The Barrie Colts jumped out to a two-goal lead, but couldn’t hang on, as the host Windsor Spitfires rallied for 4-3 win in Ontario Hockey League action, Oct. 18, at the WFCU Centre. Luke Bignell, with a pair, and Ben Hawerchuk scored for the Colts (5-5-1), who held a 3-1 lead midway through the second period.
Daniel D’Amico cut the lead to one at 11:35 of the middle frame, before the Spitfires (5-5) capped off the rally in the third.
With Windsor on the power play, Beeton native and former Barrie Colts minor midget triple-A defenceman Connor Corcoran, tied it on a blast from the point just 3:08 into the third. Chris Playfair potted the game winner a little more than four minutes later when he wristed a cross-ice pass from former Colts forward Curtis Douglas over the shoulder of Barrie rookie goaltender Jet Greaves. Luke Kutkevicius also scored for the hosts, who got a 27-save performance in goal from Michael DiPietro. Greaves finished with 25 saves for Barrie.
Earlier in the week, a trio of Colts were rewarded for their strong play to start the season.
Rookie forward Riley Piercey was chosen to represent Canada at the World U-17 Hockey Challenge in Saint John, NB from Nov. 3-10. Barrie’s first overall pick (16 overall) in the 2018 OHL Priority Selection, the 16-year-old has a goal and an assist in 11 games this season.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” said the six-foot-three, 185-pound winger, who will head east for the tournament on Oct. 29. “It’s a childhood dream to throw the Canadian jersey on and represent our country.”
The Colts will also be well represented at the upcoming CIBC Canada Russia Series. Second-year forward Ryan Suzuki and defenceman Tyler Tucker will suit up for Team OHL in the series that sees the Russians take on the OHL, WHL and QMJHL twice each in a six-game mini-series.
Suzuki, who did not play in Windsor and remains day-to-day with an undisclosed injury, is one of the top-rated OHL prospects for the 2019 NHL Entry Draft in June. The 2017 first-overall pick, who is off to an impressive start with four goals and 14 assists in 10 games this season, will suit up for Team OHL on Nov. 2 at Oshawa.
Tucker, a seventh-round pick (200 overall) of the St. Louis Blues in the 2018 NHL draft, will man the blue line for Team OHL against the Russians on Nov. 8 at Sarnia. The 18-year-old leads all OHL blue liners in scoring this season with four goals and eight assists.
It was also a big week for Barrie teammate Matej Pekar, after the Buffalo Sabres announced, on Oct. 17, the signing of the import forward to a three-year NHL entry level contract. The 18-year-old native of Turnov, Czech Republic, was named the USHL’s Rookie of the Year after recording 14 goals and 40 assists in 56 games with the Muskegon Lumberjacks. He was Buffalo’s fourth-round pick (94 overall) in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft. The six-foot, 170-pound forward, who was Barrie’s second-round pick (108 overall) in the 2018 CHL Import Draft, is off to a strong with six goals and 12 points in 11 games with Barrie.
The Colts road swing continues Oct. 19 against the Spirit at Saginaw and wraps up Oct. 21 against the Flint Firebirds.
ICE CHIPS: Barrie native Luke Richardson, who is off to a great start in goal with the Kitchener Rangers, and Sault Ste. Marie centre and former Barrie Colts triple-A minor midget Morgan Frost will also suit up for Team OHL in the Russia/Canada series game in Sarnia. . . Barrie native and Mississauga Steelheads rookie forward James Hardie was also one of the 28 players named to Team Canada for the upcoming World U-17 Hockey Challenge.
Photo: Luke Bignell scored twice, but it wasn’t enough as the Barrie Colts blew a two-goal lead in a 4-3 loss to the host Windsor Spitfires on Oct. 18. Terry Wilson/OHL Images photo