The OHL regular season is officially in the books after Sunday’s conclusion of the 2018/2019 campaign, with the Hounds picking up a 5-2 win over the Saginaw Spirit,
The Hounds closed out the season against their west division rival, the Saginaw Spirit, who ousted the Hounds for top spot and never looked back, claiming the title of division champs.
While the game in terms of placement meant little, there has been a healthy rivalry between the teams this season, and neither side was keen on taking their foot off the gas pedal before the playoffs start.
Once again, the Hounds held a pre-game ceremony celebrating their graduating group of players. Friday night honoured Sambrook and Villalta, while Sunday gave light to Hollowell, Howdeshell and Frost.
Ethan Taylor was given the nod in net, while Matt Villalta was not on the bench for this one, stemming from his injury sustained making a save Friday. Zeppa played backup.
Tye Kartye would get the ball rolling for the Hounds, spinning and firing after the Hounds kept the pressure on. Assists for Kartye’s fourth are handed to Pytlik and Kerins. The Hounds dictated the pace of play in the first 20, outshooting the Spirit 16-7. The game could have easily been 2 or 3 to 0 for the Hounds if it wasn’t for a handful of miraculous saves for Lennox who started for the Spirit.
The offensive outburst would come in the second, seeing the Hounds post 4 in the frame. Trott buried two, with Sambrook and Wawrow earning one themselves. Wawrow scored his first of the year in the last game. The Spirit had no answer for the Hounds, who were again down in shots 34-22.
In the third the Spirit would manage to pick up two goals, but both teams played the remaining period fairly conservatively. Both teams know they’re destined for solid playoff runs and no reason to get injured in a game that means little.
The Hounds now look ahead to their first round playoff series with the Owen Sound Attack, which kicks off with game one on March 21st at 7 PM. The Hounds will host Game 2 on March 23rd, and games 5 (March 29th) and 7 (April 2nd) if necessary.
The Hounds won both meetings against the Attack this season, with November 24th’s 7-4 victory, and February 3rd’s 3-2 win.