Elliot Lake stays hot to start 2019 with decision over Blind River

ELLIOT LAKE, Ont. – A three-goal second period outburst, just over three minutes apart, broke open a tie game to help propel the Elliot Lake Wildcats to a 6-2 victory over the Blind River Beavers in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League play Saturday at Centennial Arena.

Caleb Minns got Elliot Lake going nearly six minutes into the contest as he collected his sixth tally of the campaign.

Blind River got that back though in the final minute of the frame when Riley Nadeau notched his 20th goal of the season to knot the affair at 1-1 after one.

Heading to the middle stanza, the Wildcats broke the deadlock at 8:18 as Connor Taylor put the home side back on top.

They then added another a couple of shifts later off the stick of Carson Andreoli, which saw the Beavers opt to replace starting netminder Garret Boyonoski in favour of affiliate goalkeeper Patrick Boivin, who stayed until the end of the period.

However, Boivin’s NOJHL debut was greeted with another Elliot Lake marker just 13 seconds later from Josh Bifolchi, who picked up his 14th overall.

The visitors did get one back before the session was complete as Nadeau added another at 18:36.

Minns added his second of the evening early in the third to put Elliot Lake back up by three before Eric Conley rounded out the scoring late for the Wildcats as he capped off a three-point night with Bifolchi.

Ian Elkins and Noah Minns both dished out two assists to aid the Wildcats offensively.

Dominic Boily in the Elliot Lake net made 34 stops to record the win to help his side remain unbeaten early in 2019.

Boyonoski suffered the loss for Blind River allowing five on 28 attempts with Boivin handling one of two in relief.