Muskie boys fall in opener

Staff

The rankings officially can be thrown in the garbage now.
A playoff spot just became much tougher for the Muskie boys’ hockey team after losing 5-3 this morning to the Frontenac Falcons (Kingston) in its first game at the OFSAA ‘A/AA’ championship in Ottawa.
Fort High (0-1) came in as the second-highest ranked team in Pool ‘D’ of the 20-team field at No. 5 overall, and seemed to have a favourable matchup to kick things off against the lowest-seeded team in the pool in No. 18 Frontenac (1-0).
But the Falcons shook off some early difficulties to score four times in the second period.
Max Williams opened the scoring in the first for the Muskies, who then fell behind 2-1 on a power-play goal and an even-strength marker by Frontenac.
Chase McGuire converted Colton Bodnar’s feed to tie the game later in the second.
But the Falcons chased Muskie starting goalie Dylan Ossachuk with two more goals before the frame was over, with Matt Booth coming on in relief.
McGuire netted his second just before the end of the middle frame to make it a one-goal game.
Fort High later thought it had tied the game but had a goal waved off because the whistle had blown before the puck crossed the goal line.
Frontenac iced the puck several times in the final minutes as part of its strategy to hang on—getting an empty-netter in the final minute to seal the victory.
The Muskies virtually are in must-win territory in their final three games, with only the top two finishers from each pool qualifying for the quarter-finals on Wednesday afternoon.
The squad resumes action tomorrow at 7 a.m. (all times Central) against the No. 10-ranked General Amherst Bulldogs (Amherstburg), then will face the third-seeded Saint Michael Mustangs (Niagara Falls) at 1 p.m.
They’ll wrap up pool play Wednesday at 9:15 a.m. against the 15th-ranked St. Joseph Jaguars (Nepean).