Sports Local Hockey

Barrie Colts forward Alexey Lipanov sets up pair of goals for Russia

By Rob Gowan, Sun Times, Owen Sound

Barrie Colts forward Alexey Lipanov had a pair of assists for Team Russia against Team OHL on Thursday night in Owen Sound. The Russians skated to a 5-2 win. MARK WANZEL/FILE PHOTO

Barrie Colts forward Alexey Lipanov had a pair of assists for Team Russia against Team OHL on Thursday night in Owen Sound. The Russians skated to a 5-2 win. MARK WANZEL/FILE PHOTO


A cold wind created a chill across Owen Sound on Thursday night, but inside the Harry Lumley Bayshore it was the Russian squad that put a chill over Team OHL.

Team Russia took the third game of the Canada-Russia Series, 5-2, over Team OHL in front of 3,116 fans at the Lumley-Bayshore.

Barrie Colts forward Alexey Lipanov assisted on Russia’s second and third goals of the game, including the eventual game-winner off the stick of Artyom Manukyan, who plays for Omsk Avangard in the KHL. Manukyan scored a pair of pivotal goals, with Lipanov assisting on both.

Barrie native Jacob Ingham, who plays for the OHL’s Mississauga Steelheads, was named to Team OHL for the game in Owen Sound, but didn’t get the start. The Team OHL coaching staff instead opted to start Peterborough Petes netminder Dylan Wells between the pipes. Wells allowed four goals on 17 shots.

The Russians now hold a 6-3 lead in points with the fourth game of the series slated for Monday night in Sudbury. The Russians and Team WHL split their two games, with the Western Hockey League all-stars blanking Russia, 7-0, on Monday night, but Team Russia bounced back to take Game 2 of the series, 4-3.

Game 3 was the first meeting between Russia and Team OHL.

“It was real fast-paced, a lot of skill out there and both teams were battling really hard,” said Nick Suzuki of the Owen Sound Attack. “I think if we capitalized on some of our breakaways the game would have been a lot different.”

Suzuki is slated to play again on Monday night when the series heads to Sudbury.

“I am definitely real motivated to get a win (on Monday),” Suzuki said. “I think we can take a lot of good things away from this game and improve going into Monday.”

It was actually Team OHL that struck first in the game when Taylor Raddysh of the Erie Otters scored on a penalty shot 36 seconds into the contest after he was wrapped up by Russian defender Nikita Makeyev.

But the Russians struck next at the 7:31 mark of the first period when Dmitri Samorukov scored on a point shot after his team won the faceoff.

Team OHL went to work on the power play and had several good scoring chances, but it was Russia that took the lead with the man-advantage when Manukyan accepted a pass across the crease and fired it into an open cage behind Wells.

Team OHL tied up the game at the 7:59 mark of the second frame with a power-play goal of their own when Adam Mascherin of the Kitchener Rangers would put one behind Russian goalie Alexey Melnichuk.

Manukyan gave the Russians the lead again when he scored his second of the game at 9:43 of the second.

And they would go up by two before the end of the period on a great individual effort by Alexey Polodyan.

Shots after two periods were 27-14 in favour of the OHL.

Team OHL came out strong in the third period, with long stretches of time spent in the Russian end, but could get very little through to the Russian goal.

And Polodyan would put the game away for the Russians when he scored an empty=netter with 52 seconds left.

Final shots in the game were 36-19 for the OHL.

Suzuki, whose brother Ryan was the first-overall pick of the Barrie Colts in the OHL Priority Selection, said despite being in front of the home crowd, he didn’t feel there was any added pressure to perform.

“It was just a lot of fun having a game at the Bayshore for this kind of series,” Suzuki said. “I just had a lot of fun with it.”

Both Suzuki and Gadjovich were at the national team’s Summer Showcase, and are hopeful to be back with some of Canada’s best world-junior eligible players when the national junior team holds its selection camp in St. Catharines on Dec. 13-15.

The 2018 world juniors run Dec. 26-Jan. 5 in Buffalo.

Suzuki said there is a great group of players vying for spots on Canada’s roster.

“Moving forward we definitely want to make a good run for the world junior tournament,” he said. “If I get picked for that it would definitely be a dream come true.”

After the Russians and Team OHL face off in Sudbury on Monday, the series heads east for a pair of games against the top juniors in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The teams will play in Charlottetown, P.E.I., on Nov. 14 and Moncton, N.B., on Nov. 16. 

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