67's deke out victory

BARRE CAMPBELL -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 11:29 AM ET

67's 5, Colts 4

BARRIE -- Ottawa leads series 1-0 With March Madness going on south of the border, it was appropriate that the 67's used their fast break to score a victory in Game 1 of their OHL playoffs series last night vs. the Colts.

Julian Talbot, twice, and Mark Mancari scored after getting in clear behind the Colts defence in a 5-4 win at the Barrie Molson Centre.

The win gives Ottawa a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference quarter-final, with Game 2 tomorrow night in Barrie.

"It matters a lot," 67's coach Brian Kilrea said about winning the first game on enemy ice.

"Anybody who says it doesn't matter until you get four is wrong. We know we can win in this rink, and that's the important thing."

BAD NIGHT FOR THUOT

Colts goalie Francois Thuot had a tough night.

The rookie OHLer told a Barrie newspaper that he was on top of his game and would lead the Colts to the Memorial Cup.

Not with last night's performance.

He got the hook early in the third, after allowing five goals on just 20 shots.

The coup de grace came after Bryan Bickell scored the winner on a shot that shouldn't have gone in.

Bickell skated toward the net from the left side and flipped the puck toward Thuot, hoping for a shot on net, at best.

But the puck slipped between Thuot's body and his right arm and landed in the net.

The goal also killed any momentum the Colts had gained when Dan Speer scored to tie the game one minute earlier at 4-4 -- the fourth time Barrie had rebounded from a one-goal deficit.

The Bickell goal wasn't the only weak one given up by Thuot, who played for Val-d'Or in the QMJHL last season.

Bryan Bonello scored on a slap shot from about 50 feet out in the first period when the puck squeezed through the goalie's pads and trickled across the line.

The others weren't his fault.

Talbot opened the scoring two minutes in on a power play, taking a great pass from Bickell at the blue line and cashing in with a deke and a backhand.

He scored again in the second period on another break, less than a minute after Barrie's Travis Fuller scored his second of the game on Ottawa's Danny Battochio.

"We've got a couple of quick guys on our team, and they just took advantage of their (defence) and got in behind," said Talbot.

Bryan Little tied it again during a power play, but Mancari gave Ottawa a 4-3 lead, taking a great pass behind the defence from Nick Van Herpt before deking Thuot for the goal.

Play was rough last night, with members of both teams taking shots at each other along the boards and in scrums in front of the net after the whistle.

CHIPPY AFFAIR

They got nasty in the middle period when Speer sent Jakub Petruzalek into the boards at the 67's bench head-first on a borderline hit from behind.

Petruzalek came back with a slash, breaking his stick across Speer's torso.

Then, Ottawa defenceman Brad Staubitz went to Petruzalek's aid and ended up fighting Barrie blueliner Todd Perry.

Kilrea argued with referee Ian Smith that Speer should have been penalized.

"Whether it was boarding, or whether is was cross-checking, or whether it was hitting from behind, I said it was one of those three," said Kilrea.

Staubitz said it was a chippy game and expects it to be the same tomorrow.

"It's definitely going to be a rough series and a chippy series," said Staubitz, who duked it out with B.J. Crombeen at the final buzzer.

"Hopefully, we can put some better play together and come out on top again."

barre.campbell@ott.sunpub.com


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