The Timmins Rock rolled over the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners at the McIntyre Arena Saturday night to strengthen their hold on top spot in the NOJHL’s overall standings.
A four-goal second-period outburst broke open a close game and paved the way for the Rock to thump the visitors 10-1 to the delight of the 943 fans who braved Saturday evening’s winter storm.
The two points allowed the Rock (31-6-1-1) to open up a four-point lead on the idle Voodoos (30-7-0-0) — second to Timmins in the East Division and overall standings — although Powassan does have a pair of games in hand.
Goals by Zach Smith, his fifth of the season, and Phil Caron, his first of two on the night and 12th of the season, allowed the Rock to build a 2-0 first-period advantage.
Patrick Murphy’s first goal of the season, with just 25 seconds remaining in the frame, allowed the Gold Miners to pull within a single marker before the end of the frame, however, even though his squad was outshot 20-6 in the opening 20 minutes of play.
Any momentum that tally might have given the visitors quickly dissipated once play resumed in the second period, though.
Goals by blue-liner Evan Beaudry, his third of the season, and Stewart Parnell, his 16th of the campaign, less than two minutes apart early in the middle frame allowed the Rock to push their lead to 4-1.
Tyler Gilberds added his 14th goal of the season just over a minute later to push the home side’s advantage to four goals.
And Josh Dickson added his 19th goal of the season late in the period to send the Rock to the dressing room for the second intermission enjoying a 6-1 lead.
The Rock kept pushing the pace in the third period and Riley Brousseau chipped in with his seventh goal of the season and Caron added his second goal of the night and 13th of the campaign less than a minute later to extend the lead to 8-1 before the frame was five minutes old.
Blue-liner Brendan Boyce then struck for a power-play marker, his fourth goal of the season, just past the midway mark in the period.
Brousseau’s second goal of the game and eighth of the season with less than three minutes to play closed out the scoring and made the final 10-1 in favour of the Rock.
Rock goalie Tyler Masternak turned aside 14 of the 15 shots directed his way to earn his 19th win over the season.
Gold Miners goalie Kohl Reddy, who blocked 40 of the 50 shots he faced, was tagged with the loss.
NOJHL NOTES — The Daily Press three stars of the game were Caron, Brousseau and Smith … The Rock went 2-5 on the power play, while the Gold Miners were 0-2 with the man advantage … Saturday night’s only other contest saw the French River Rapids edge the Lumberjacks 6-5 in overtime in Hearst. Games between Espanola Eagles and Thunderbirds, in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., and the Elliot Lake Wildcats and the Eagles, in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., were postponed because of the winter storm … The Rock will return to action on Sunday when they welcome the Rapids to the McIntyre Arena. Game time is set for 2 p.m.