BLIND RIVER, Ont. – A Ryan Mulligan goal 14:51 into the second period proved to be the game-winner as the Blind River Beavers went on to pull out a narrow 2-1 triumph over the Rayside-Balfour Canadians in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League matinee Sunday afternoon at the Blind River Community Centre.
Rayside-Balfour did start off by getting the lead just past the four-minute mark of the first period when Matthew Dokus-Dupuis clicked on the power play with assists going to Benjamin Hatanaka and Brandon Atkins.
Moving on to the middle frame, Blind River drew level midway through the session thanks to Ryan Peck who tallied in his opening game with the Beavers.
Skating in his 162 NOJHL contest, veteran defenceman Mulligan was then credited with the difference maker as he finished off a Brendan Young feed.
Both teams tightened up even more from there the rest of the way with nether side being able to generate any more goal production before time expired.
Much of that was due in part to the play of the respective goaltenders in Garret Boyonoski of Blind River, who made 42 stops to record the win, and Sebastien Plamondon of the Canadians, who finished by handling 39 of the 41 attempts fired his way in the narrow defeat.