(WINDSOR, ON) – South Windsor Arena was the scene of the next step toward defending the Queen’s Cup as the Windsor Lancers eliminated the Lakehead Timberwolves and moved on the the OUA West finals. Windsor skated away with a 6-3 win to take the best-of-three semi-finals 2-0.
Lakehead gave every indication that they weren’t going to go away peacefully. The visitors opened the scoring with a goal by Jake Carrick at 13:07 of the 1st period. And for a few minutes the T-wolves swarmed the Windsor nets as the Lancers were uncharacteristically disorganized in their own end. Lancer goaltender Parker VanBuskirk barred the door to keep the deficit from growing larger.
VanBuskirk’s play encouraged Ryan Green, who grabbed the puck from Spencer Pommells in the Lakehead zone and dipsey-doodled his way around the defenders before firing a rocket to the glove-side of Justin McDonald to tie the score.
Less than a minute later, Dylan Denomme and Drew Palmer charged the Thunderwolves’ net and Eric Noel pounced on the puck in the scramble behind McDonald and buried it.
Early in the 2nd period, the Lancers dominated play, keeping the puck in the Lakehead end, but unable to beat McDonald. The T-wolves managed to dump the puck into Windsor’s zone and Denomme dug the disk out of a scrum, but was then hit from behind by Trevor Hynnes.
On the ensuing power-play, Denomme exacted his revenge when he and Pommells set up Palmer, at the seven minute mark, with Windsor’s 3rd strike of the night. However, the persistent visitors ventured deep into the Lancer end and Hynnes wristed a shot into the net while the referees missed the interference being inflicted on VanBuskirk.
The the 3rd period, Noel restored the 2-goal lead when he chased down the puck while draped with a Lakehead defender. Noel managed to get a shot off which eluded McDonald to the glove-side.
Jay Gilbert was able to pull Lakehead back to within a goal, less than a minute later, with a shot that squeaked through VanBuskirk’s 5-hole.
With the period, and Lakehead’s season, winding down, they pulled out all the stops, including yanking McDonald in favour of an extra attacker. The move backfired when Pommells notched an empty netter and boosted Windsor to a 5-3 lead at 18:42.
McDonald was pulled again in a last ditch effort, with the same result. This time Mike Christou carried the puck deep into the Lakehead end and dumped it off to Sebastian Beauregard who had the whole net as a target.
The Lancers now await the survivor of the Guelph-Toronto series heading into the deciding game tonight at Varsity Arena . In the East, UQTR disposed of Carleton and will now face McGill, who had defeated Queen’s 2 games to none.