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Abundant Action Ahead for Battalion

January 28, 2015
By

January 27, 2015 – Ontario Hockey League (OHL) North Bay Battalion

NORTH BAY, Ont. – Things are about to get really busy for the North Bay Battalion.

The Battalion hosts the Mississauga Steelheads at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the first of 16 Ontario Hockey League games in a span of 32 days. Nine of the dates are on the road, starting with a visit to the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds on Friday night.

The Mississauga game is the fifth of six season meetings between the Battalion, which has a won-lost-extended record of 22-12-9 for 53 points, second in the Central Division, and the fourth-place Steelheads, 19-24-3 for 41 points.

North Bay has three wins in the series, having prevailed 4-3 at home Oct. 19 and 3-0 at Mississauga on Oct. 31 before losing 3-1 at Memorial Gardens on Nov. 16. Goaltender Jake Smith earned his second shutout against the Steelheads this season in a 5-0 road victory Dec. 12.

Smith recorded his fourth shutout of the campaign and the eighth of his career Sunday in a 6-0 home-ice rout of the visiting Sudbury Wolves. Smith, 19, is tied with Patrick Killeen for second place on the franchise shutout list, one behind former partner Matej Machovsky.

The Troops may well see a new face behind the mask in the Mississauga crease in Jacob Brennan. The overage goaltender, having cleared waivers in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, was claimed by the Steelheads in the same process Jan. 7 when seeking entry to the OHL.

He has replaced workhorse Spencer Martin, who suffered a season-ending knee injury in the first period of a 5-4 win via shootout Dec. 21 over visiting Sudbury.

Brennan, a Halifax product, played 172 games over three-plus seasons with the QMJHL’s Acadie-Bathurst Titan, posting a goals-against average of 3.65, a save percentage of .888, seven shutouts and a record of 54-90-11.

In seven games with Mississauga, Brennan is 2-5-0 with a 3.74 GAA and a .909 save percentage. He provided 47 saves Sunday in a 2-1 decision over the visiting Kitchener Rangers as the Steelheads snapped a six-game losing streak.

“He’s played some tremendous games where he hasn’t had a lot of run support,” general manager and coach James Boyd, resorting to a baseball term, told The Mississauga News.

Martin started all four games against North Bay, going the distance each time except in the Dec. 12 meeting, in which he surrendered four goals before being relieved by Cameron Zanussi midway in the second period.

In 12 games, first-year backup Zanussi, 18, is 2-5-2 with a 4.10 GAA and an .878 save percentage.

Battalion coach Stan Butler acknowledged Tuesday that he knew little of Brennan.

“I know he was lights-out against Kitchener. I know that from watching video.”

Butler said that right winger Nick Moutrey, who suffered an ankle sprain in a 6-3 road loss Jan. 9 to the Plymouth Whalers, may make his home-ice debut after a Jan. 4 trade from the Saginaw Spirit.

“He’s going to skate today. We’ll see how he feels.”

In his only full game with the Troops, Moutrey had one goal and two assists in a 6-3 victory Jan. 6 over the Ottawa 67’s. He left the Plymouth game, his second in Battalion colours, in the third period.

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Ontario Hockey League Stories from January 27, 2015

  • Back and Forth Goals Leads to 5-4 OT Win for the Gens – Oshawa Generals
  • 67’s Fall in OT in Classic Match vs. Junior Hockey’s Top Team – Ottawa 67’s
  • Sting Visit the Home Depot February 7th – Sarnia Sting
  • Petes Participate in SafeTALK Program – Peterborough Petes
  • Spirit’s Evan Cormier Named Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week – OHL
  • Steelheads Preview – Mississauga Steelheads
  • Hope Returns to Owen Sound – Owen Sound Attack
  • Abundant Action Ahead for Battalion – North Bay Battalion
  • Oshawa Generals and Heart and Stroke Foundation Team up for Third Annual Pucks 4 Heart Game – Oshawa Generals
  • Pink in the Rink Auction Open – Niagara IceDogs
  • London Knights 2015 Playoffs – Round 1 Tickets on Sale Saturday – London Knights

The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

Article source: http://www.oursportscentral.com/services/releases/?id=4920446

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