MISSISSAUGA, Ont. - Already without its two best players, the Owen Sound Attack didn't do themselves any favours in Thursday night's tie-breaker game at the MasterCard Memorial Cup.
With stars Joey Hishon and Garrett Wilson both missing through injury the Attack were shorthanded seven times and Kootenay took full advantage, with Matt Fraser scoring two power-play goals en route to a 7-3 victory and a berth in Friday's semifinal against the Mississauga St. Michael's Majors.
Owen Sound's lack of discipline came a night after the Attack surrendered nine power plays to the Mississauga St. Michael's Majors in a 3-1 loss Wednesday night.
"All of the penalties last night and tonight definitely hurt us," said Attack forward Robby Mignardi. "Tonight we did a great job of staying out of the box in the first period for the most part. Again in the second period, we got a little bit too emotional and got on the referees a little bit. They're just doing their job and we were getting on them. We got away from our game plan which was to just keep it simple."
The undisciplined play had carried over from Wednesday night's game.
On top of a Fraser's power-play goals, the Ice also scored a pair of shorthanded goals, with Joe Antilla and Max Reinhart counting.
"Any time in a game when you get a short-handed goal it works for you," said Fraser. "At that point in the game (when the Reinhart goal was scored), there was still time left in the game so there was still lot of time for them to score some goals, so it was good to get the goal and create some separation."
Kootenay forward Cody Eakin, who set up Antilla's second period shorthanded marker, said following Thursday's game that the key to their power play is keeping things simple.
"We're not trying to be too cute out there. We're trying to stay as a meat-and-potatoes kind of style. When you do that you generate a lot of shots and there's a lot of traffic in front so you know there's going to be some rebounds."
The loss marks a disappointing end to a strong season for the small-market franchise that won the Ontario Hockey League's Western Conference title and the first OHL championship in team history.