VIDEO / GALLERY: Rock blank Rapids, lead series 2-0

Timmins Rock goalie Gavin McCarthy was beaten on this shot off the stick of French River Rapids forward Dominik Godin during the first period of Game 2 of their NOJHL East Division semifinal series at the McIntyre Arena Friday night, but the puck sailed wide of the post. Rock blue-liner Cameron Dutkiewicz, who scored the game-winning goal in his team’s 2-0 victory, was on hand to lend support, while Godin’s teammate Levi Siau was hoping to pounce on a juicy rebound. It was one of the few solid chances the Rapids were able to generate in the contest, as the Rock took a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. THOMAS PERRY/THE DAILY PRESS

Gavin McCarthy stopped all 30 shots he faced to backstop the Timmins Rock to a 2-0 win over the French River Rapids in Game 2 of their NOJHL East Division semifinal series at the McIntyre Arena Friday night.

Thomas Perry
The Daily Press/Postmedia Network

The victory gives the Rock a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series, with action set to switch to the Noelville Arena on Sunday, at 7 p.m.

“It took us a while to get going, but once we got going there was nothing they could do to hold us back,” McCarthy said.

“We were buzzing around the O Zone and my job was pretty easy tonight.

“We kept everything to the outside and I couldn’t ask for much more from the boys.”

McCarthy wasn’t surprised to see the Rapids display an increased compete level after the Rock beat them 6-2 Thursday night.

“After a game like Thursday night, we knew they were going to have a good push back,” he said.

“No one wants to go on a road trip and come home empty handed.

“They put up a good fight, but we were better.”

Even though the Rock outshot the Rapids 12-10 in the first period and 16-10 in the middle stanza, the contest remained scoreless heading into the third period.

The Rock were finally able to snap the scoreless duel at the 1:12 into the frame with blue-liner Cameron Dutkiewicz netting his first goal of the playoffs.

Twelve minutes later, fellow blue-liner Carson Cox provided the Rock with a little insurance when he netted a power-play marker, his first goal of the playoffs.

The Rapids continued to press until the end of the contest, pulling goalie Justin Dilauro with just under two minutes remaining in regulation in favour of an extra attacker.

Even though that strategy generated a number of opportunities, the Rapids were unable to get the puck past McCarthy.

After getting his first NOJHL playoff win in his first playoff game Thursday night, the Rock goalie got his first shutout and second playoff win in his second playoff game Friday night.

What’s next, scoring his first playoff empty net goal?

“That would be nice, wouldn’t it,” McCarthy said.

In stopping all 30 shots he faced, McCarthy not only recorded his first NOJHL playoff shutout but also earned his second playoff victory in as many starts.

Dilauro, who turned aside 42 of the 44 shots the Rock directed his way, was tagged with the loss.

NOJHL NOTES — The Daily Press three stars of the game were McCarthy (30 saves, win, shutout), Dilauro (42 saves) and Dutkiewicz (game-winning goal) … The Rock went 1-5 on the power play, while the Rapids were 0-2 with the man advantage … Official attendance at the McIntyre Arena was 962 … Friday’s other action saw Powassan Voodoos edge the Lumberjacks 4-3 in Hearst to even that series at 1-1 and Eagles get past the Greater Sudbury Cubs 5-4 in overtime in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., in the first game of their West Division semifinal series.

“Highlight of the Night” – NOJHL YouTube Channel