By Ken Pagan
With the game tied 4-4 in the third period, the grinders helped make the difference for the Hamilton Kilty B’s.
Mason Reeves fired home the game-winner after a faceoff win by Mark Duarte to give the Kilty B’s a 5-4 lead with 12:26 remaining on their way to a 7-4 win over the Fort Erie Meteors in Game 3 of their first-round series at Dave Andreychuk Mountain Arena, Monday.
The Kilty B’s now lead the series 3-0 with Game 4 in Fort Erie on Wednesday.
The line of Duarte, Reeves and Freddy Teeple combined for three goals and eight points to power Hamilton’s attack.
“You just have to get pucks deep and work through the physicality and try to stay disciplined and not take any penalties,” said Teeple, who had four goals and 184 penalty minutes during the regular season, but now has two goals and three points in three playoff games.
“It’s important for the playoffs to not take any penalties,” Teeple said. “Ken (Peroff, head coach) tells me to keep my composure and not take any penalties, so I don’t. I’m enjoying it. I really like the way our line is playing now with Reever and Duarte. We’re working really hard and I think we can keep escalating things from here.”
Duarte had three assists on the night while Reeves had two goals. Holden Rogers also scored twice, while TJ Hughes and Lucas Thompson had one each.
Nathan Reichel scored twice and Drew Passero and Cail Cirillo had one each for the Meteors, who were outshot 43-33.
Goaltender Cal Schell made 29 stops in the win.
The Kilty B’s have a chance to sweep the series in Game 4 on Wednesday in Fort Erie.