Three games, three days, three wins.
That’s how the Buffalo Jr. Sabres got through this weekend, capturing all six possible points in consecutive wins over St. Michaels, Orangeville and Cobourg, closing out the three-in-three with a 6-1 victory over the Cougars Sunday night at HARBORCENTER in downtown Buffalo.
After a 6-1 win over the Buzzers on Friday and a 4-3 double-overtime victory over the Flyers Saturday, the Jr. Sabres returned home for their first of three home games in the upcoming week.
Despite having played twice in the past two days, the Jr. Sabres came out with a jump, taking an early lead just under six minutes in as Nicholas Bondra scored his second goal of the season to give Buffalo a 1-0 lead. The captain, Zach Evancho, registered the lone assist on the goal.
After some strong, physical play from both teams, the Cougars tied things up after miscommunication in front of the net left it half-empty. Kallen McFarland tapped it in to even the score, assisted by Rory Milne and Russell Nowry.
At the end of the first period, things appeared to be pretty even between the two teams, with the score and shots both tied.
But the Jr. Sabres weren’t happy with that; they came into the second period buzzing, and it paid off.
Buffalo scored twice in just 1:28 to take a quick 3-1 lead. Evan Bennett scored just over two minutes in to break the tie; Cobourg took a penalty shortly after, and David Baskerville potted one just six seconds in. Andrew Pizzo and Evancho registered assists.
Less than four minutes later, Michael Benaquist Jr. added one to make it a three-goal lead for the Jr. Sabres; assists were credited to Christian Zimmerman and Dylan Seitz.
Four goals on thirteen shots, including three goals on six shots in the second period, was enough to chase Cobourg netminder Stefano Durante from between the pipes. Tyler Lewis came in to relieve him.
The second period was a feistier one than the first, with fourteen penalty minutes handed out between the two teams in the middle frame, including a pair of penalties as a result of a scuffle at the 20-minute mark.
The third period started off calmer, at least on the scoreboard; this time, it would take seven and a half minutes for the Jr. Sabres to strike.
Brenden Dunning notched his eighth of the season to make it a four-goal lead in favor of Buffalo. Lunn notched his second assist of the night, while Bennett registered an assist for his second point of the evening.
Late in the third, with just over one minute to go in regulation, Christian Zimmerman notched his second goal of the season to put Buffalo up 6-1. Bryce Ferrell, who notched his first OJHL hat trick the previous night, registered an assist on the Jr. Sabres’ sixth goal of the night.
Despite playing three games in as many nights, the Jr. Sabres had a jump in their step, allowing them to overpower the Cougars for the win. Brian Kowalski stopped 19 of 20 shots faced in the win. For the Cougars, Durante stopped nine of 13 shots, and Lewis stopped six of eight in his relief.
The Jr. Sabres’ next game is Wednesday, October 4th as they host the North York Rangers at 7:35 pm at HARBORCENTER.