COCHRANE – Olivier Cloutier-Faucher scored once and helped set-up the winner as part of a three-point night to lead the Hearst Lumberjacks to a 6-2 decision over the Cochrane Crunch Saturday in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up at Tim Hortons Events Centre.
After breaking up a Cochrane rush about seven minutes into the contest, Hearst countered and saw Raphael Lajeunesse skate down the left wing, move to the middle and fire a shot that beat Crunch starting netminder Michael Nickolau.
The guests then added another late into a man advantage that saw Adam Rajsigl put a perfect cross-ice pass to a waiting Liam Doyle who promptly one-timed a blast into the back of the net to make it 2-0.
Special teams helped the Lumberjacks extend their cushion early in the middle stanza with Sebastien Doucet firing one through Nickolau from the left of the crease while up a skater.
The Crunch did get one back five and a half minutes into the second as Ryan Hunter’s power play point drive appeared to clip off a Hearst defender and in past goaltender Andrew Stephan.
However, the visitors got that right back, 41 seconds later on a Cloutier-Faucher effort as he wired in a shot from the right circle.
Cochrane did counter midway through the contest when Kobe Barrette corralled a bouncing puck in the slot and slammed in his first into the open corner.
Hearst then put the game away in the third as Quinton Hill, on the power play, and Pineshish Whiteduck, at even strength, finished it off helping the Lumberjacks improve to 4-0 early on the campaign.
Shots on goal finished up 45-28 in favour of the visitors with Stephan getting the win while Nickolau suffered the loss.
The two sides will finish off a three-game weekend Sunday afternoon in a 4 p.m. start at Claude Larose Arena on HockeyTV.com.
Game Photos: Emily Martin