Beaulieu gets Knights going

RYAN PYETTE -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:37 AM ET

Josh Beaulieu is sporting the remnants of a black eye, which isn't surprising the way he plays hockey.

The London forward has also been the Knights' most consistent player against the Plymouth Whalers in the OHL Western Conference final and remains one of the bigger reason why his team has forced a Game 5 tonight at the John Labatt Centre.

Beaulieu has scored two of his three playoff goals against Plymouth and added a key insurance marker in the third period of Tuesday's 5-2 win to keep the Knights' season alive. He and linemate Jordan Foreman's hard-nosed play kept grinding on the Whalers' nerves by crashing the crease of goalie Michal Neuvirth.

"All my goals are grinding and that's never going to change," the 20-year-old Comber native said. "Jordan (Foreman) and I have been here a long time and we're just trying to be leaders and show the young guys how you're supposed to play in these kind of games.

"That was a big win. We proved we could beat them and we just have to keep it going the same way and we'll have success."

Beaulieu has only played nine playoff games because he was serving a 10-game suspension for abuse of officials while trying to get at Kitchener's Jakub Kindl in early March. But he kept himself in peak condition during his month-long absence and has added a physical edge that the Philadelphia Flyers expect will serve him well as a pro player.

"We're not intimidated by them (the Whalers) and we can play the same style of game they do," the six-foot-one, 190-pounder said. "That's the kind of game I like to play. We're going to keep going to the net hard looking for rebounds. We finally scored a couple on him (Neuvirth) and we gave ourselves another chance to try again (tonight)."

While Beaulieu has seen some power play time with the longterm absence of Adam Perry from a fractured jaw, his game remains at its best when he's killing penalties or trying to shut down the opposition's top line.

He, Foreman and captain Robbie Drummond, a successful unit in Game 7 against the Soo, will try to create havoc against the Whalers tonight in an effort to send the series back to Plymouth on Saturday.

"They ran our goalie (Steve Mason) a couple of times and we made it clear that we didn't like it," Foreman said. "We made them be aware of us. They're trying to be aggressive and we have to match their intensity."

While Plymouth did a great job of taking care of its own business in the first three games, the Whalers didn't shy away from pushing and shoving after the whistle. They believe they can oust the Knights if they stick to their plan but Foreman and mates are making it difficult.


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