67’s seek home remedy

January 25, 2017

If the Ottawa 67’s are going to shake off their current skid and make a run at an Ontario Hockey League playoff spot they will need to take advantage of the home ice of TD Place.

The 67’s have lost four games in a row — all on the road — and have an overall record of 2-8-0 in their last 10 outings.

Looking ahead, Ottawa has 21 games to play in the 2016-2017 regular season and 15 of them are at home. But the down side to that is that thus far this season, the 67’s have a better record on the road than they do at home.

Away from home, the 67’s have a tidy record of 12-12-4 as compared to a home mark of just 6-12-1. Overall, with a record of 18-24-5, the 67’s sit in seventh place in the Eastern Conference with 41 points, which is two more than the North Bay Battalion and Niagara IceDogs, who currently share the eighth-and-final playoff spot.

Ottawa’s main issues thus far have been keeping the puck out of the net with a league-high 188 goals against allowed. Scoring has not been an issue for the 67’s, who have more goals as a team than the Eastern Conference-leading Oshawa Generals.

Back of the blueline, the 67’s have the youngest corps of defensemen in the OHL featuring 1999 birth-year defender Noel Hoefenmayer and three rookies with 2000 birth dates — Peter Stratis, Kevin Bahl and Carter Robertson.

Meanwhile, between the pipes, veteran Leo Lazarev and rookie Olivier Lafreniere both have save percentages below the .900 watershed mark.

Up front, the 67’s have added some serviceable forwards as the season has gone on with OHL-tested veterans such as Jared Steege, Tye Felhaber and Zack Dorval having joined the skilled likes of Sasha Chmelevski, Artur Tyanulin, Austen Keating and Patrick White.

Ultimately it will be up to top-notch coach Jeff Brown and his assistants to find a way for the 67’s to take advantage of their home schedule and cut down on the goals against as the Barber Poles aim to maintain a playoff standing.

To be sure, Brown and his staff have created and maintained a positive atmosphere within the team — and that is a factor that could favour the 67’s as they head into the final third of the regular season.

PHOTO: Zack Dorval, formerly of the Kingston Frontenacs, in action for the Ottawa 67’s. (Photo by Valerie Wutti/Blitzen Photography.)

What you think about “67’s seek home remedy”

  1. This is a real good into depth article about the 67s. You touch on many good points from all of the area’s of the team. With such a young D core the 67s need the Goalies to be able to steal a few Games. Hopefully Coach Brown can get the boys going.

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