Following a 21-day layoff, the Miami-Ohio Redhawks hockey team struck for the first seven goals to close the calendar year with an 8-2 exhibition victory over Windsor on Saturday.
Six RedHawks posted multiple points in the victory.
Miami wasted little time getting on the board as a neutral zone turnover ended up springing Conor Lemirande down the left wing. The senior forward beat Jonathan Reinhart five-hole and the puck slid in to give the RedHawks an early 1-0 lead with Alec Mahalak picking up the lone assist on the tally.
The RedHawks went on the power play shortly after the tally, but came up empty. However, the 5-on-5 game struck again as Josh Melnick picked off an errant pass and flung a shot from the middle that Karch Bachman redirected in to make it 2-0 at 4:48.
Kiefer Sherwood made it a 3-0 contest at the 7:17 mark at the tail end of extended possession at the end of a power play. With a delayed penalty in progress, the RedHawks worked the puck around as Louie Belpedio moved it down low to Melnick, who in turn threaded it to Sherwood, who roofed a shot to pad the lead. The RedHawks killed off one power play later in the frame and skated to the dressing room with the 3-0 lead.
Miami added a pair of goals in the second, which came just 51 seconds apart. With 10:33 left in the middle stanza, Phil Knies roofed a backhand from the middle to make it 4-0 after Ben Lown centered the puck to him. Following that, Casey Gilling set Grant Hutton up in the left wing corner and he swung a pass through the seam to Christian Mohs, who finished from in close to put the RedHawks up 5-0 through 40 minutes.
The RedHawks’ lead eventually grew to 7-0 in the third with their goal total at that point matching the Lancers shots on goal figure. After a textbook breakout and zone entry, Belpedio’s shot hit the post, but Ben Lown was camped out atop the crease and buried the rebound with Knies also earning an assist. With 5:27 gone by, Gordie Green forced a turnover in the neutral zone and sprung Melnick for a breakaway, where he finished the rush.
Windsor got on the board with a Brennan Feasey goal with 8:13 gone by and cut it to 7-2 with 6:26 left on a Dan Beaudoin tally. The RedHawks got one back with 5:48 left as Melnick finished a pretty tic-tac-toe passing display with Green and Bachman both assisting to cap the scoring.
Miami outshot Windsor by a 41-13 margin as Melnick (2g, 2a), Belpedio (2a), Green (2a), Lown (1g, 1a), Bachman (1g, 1a) and Knies (1g, 1a) all recorded multiple points. The RedHawks used three goaltenders with Larkin making four saves in the first period, Chase Muinroe making three second period stops and Grant Valentine turning aside four shots in the third.
The RedHawks resume regular season play at home on Friday, Jan. 5 when they open a league series against defending national champion Denver. Puck drop is at 7:35 p.m.