Rapid outburst sends Crunch past Gold Miners

KIRKLAND LAKE, Ont. – A trio of tallies in rapid succession during a second period outburst played a big part in the Cochrane Crunch skating to a 6-1 victory over the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League encounter Sunday at Joe Mavrinac Community Complex.

Despite a late arrival in Kirkland Lake following some pre-game transportation issues, Cochrane showed no bus legs early as they skated out to 2-0 lead in the opening frame.

Matthew Minichiello got the first one for the Crunch 13 and a half minutes into the contest as he collected his 18th marker of the campaign.

The guests then added another a couple of shifts later on Nick Belisle’s fourth at 15:12.

The Gold Miners did cut into the deficit with a late power play as Robert McLaughlin connected at 17:07 as he notched his seventh for his club.

Action in the second stanza saw Cochrane open things up as they tallied three times in under a three-minute span to take control.

Crunch captain Hunter Buzzi started the outburst at 11:58 while J.P. Moreira and Owen Perala added markers right after that to make it 5-1 after two periods of play.

In the third, Buzzi bagged one more during a man advantage to round out the scoring.

Tyson Moore chipped in with a pair of assists to aid Cochrane’s offensive cause.

Earning the triumph was Zach Wickson.

Kyle McNair started for Kirkland Lake and suffered the defeat while back-up Kohl Reddy saw just over 20 minutes of action in relief.