67's realize they need to score

ERIC BENDER -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 8:25 AM ET

Brian Kilrea has to find a way to beat the London Knights tonight to create a battle for entry to Sunday's Memorial Cup final.

The formula?

"We have to stay out of the penalty box and we have to cut down on the giveaways that we have been having because they just have too many goal scorers," said Kilrea. "And they'll capitalize on mistakes."

London's crisp transition game -- the switch from defensive to offensive mode -- has been a problem for teams this season. "The transition game (London's) has been working for over 80 games this year. We're not going to figure it out over night," Kilrea said. "We hope to pressure the puck."

Ottawa is the team in the Memorial Cup that knows London best. The teams have played seven games against each other -- two in the regular season and five in the OHL final. The 67's took just one of those matchups and it happened to be a 6-3 victory in Game 2 of the final and at the John Labatt Centre.

"I hope we've learned something from those six defeats."

Ottawa's scorers need to score. It's a point made also by 67's defenceman Brad Staubitz, who jumped up with a goal and an assist Tuesday night to keep Ottawa close to the Rimouski Oceanic in a 4-3 loss.

"Our scoring is spread around on three different lines," Kilrea said. "We have seven 20-goal scorers, I think."

He cited Brad Bonello as the "catalyst" on the forward corps in the last two games. "He's been playing better but we need more than Brad Bonello scoring. We don't have a 20-goal scorer on the blue-line."

Bonello had 26 goals in the regular season. Ottawa's top sniper was Mark Mancari with 36, Julian Talbot had 25, Jakub Petruzalek 23, Bryan Bickell 22, Lukas Kaspar 21 and Chris Hulit came close with 19.

"I'm just hoping someone breaks loose," Kilrea said.

At the same time he's crossing his fingers that goalie Danny Battochio continues to "play above his head."

"He's definitely the heart of our team," he said.

Besides Battochio, the real defence against the London power play, is to stay out of the penalty box, Kilrea said.

The Knights used different power play setups in their first two games of the Cup round- robin. "London changes its power play by feel. Who knows what they'll work. . . . Every team has something, but they pass the puck around so well that you can set up for one thing and they'll do another."


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