OTTAWA – In what is likely the highest scoring game in the Ontario Hockey League so far this season, the Flint Firebirds climbed out of a hole on five separate occasions to propel themselves to an 8-6 victory on the road against the Ottawa 67’s on Sunday.
The first deficit came at 8:33 of the first period as Sasha Chmelevski got Ottawa a 1-0 lead. Luke Kirwan would respond with his first of four goals on the night, burying one at the top of the crease to draw even. Then Chmelevski got his second of the night and Noel Hoefenmayer added another just 42 seconds later, giving Ottawa a 3-1 lead.
With less than a minute left in the opening frame, Kirwan poked one in from the side of the net to chip away at Ottawa’s lead. Early in the second, Flint tied the game once again as Cullen Mercer skated to the front of the net and pushed the puck through. That is when the two teams began to trade goals for quite a while.
Patrick White gave Ottawa a 4-3 lead less than a minute after Mercer’s tally before Ryan Moore fired home a juicy rebound in front of the net to get it deadlocked again. A little later, White scored his second of the night to give the 67’s yet another lead, which was answered by Nicholas Caamano on a backhand to the top shelf.
Artur Tyanulin snagged the 67’s last advantage of the game early in the third period before Flint ripped off three unanswered to secure the win. Kirwan started the streak by getting the hat trick, scoring on a one-timer from Kole Sherwood. Mathieu Henderson got in on the fun, scoring on a slap shot from the blue line before Kirwan added his fourth, an empty-net goal.
On Friday, the Firebirds weren’t able to get much going, falling 3-0 on the road to the Kingston Frontenacs. Kingston’s goals came from Linus Nyman, Liam Murray and Stephen Desrocher.
The Firebirds fought to get back into the game but couldn’t quite get it done on the road in a 4-2 loss at the Peterborough Petes in Ontario Hockey League action on Thursday.
The Petes were responsible for the only goal of the first period, buried by Cole Fraser. It took Flint a while to respond, but they finally did at the 12:11 mark of the second stanza. After a scramble in front of the net, Dane Johnstone sent it back to the blue line and Henderson fired a slap shot into the top shelf to even things up.
Peterborough, however, wasted no time getting back on top. Less than two minutes later, Nick Isaacson put the Petes back ahead. In the final minutes of the period, Peterborough doubled their league with a goal from Logan DeNoble, taking a 3-1 lead into the third.
Then, the Firebirds began to push once again, and just like early on, Henderson was back to work. Jake Durham got the puck along the boards and passed it across ice to Henderson, who sent home another slap shot, this one from the faceoff circle, making it a one-goal game again.
Late in the third, though, the Petes got on the power play and put the game out of reach when Adam Timleck scored with just 40 seconds remaining in the contest.
Flint now sits at 8-7-0-1 for 17 points, putting the Firebirds in fourth place in the West Division and seventh in the Western Conference. Flint will travel to Kitchener on Friday before returning home on Saturday to take on Sault Ste. Marie.