for the Countryside Complex, yet again.

If game five is required, the encounter will take place on Wednesday, March 21st, at 8:00 p.m. at the Temiscaming Arena, as the Trappers are forced out of the North Bay Memorial Gardens due to the 2018 Ford World Women's Curling Championships.

Although the champion of the GNML will move on to compete in Rockland from April 1st to the 8th, coach Peter Michelutti Jr and the Sudbury Nickel Capital Wolves are already guaranteed to be playing hockey at the end of the month. hosting the 2018 Telus Cup from Arpil 23rd to the 29th.

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