Essex 73’s One Win Away From Schmalz Cup Final

The Wingham Ironmen kept the 73’s on their toes during Game 3 of the Schmalz Cup semi-final, but fell 4-3 in OT to Essex.

Wingham had a good head start in the first period, scoring two goals in the fist seven minutes, going into the second period one goal ahead of the 73’s with a score of 2-1. Essex fought hard to stay alive, scoring twice in the second, while Wingham only scored once. Wingham captain Aaron Armstrong had two opportunities in the second to put the Ironmen up by a couple when he was awarded a penalty shot but was stopped by Darien Ekblad, low on the right blocker side. ┬áThen Armstrong had a breakaway chance minutes later but was stopped again by the Essex netminder.

Neither team scored in the third period, sending the game into overtime where the 73’s capitalized, despite being out shot by Wingham 42-23.

In overtime, Wingham got out on another breakaway, this time Ryan McNeil was stopped. Minutes later, Essex scored in a scramble in front of the net.

Jordan Ryan led the scoring for Essex with two goals, including the game winner in overtime. Tyler Scott and Philip Janikowski scored the 73’s other two goals. Justin Jacklin scored both of Wingham’s first period goals and Liam Nemett scored the other goal in the second.

Jaden Shrier stopped 19 shots for in the Wingham crease while Ekblad made 39 saves.

Essex now leads the series 3-0 with Game 4 in Wingham Sunday night at 7pm.

In the other series, Lakefield beat Grimsby 5-2 to go up 2-0 in that best of seven.

–With files from Kirk Dickinson