A Gregory Trudeau-Paquet shootout goal was the difference as the Powassan Voodoos held off the defending Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League champion Hearst Lumberjacks 4-3 in a Friday evening match-up at the Powassan Sportsplex.
The victory was the Voodoos 18th in a row as the improved to an NOJHL-best 20-1 on the season.
Going to the power play in the opening half of the first frame, Powassan got on the board at 8:16 when Jacob Peterson-Galema collected his second marker of the campaign to take the lead into the intermission, despite being outshot 17-9.
Hearst came out quickly in the middle session and knotted the affair at 1-1 a half minute in when Max Griffioen tallied for a fourth straight outing and ran a consecutive game point streak to seven while giving him points 13 of his past 14 contests.
Regrouping, the Voodoos retook the lead a couple of shifts later when Tomas Yachmenev buried his 12th and gave him at least one point in 10 straight match-ups and in 17 of the 18 times he has played to date in 2019-20.
Moving on to the third period, the Lumberjacks drew level once more on a Jake Desando tally.
Answering again, the home side went back on top at 13:51 with Peterson-Galema collecting his second of the night.
Continuing to battle, the visitors forced overtime late in regulation as they saw Olivier Cloutier-Faucher notch the equalizer.
The Voodoos fought off a lot of adversity on this night as they needed to kill off a late third period penalty to Parker Bowman which carried over into the overtime allowing the Lumberjacks to start the five minute OT session with a four-on-three powerplay.
However, the Voodoos were able to kill the penalty and after a scoreless OT, extra shots were needed to determine the result.
Griffioen started the shootout by slipping one through the pads of Powassan netminder Owen Say.
After a miss by both sides, the Voodoos’ Seiji Martone skated in and roofed one on Hearst’s Rahul Bola.
Then, after the Lumberjacks David Gobeil was thwarted by Say on their third attempt, Trudeau-Paquet went slowly along the right side and when Bola came out for a poke check, he slid the decider underneath him to extend Powassan’s impressive winning streak.
The Voodoos’ Say made 27 saves to come away victorious in his 14th start, in as many appearances, while Bola’s 38-save effort helped his squad earn a point in defeat.