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December 16, 2016
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A hugely important East division rivalry matchup landed in the Wellington Dukes' favour in big fashion Friday night, as they handed a 7-2 trouncing to the Kingston Voyageurs.


Coming into the game, the two teams were tied for fourth in the East division and sixth in the North East conference with 37 points each, Wellington having earned two more wins. The game didn't start like the two teams were even, with the Dukes dominating the first part of the first period. Brody Morris and Rory Milne notched goals just 29 seconds apart in the first two minutes and change of the game. Morris finished off a tic-tac-toe play with Brayden Stortz and Colin Doyle for his fourth of the year, then Milne found the back of the net on a picture perfect feed from Jackson Arcan for his first goal as a Duke. The Voyageurs rebounded to control the back half of the period however, and got a goal from Adam Kim with Mitch Mendonca sitting in the box. The powerplay marker was Kim's sixth of the year. Kingston's dominating play earned them a win in the shot count, 14-8.


This didn't stop the Dukes in the second frame, as they got off to another hot start to a period. Milne would bury the rebound from a Kyle Prendel shot for his second of the game and the season. 55 seconds later, Colin Doyle showcased his workman's hustle by beating a Kingston defender to the puck and sliding it through the legs of Kingston netminder Ryan Glander. Doyle's sixth of the season chased Glander from the net in favour of backup Zach Springer, but the change in goalies didn't halt the Dukes progress. Morris would rip home his second of the game on a high, hard shot to boost the home side's lead to 5-1. Cole Edwards would cut the Wellington lead to 5-2 late in the frame, but the Dukes still held the three-goal advantage heading into the third. They also outshot the Voyageurs by a wide margin, 25-9.


The County kids would add two more tallies, both hat trick markers from Milne and Morris to round out the scoring. Things would get feisty towards the end, with Mack Warren and Cole Beckstead engaging in some fisticuffs. Then, a big melee broke out following a Keegan Ferguson crosscheck on Kingston's Andrew Suriyuth. In the end, the scrums cost the two teams over 100 minutes in penalties combined.


It was a complete team effort overall for the Dukes on Pink in the Rink night. Leading the way with a four-point effort was Doyle, joined by multi-point efforts from Milne, Morris, Stortz, Arcan and Prendel. Victor-Olivier Courchesne also earned his first win in a Dukes uniform and on home ice, stopping 34 shots in a solid performance.


Wellington improves to 18-11-1-2 and 39 points, taking sole possession of fourth in the East division. The Dukes will now get set to face two North division powers before the Christmas break. They will face the Stouffville Spirit for a matinee affair Sunday at 2 p.m., then will welcome in the Markham Royals Tuesday night at 7:30.


Story by Brock Ormond

Photo by Ed McPherson, OJHL Images

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