(Amherst, NY) – The Buffalo Jr. Sabres returned home Monday night after a weekend road swing and defeated the Toronto Lakeshore Patriots, 5-4, at the Northtown Center at Amherst.
Just 1:30 into the first period Tyler Gjurich scored his 11th goal of the season (assisted by Nolan Sheeran) to give the home team the 1-0 lead. The Patriots’ Daniel Tedesco evened the score a little more than six minutes into the period. Buffalo’s Max Mikowski (in file photo) put Buffalo back in the lead at the 12:57 mark with his unassisted goal, though Tedesco scored his second goal of the game late in the period to send the teams into the first intermission tied 2-2.
In the second period, the Jr. Sabres’ David Seward was sent off with a major penalty for making head contact with a Toronto Lakeshore player, and Buffalo found itself forced to kill a five-minute Toronto Lakeshore power play. Not only did they keep the Patriots from scoring, they took the lead when Nolan Sheeran scored a shorthanded goal at the 5:54 mark, assisted by Tyler Gjurich. Gjurich then set up Tim Kielich’s goal at the 17:53 mark. Ryan Schmelzer also assisted on Kielich’s tally.
In the third period, Mikowski scored his second goal of the game, on the power play, assisted by Pat Egan and Dylan Howatt, to build Buffalo’s lead to 5-2. The Patriots clawed back with two goals, including one late in the period with their net emptied for the extra attacker. The Jr. Sabres did enough to prevent a tie, and earned two more points int eh standings with the 5-4 win.
The Patriots kept Jr. Sabres goalie Parker Gahagen busy. Gahagen made 42 saves for his 11th win of the season.
The Jr. Sabres (11 wins, 1 shootout win, 6 losses and 1 shootout loss) travel to St. Michael’s on Friday to face the Buzzers, followed by a Saturday road game at the Toronto Jr. Canadiens and then a Sunday evening home game against the Georgetown Raiders, who currently are four points behind Buffalo in the OJHL West Division but hold four games in hand.
While Tyler Gjurich remains the team’s top goal scorer with 11 goals, Max Mikowski is the team’s hottest player with four goals in the past three games. In addition to Monday night’s two-goal performance he also scored twice in the Jr. Sabres’ 5-3 win at Mississauga on Saturday night. In both games, Mikowski scored the game winning goals.
The Jr. Sabres’ David Seward will face a league suspension for his head contact major in Monday night’s game. The team was awaiting the ruling from the OJHL as of Tuesday morning.
The team is looking forward to the return of forward Alex Dagnal, who has missed several games due to a leg injury. Although not confirmed the team believed he could be ready to skate again in about another week. Dagnal was the team’s leading scorer leading up to his injury on October 6 in Burlington.
Other encouraging news came when it was learned defenseman Darrin Trebes did not suffer a tear when he went down with a knee injury on October 13 at the OJHL Governor’s Showcase in Cobourg, Ontario. Trebes went down in the first period against the Orangeville Flyers following a knee-on-knee collision. Instead of months, the hope is that he’ll be back in perhaps a couple more weeks.