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5 points each for Golant & Desando as Hearst thumps French River

HEARST, Ont. – Bradley Golant and Jake Desando recorded five points apiece Saturday to help power the Hearst Lumberjacks past the French River Rapids 9-3 in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up in front of nearly 700 spectators at Claude Larose Arena.

Hearst came out strong and grabbed a 2-0 lead after one period of play thanks to a power play marker from Blaise Arkle at 6:53 followed by a Desando even strength effort a couple shifts later.

It was more Lumberjacks in the first half of the second stanza as they tacked on two more to go up by four with goals from Golant and Arkle.

French River got on the board late in the session when Philippe Daoust struck shorthanded at 18:28 for his 15th of the season.

Hearst however answered that 29 seconds later with their third power play tally of the night, which came off the stick of Alec Johnson to make 5-1 after two.

Special teams were prevalent early in the third as the Rapids Will Frustaglio and the Lumberjacks Golant both picked up quick man advantage markers.

After Ryan Smith brought the visitors closer at 5:55, the home side put the game away with late tallies from Christian James-McDonald, Max Johnson and Austin Heidt’s first NOJHL goal to win going away.

Golant added three assists while Desando had four helpers to complete their five-point nights.

The Lumberjacks outshot the Rapids 60-26 on the night with Tomi Gagnon picking up the win and Carson Murison the loss.