HEARST, Ont. – A stellar start to the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League season continued for Heart Lumberjacks netminder Artem Bortovskiy Sunday as he turned aside 37 of the 38 shots he faced to backstop his club to a 4-1 triumph over the Blind River Beavers at Claude Larose Arena.
The 19-year-old from Richmond Hill, Ont., now boasts a 3-1 record for Hearst and presently leads all NOJHL goalkeepers in average, save percentage and shutouts at 0.75, .977 and two respectively.
Sunday’s match-up saw the Lumberjacks strike first late in the opening frame when Samuel Bourdages connected on a power play with 29 seconds left in the frame.
Hearst upped their lead with the lone marker of the middle stanza as Spencer Silver collected his first league marker at 13:50 of the period with the eventual game-winner.
The home side kept coming in the third with Max Johnson and Connor Green also picking up their initial NOJHL goals to put the Lumberjacks up by four.
A late man advantage allowed Blind River to dash Bortovskiy’s shutout big with just over a minute remaining in regulation thanks to Owen Robinson’s fourth as a member of the Beavers, in what was the final offensive effort of the contest.
Bob Parenteau faced 39 shots in defeat for Blind River who fell to 5-2 overall while Hearst improved to 3-2.