Timmins Rock forward Jaden Lyons is hit in the left shoulder with a point shot in front of goalie Dryden Riley, while killing a penalty, as teammates Chase Longhurst-McIntyre, left, and Tenzin Nyman, as well as Iroquois Falls Storm forward Whittaker Heart look on during the second period of Friday night’s NOJHL contest at the McIntyre Arena. The Rock rallied to edge the Storm 3-2. THOMAS PERRY/THE DAILY PRESS
The Timmins Rock rallied to edge the Iroquois Falls Storm 3-2 at the McIntyre Arena Friday night.
It snapped the Rock’s modest two-game losing streak in the first half of a home-and-home series that will see the two sides rekindle their rivalry at the Jus Jordan Arena on Saturday, at 7 p.m.
Following a scoreless opening 20 minutes that saw both sides struggle to generate any sustained pressure, the Storm potted a pair of power-play markers in the middle frame to take a 2-0 lead.
Andre Cho got the Storm on the scoreboard at the 3:12 mark when he netted his fifth goal of the season.
Nine minutes later, Max Jugnauth added his fourth goal of the campaign.
It took the Rock just 30 seconds to get that one back, however, as Jack Anderson scored his fourth goal of the season, an unassisted marker.
And Brant Romaniuk tied things up when he scored his third goal of the season with just 32 seconds remaining in the frame.
“K-Mac (Kaeden McArthur) won the draw and I came around the circle, saw a guy coming at me, so I really didn’t look at the net, just decided to rip it and it went in over his shoulder,” Romaniuk said, describing his momentum-switching marker.
The Rock lost forward Nolan Ring during the first period of Friday night’s contest, so they juggled their lines most of the game.
Romaniuk, who got into five games with the Rock as an affiliate player last season, now has 14 points in 24 games in 2023-24.
“I am feeling better and better every game and the points are starting to come,” he said.
Being a rookie, the Timmins product knows there is more to being a solid contributor to the Rock than just putting pucks in the net and piling up points.
“Breakouts are very important and Perrs (Rock coach and general manager Brandon Perry) trusts us on those,” he said.
“He wants us to do as good in the D zone as we do in the O zone.”
Mason Svarich then put the Rock in front just over five minutes into the third period when he scored a power-play marker, drilling a wrist shot through a screen from the left point, for his 14th goal of the season.
The Storm pulled goalie Brodie Haylock in favour of an extra attacker in the game’s final minute, but they were unable to secure the equalizer.
Rock goalie Dryden Riley stopped 23 of the 25 shots he faced to earn his seventh win of the season.
Haylock, who turned aside 24 of the 27 shots the Rock directed his way, was tagged with the loss.
NOJHL NOTES — The Daily Press three stars of the game were Romaniuk, Jugnauth and Svarich … The Rock went 1-4 on the power play, while the Storm were 2-4 with the man advantage … Official attendance at the McIntyre Arena was 908 … Friday’s other action saw the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners edge the Lumberjacks 4-3 in Hearst, the Voodoos double up the Espanola Paper Kings 8-4 in Powassan, the French River Rapids squeak past the Vikings 4-3 in Elliot Lake and the Thunderbirds thump the Soo Eagles 7-2 in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. … The Rock will take on the Storm in the second half of the home-and-home series at the Jus Jordan Arena on Saturday, at 7 p.m.