After winning two straight at home in Port Colborne, Ontario at the Vale Centre, the third place (23-3-0-1) Niagara Whalers returned to action on Monday December 18th against the eighth place (9-16-0-1) Riverkings in Oshawa, Ontario in a south division Greater Metro Hockey League match – up.
Kellan Rosenbaum and Jakob Reeves set up Ethan Spaxman of the Whalers 1:29 into the opening period to give Niagara a 1 – 0 lead. With an unassisted goal for the visitors, Reeves regsiters his second point of the game to bring the lead to 2 – 0 at 11:59 of the period for the Whalers. Ryan Dreossi sends a pass to Riverking Liam Banavage to pull Oshawa within one at 13:56 of the first period. Niagara’s John Swiatek adds to the lead 2:38 into the second with the Whalers third of the contest with Elias Berglund and goaltender Will Harvey notching the assists on Swiatek’s goal. Scoring his second goal of the game, Reeves increases the lead to 4 – 1 at the 4:26 mark of the period with David Christopher and Rosenbaum setting up fourth of the game for the visitors.
With the hosts on a power play at 11:24 of the second, Oshawa’s Quinn Chevers closes the gap to two with Justin Gillis and Banavage adding the helpers on Chevers power play marker. Berglund gives the Whalers a three goal cushion at 18:23 of the period for the Whalers with Micthell Chasetelet and Christopher registering the contributors on Berglund’s goal. With 57 seconds remaining in the period, Swiatek sends Niagara into the second intermission leading 6 – 2. Rosenbaum and Berglund had the assists on the Whalers sixth of the game. On a power play, Jarra Shifara fires a pass to Oshawa’s Nik Tsatsos for the Riverking’s third of the game at 17:02 of the final period. Nick Pastorious and Christopher net the helpers on Erik Peavey’s power play goal with seven seconds left in the game to give the Whalers a 7 – 3 win over the Riverkings. Niagara goaltender Will Harvey turned away 23 of 26 shots in the Whalers 24th win of the 2017 – 2018 season.
The Whalers will close out their 2017 portion of the schedule with a December 22nd match – up in St. George, Ontario against the Ravens in a 7:30 p.m GMHL start.