Chatham Maroons goaltender Brendan Johnston faces some shots from his teammates during warm-ups. March 5, 2017. (Photo by Matt Weverink)

Nationals Take Game 2, Beat Maroons 7-2

The London Nationals scored four unanswered goals in the first half of their 7-2 win over the Chatham Maroons in London Saturday.

The Nationals tie their GOJHL Western Conference semifinal series with the Maroons at one win apiece, with Game 3 set for Sunday night at Chatham Memorial Arena.

Maroons head coach Ron Horvat said this is a game his players would love to have back.

“They’re just not feeling good about themselves and I think tomorrow they’re going to rebound,” said Horvat.  “They (London) were ready.  They caught us off guard.  They got that first one and we just couldn’t regroup.  It was just one of those games tonight.”

The Nationals took advantage of the home crowd and scored first early.  Harlen VanWynsberghe gave London a 1-0 lead with the only score of the first period.   London returned from the first intermission and scored three unanswered goals.  Isaiah Payne doubled the Nationals lead within the first two minutes of the middle frame.  This would be followed by goals from Brandon Glover and a power play score from Max Vinogradov.  The Maroons finally got on the board at 15:04 in the second when Nolan VandenBoorn found the net.

London picked up where they left off in the third period with three more consecutive goals, from Brenden Trottier, Colin Wilson and Connor Schmalz, all within the first six minutes of the frame.   The Maroons replaced goaltender Brendan Johnston with Lucas Patton after the Wilson goal.    VandenBoorn accounted for all of Chatham’s scoring when he scored on the power play later in the period.  Cameron Zanussi had 31 saves for the Nationals.

Horvat said they do not mind the quick turnaround before Game 3.

“I think that’s a good thing, because right now we have a sour taste in our mouth,” said Horvat.  “There’s nothing better for a sour taste than a quick game, instead of sitting on it.”

The puck drop for Game 3 is scheduled for 7pm Sunday, with all of the action broadcast live on CFCO Country 92.9 FM/AM 630.