GROWLERS WIN ROUND 2 OF KELLY CUP PLAYOFFS!
The Newfoundland Growlers punched their ticket to the Eastern Conference Finals in style Monday night at Mile One Centre with a commanding 5-1 victory over the Manchester Monarchs to take the North Division Finals series 4-2.
Zach O’Brien opened the scoring 4:52 into the game, cutting across the front of the net and sliding the puck past Charles Williams to continue his hot streak and to give the Growlers an early 1-0 lead.
O’Brien added his second of the period with 2:40 remaining in the first, re-directing a Garrett Johnston shot in the back of the Monarchs net, and just 21 seconds later Matt Bradley added another to give the Growlers a 3-0 lead after the opening 20 minutes of play.
Garrett Johnston continued the offensive rout at the 5:14 mark of the second period, roofing a wrister glove-side marking his first career playoff goal, and Zach O’Brien completed the hat-trick just under two minutes later on the powerplay, giving the Growlers a 5-0 lead. O’Brien’s tally marked the end of Charles Williams’ night, as he was replaced by Cole Kehler after allowing five goals on 16 shots.
Manchester got on the board at 5:42 of the third period after Tony Cameranesi cleaned up a mad scramble in Michael Garteig’s crease for a 5-1 score, but that’s as close as the visitors would come as the Growlers would hang on for the 5-1 win and advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.
- Hudson Elynuik returned to the lineup after missing the last five games with an injury
- Zach O’Brien finished the series with 13 points
- The three stars were 3 – M. Power (NFL), 2 – M. Garteig (NFL) and 1 – Z. O’Brien (NFL)
The Newfoundland Growlers begin round three Friday night in Estero, Florida against the reigning Eastern Conference Champions, the Florida Everblades. Puck drop is 9 p.m. Newfoundland time. Fans can tune into Chris Ballard’s call of the game on mixlr.com/nlgrowlers.