North American Juniors

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 4-20-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#9 Charlottetown Islanders 1 @ #1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 3 (Game 1)
Armada leads series 1-0

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 3 SOG, 3/10 FO
Playoff Totals: 7 GP, 8-5-13, +12, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

Emile Samson (2018 draft eligible) stopped 19 of 20 Islanders shots to lead the Armada to a Game 1 victory in the QMJHL semifinals. Bolt prospect Alex Barré-Boulet returned to the Armada lineup after sitting out Game 5 of the quarterfinal series against Moncton after suffering an injury in Game 4. The Armada got goals from three skaters, the first of which a Joel Teasdale (2018 draft eligible) marker just 1:35 into the game. After a late 2nd period equalizer by Charlottetown’s Derek Gentile (2018 draft eligible), the Armada got goals from Alexander Katerinakis (2018 draft eligible) and Alexandre Alain (undrafted) in the 3rd period to pull away. The teams are right back at it Saturday for Game 2 in Boisbriand.

Ontario Hockey League

#2 Kitchener Rangers 2 @ #1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 3 (Game 1)
Western Conference Finals
Soo lead series 1-0

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 0-1-1, +2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Playoff Totals: 12 GP, 11-9-20, +11, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-43-85, +53, 30 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 0-1-1, +2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 3/3 FO
Playoff Totals: 12 GP, 8-10-18, +5, 10 PIM
Season Totals (SSM): 28 GP, 18-21-39, +14, 14 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 33-50-83, +24, 30 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

The Soo rallied from a 2-1 deficit behind a pair of goals from Conor Timmins (COL, 2017 2nd round pick), including a dramatic game-winning shortie with 1 second left in regulation. It was a heartbreaking loss for Kitchener as the Greyhounds snatched a victory in Game 1 of the OHL Western Conference finals. Bolt prospect Taylor Raddysh (pictured) earned the primary assist on the heroic Timmins short-handed game-winner, and fellow Bolt prospect Boris Katchouk earned an assist on Timmins’ equalizer earlier in the 3rd period. The Rangers jumped out to a 1-0 lead midway through the 1st period with Blue Jacket prospect Kole Sherwood and Adam Mascherin (FLA, 2016 2nd round pick) set up a Connor Bunnamen (PHI, 2016 4th round pick) power play goal. After Jack Kopacka (ANA, 2016 4th round pick) knotted the score at 1-1 with a power play goal of his own for the Soo, Sherwood and Mascherin would once again set up a Kitchener power play marker, this time from the stick of Givani Smith (DET, 2016 2nd round pick) to give the Rangers the 2-1 lead. The Soo and Rangers square off for Game 2 Saturday in Sault Ste. Marie.

Lightning Inks F Otto Somppi to Entry Level Deal

TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed forward Otto Somppi to a three-year, entry-level contract, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today.

Somppi, 20, skated in 59 games with the Halifax Mooseheads of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League this season, recording 28 goals and 83 points to go along with 28 penalty minutes. He led the Mooseheads for assists (55), points and plus/minus (plus-39). Somppi’s 55 assists ranked sixth overall in the league. The Helsinki, Finland native has also appeared in two QMJHL playoff games, posting one assist. During the 2017-18 season, he served as an assistant captain for Halifax.

The 6-foot-2, 188-pound forward has skated in 178 career QMJHL games, all with the Mooseheads over the past three seasons, collecting 58 goals and 170 points to go along with 83 penalty minutes. Somppi represented Finland at the 2017 World Jr. Championships, skating in five games and registering one goal.

Somppi was drafted by the Lightning in the seventh round, 206th overall, at the 2016 NHL Draft.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 4-17-18

Ontario Hockey League

#4 Owen Sound Attack 7 @ #1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 9 (Game 7)
Western Conference Semifinals
Soo win series 4-3

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 3-1-4, +3, 0 PIM, 5 SOG, 1/2 FO, *First Star*
Playoff Totals: 11 GP, 11-8-19, +9, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-43-85, +53, 30 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 1-3-4, +4, 4 PIM, 5 SOG, 5/8 FO
Playoff Totals: 11 GP, 8-9-17, +3, 10 PIM
Season Totals (SSM): 28 GP, 18-21-39, +14, 14 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 33-50-83, +24, 30 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

Katchouk notched a hat trick and four points to lead the Soo in a wild 16-goal Game 7 victory, earning a berth in the Western Conference finals against the Kitchener Rangers. Katchouk capped off a five-goal 1st period with a short-handed marker with just 12-seconds left to give the Soo a 4-1 lead at the first intermission. He added an even strength goal in the 2nd to extend the Greyhound lead to 5-1, and the teams exchanged goals with the Soo taking a 6-2 lead into the second intermission. The Attack would mount a furious comeback, scoring five 3rd period goals, but Katchouk would score a power play marker that would eventually be the game winner to complete his hat trick. Raddysh would scratch out an empty netter late in the game to preserve the Soo victory, his only goal of the game. Raddysh would muster three assists on the night, for a four-point game of his own. Noah Carroll (CAR, 2016 6th round pick) would also score a pair of goals for the Greyhounds. Right-handed blueliner Sean Durzi (2018 draft eligible) starred for Owen Sound, scoring a pair of goals and ringing up a game-high five points.

The Soo and Rangers square off Friday and Saturday for Game 1 and 2 in Sault Ste. Marie. Katchouk is tied for 1st in OHL playoff goals and sits third in points.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 4-16-18

Western Hockey League

#2 Swift Current Broncos 6 @ #1 Moose Jaw Warriors 0 (Game 7)
Eastern Conference Semifinals
Broncos win series 4-3

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoff Totals: 14 GP, 0-0-0, -6, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 71 GP, 7-19-26, +35, 62 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Stuart Skinner (EDM, 2017 3rd round pick) turned away 25 Moose Jaw shots, pitching a Game 7 shutout. Former Blues prospect and now Flames free agent signee Glenn Gawdin scored twice and added two assists, as the Swift Current Broncos punched their ticket to the WHL Eastern Conference finals against the Lethbridge Hurricanes. The Broncos had their backs against the wall after Game 5, down 3-2 in the series, and then preceded to outscore the potent Warriors offense 13-1 in elimination games 6 and 7. Devils free agent signee Colby Sissons, Tyler Steenbergen (ARI, 2017 5th round pick), an Aleksi Heponiemi (FLA, 2017 2nd round pick) all had multi-point games.

For Bolt prospect Oleg Sosunov, he could join the Syracuse Crunch for their Calder Cup Playoff run, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the organization allows him to close out his season. After scoring 7 goals and 26 points in a breakout campaign in his first year in North America, Sosunov hit a wall down the stretch statistically for the Warriors. He was never scratched, even on a loaded Moose Jaw blueline, but the offense dried up in the last 15-20 games of the regular season and the playoffs. There’s certainly something to be said for never having too much depth for the Syracuse playoff run, but one gets the sense that Sosunov kind of ran out of the gas. Unlike the watch on Otto Sompii, Sosunov does already have an NHL contract with the Lightning.

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