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October 7, 2016
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The Wellington Dukes home winning streak is over after six games.


The visiting Georgetown Raiders put an end to that streak with a 4-3 triumph over the County boys Friday night. Daniel Berno's goal at almost the halfway point of the third period was the deciding factor in a tight hockey game.


Wellington did get on the board first over six minutes in on a Justin Bean powerplay marker. The Pickering native's fifth of the season was helped out by Carter Allen and Tyler Harrison. The Raiders would answer back with a pair of quick tallies just 33 seconds apart from two of the OJHL's best offensive players in Jack Jacome and Josh Dickinson. Jacome's eighth of the year was assisted by former Belleville Bulls draft pick Jordan Crocker and Dickinson's sixth of the season saw Andrew Court pick up a helper after a Carter Allen roughing infraction following the Jacome goal. Shots favoured Georgetown 10-8 in the period.


Mitchell Mendonca tied things up again at two with his first goal as a Duke early on in the second period from Harrison and Colin Doyle over three minutes in. The former Thorold Blackhawk, Belleville Bull and Hamilton Bulldog was playing in just his second game with the club following a four-game suspension at the Buffalo Showcase. Crocker restored the Raider lead at 9:17 on a redirection off an Austin Cho shot that eluded Connor Ryckman. Wellington did put the puck in late in the period, but the goal was waved off, denying them a chance at the tying goal. The Dukes outshot Georgetown 16-15 in another close frame.


The Dukes would get their tying goal early in the third however. Nic Mucci fired home his seventh of the season past Georgetown goalie Josh Astorino just a shade under a minute into the third for Wellington's second powerplay goal of the game. Brayden Stortz continued his point streak with another assist and Mendonca added the secondary helper on the tying goal. That would set the stage for the Berno game-winner at 9:48 of the period. Another former Belleville Bulls draft pick and a previous scoring sensation with the St. Thomas Stars, Matt McJannet, drew the only assist on Berno's fourth of the season. Despite some good chances late, the Dukes were not able to earn the equalizer, as the Raiders held on for their 10th win of the 2016-17 season. The Dukes outshot Georgetown 11-6 in the third and 35-31 for the game.


Astorino and Ryckman were both stellar in net, with Astorino stopping 32 shots for the win and Ryckman turning away 27 in the loss. Mendonca's solid play in his return to the Dukes lineup also was a highlight point of the night, and earned him second star honours. Wellington scored twice on 10 powerplay opportunities, while the Raiders scored once on three chances.


The Dukes will have a week off to recuperate after picking up just one of a possible four points in their last two games. Their next opponents will be the Newmarket Hurricanes at the Duke Dome next Friday night. The Dukes organization asks fans to please wear purple to the game in support of Child Abuse Prevention month.


Story by Brock Ormond

Photo: Mitchell Mendonca notched a goal and an assist in his first full game as a member of the Dukes following a four-game suspension. His contributions would not be enough though, as the Dukes fell 4-3 to the visiting Georgetown Raiders

Photo by Ed McPherson, OJHL Images

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