Di-Spiriting loss for 67's

DON BRENNAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:08 AM ET

The 67's lost their top scorer in overtime last night.

Twenty seconds later, they lost the game.

Winger Corey Cowick, who earlier scored his team-leading 26th of the season, was called for goalie interference and given a 10-minute misconduct for debating the fact in the first minute of OT against the Saginaw Spirit at the Civic Centre.

With Cowick fuming in the dressing room, T.J. Brodie blasted a slap shot by goalie Adam Courchaine at the 55-second mark to give the Spirit a 3-2 victory.

"Coutch (Logan Couture) had the puck wide and my eyes were on him," Cowick said. "Their D didn't help me get out of the way ... he angled me into (the goalie).

"I told (the ref) I couldn't get out of the way," he said, adding that his assistant captain's 'A' didn't get him the privilege of discussing a call with the official, as it should.

Added 67's coach and GM Brian Kilrea: "I thought (Cowick) was pushed by the defenceman, but when you get in contact with a goalie, you run the risk of a penalty. The refs are told they've got to protect the goalies."

Coincidentally enough, it was Brodie who Cowick was tangled up with when he crashed into Saginaw goalie Edward Pasquale during an odd-man rush.

The 67's let this one slip away when Saginaw's Joe Underwood tied the game on a sharp angle shot that squeezed between Courchaine's left shoulder and the post with just 2:38 left in the third.

But Kilrea wouldn't blame his players on the tying goal.

"You probably wouldn't score nine times out of 10 on that shot. This time it found a hole," said Kilrea, whose team has lost two straight after a 10-game unbeaten streak.

Couture had the other 67's goal, while rookie Tyler Toffoli responded to a promotion to the top line with a pair of assists. Toffoli now has 23 helpers, third most on the team, to go with 10 goals.

After some solid goaltending and hit posts at both ends, Cowick opened the scoring just past the midway mark of the second.

Ottawa didn't make the visitors wait long for a chance to get back in it as Julien Demers was sent off for hooking 30 seconds after the Cowick goal.

The 67's killed the penalty and with the momentum, had back to back 2-on-1s. With the first, Anthony Nigro was thwarted by a fine Pasquale right leg save. On the second, Toffoli took a pass from Couture, then sent the puck back to his centre, who made no mistake.

The goal was Couture's 15th of the campaign.

The Spirit bounced back 41 seconds later with a goal by Jordan Skellett. Earning the assists were former 67's winger Joe Pleckaitis and Adam Comrie, a Kanata native who had 36 friends and family in the building cheering him on.

The 67's visit Peterborough to face the Petes tonight (7 p.m.), then continue on to Mississauga for an afternoon game tomorrow.

Bert bash in March

67's assistant coach Bert O'Brien will be honoured at the March 6 home game. O'Brien, the longtime assistant to Kilrea, is also stepping down from the bench at the end of the season.


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