It took almost six full periods of play, but the Ottawa 67’s and Mitchell Hoelscher have advanced to the next round of the Ontario Hockey League playoffs. They defeated the Sudbury Wolves 3-2 in three overtimes to sweep the second round series.
Hoelscher got Ottawa on the board first when he scored 4:19 into the second period. Sudbury would respond with two of their own in the second period. Adam Ruzicka scored at 13:33 and Nolan Hutcheson potted one at 16:41 to give the Wolves the lead heading into the final period of regulation. Ruzicka’s game-tying goal came on the power play.
Sudbury seemed headed towards a sure-fire win and forcing a game five until the 6:40 mark of the third when Kyle Maksimovich scored for Ottawa to knot the game up at two.
And then began the marathon. One OT down, no winner. Two OTs down, no winner. Then, at 9:18 of the third OT, Owen Gilhula of the Wolves was called for a rare playoff overtime penalty. He was sent off for slashing and the 67’s were on the power play. It took about a minute, but Tye Felhaber took the air out of the Sudbury Community Arena when he scored the series-clincher from Austen Keating and Sasha Chmelevski at 10:15 of the third OT period.
The goalies were the real stars in this one. Michael DiPietro of Ottawa stopped 58 of 60 Sudbury shots in 110:15 minutes of play. For the Wolves, Ukka-Pekka Luukkonen was equal to 60 of the 63 he faced also in 110:15.
Hoelscher’s stat line saw him tally the goal for a point, end up a plus-1 rating, have three shots on goal and go 12-for-25 in the faceoff circle.
Ottawa will now advance to round three of the OHL playoffs.
Tomorrow is game four of the Everett Silvertips versus Spokane Chiefs series at 10:05 PM ET. We will have some coverage of that right here for you then.