Cochrane halts Hearst’s winning streak with home ice victory

COCHRANE, Ont. – Four first period goals in under a five-minute span sent the Cochrane Crunch on their way to a 5-2 victory over the Hearst Lumberjacks in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League encounter Friday at Tim Horton Events Centre.

The contest was scoreless near the midway mark of the first period when Cochrane connected on the power play on a Jonas Leas effort at 9:48.

Hearst, who had won eight straight entering the match-up, came right back though on the next shift to knot the affair at 1-1 on Max Griffioen’s 23rd of the campaign.

From there though the Crunch struck three times in rapid succession to chase Lumberjacks’ starter Tomi Gagnon in favour of Nicholas Tallarico.

Leas’ second of the session and third overall made it 2-1 for the home side while Owen Perala and Austin Whelan added to the outburst to put them up by three after one.

Both sides tightened defensively in a scoreless middle stanza with Cochrane continuing to carry the three-goal cushion into the third.

It was there the Crunch added to their lead near the nine-minute mark off the stick of Justin Bofshever, who supplied his 14th overall.

Bradley Golant’s 15th brought Hearst closer with 6:46 remaining in regulation, but that’s as close as they would get before time expired.

Chipping in with two assists for Cochrane was Ethan Emanuel.

Zach Wickson began in net for the Crunch and finished with 24 saves to record the win.

Bradley Dobson had a brief stint for the Crunch and allowed one goal against.

Suffering the loss was Gagnon, who allowed four against on 13 shots while Tallarico handled 27 of 28 in long relief.