Kirkland Lake finishes off Espanola to advance to junior A hockey final

ESPANOLA—The Kirkland Lake Gold Miners scored the game’s first three goals and never trailed en route to a 6-2 triumph over the Espanola Rivermen on Thursday, April 3 in game 4 of their Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League semifinal series at the Espanola Regional Recreation Complex.

With the decision the Gold Miners take the best-of-seven set in four straight games and now advance to the NOJHL finals vs. the Soo Thunderbirds, who also finished off their semifinal series by knocking out the Abitibi Eskimos in four.

Power play markers by Austin Rust and Samuel Wilbur put Kirkland Lake up a pair while Kyle Bishop added one shorthanded to make it 3-0.

Nathan Campbell put the Rivermen on the board late in the opening stanza as he notched a man advantage marker with 10 seconds to go in the first.

The two sides exchanged efforts in the second with Steve Babin getting one for the Miners while Brandon Janke countered for Espanola.

The visitors put the game away in the third on efforts supplied by Damon MacEachern and Tanner Lafrance to finish off the scoring and the series.

Gold Miners’ defenceman Dan Morin had three assists for the winners while Jeremy Picard Fiset added a couple of helpers of his own to support the offensive cause.

Jeremy Pominville picked up the victory in net for Kirkland Lake while Marc Terriault started for Espanola and suffered the loss allowing four against before giving way to Kevin Labelle.

Final tally:

Game 1: Kirkland Lake 2 Espanola 1

Game 2: Kirkland Lake 2 Espanola 1

Game 3: Kirkland Lake 3 Espanola 2

Game 4: Kirkland Lake 6 Espanola 2