The University of Ottawa men’s hockey team finished its 2016-17 regular-season schedule with a 3-2 win over the Nipissing Lakers on Saturday night in North Bay.
Kevin Domingue (Laval, Que.) had two goals including the winner for the Gee-Gees (15-8-5), who battened down the hatches late to stave off a third-period Lakers (8-18-2) comeback bid.
“We have to be pleased with the season overall,” said head coach Patrick Grandmaitre, whose team outshot Nipissing 32-26 in its final regular-season game. “To finish where we are, a couple points out of home ice — there’s lots of positives.”
Johney Cormier (Havre-Saint-Pierre, Que.) opened the scoring for uOttawa at 10:45 of the first period, when his point shot beat Lakers goaltender Talor Joseph through traffic.
With Nipissing pressing in the second period, Gee-Gees goaltender Anthony Brodeur (Morin-Heights, Que.) came up with a number of quality saves to preserve the lead.
Domingue’s first goal of the night and 15th of the season at 18:03 of the middle frame gave uOttawa some much-needed breathing room, and his second of the night — a beautiful solo effort just 20 seconds into the third period — appeared to put the game to bed.
The offseason-bound Lakers had other ideas in their season finale, however, as brothers Colin and Craig Campbell scored two minutes apart to cut the deficit to one and up the intensity at the North Bay Memorial Gardens.
Brodeur stood tall down the stretch and the Gee-Gees were able to see out the victory. uOttawa will now face the Queen’s Gaels in round one of the OUA playoffs.
“We’ve proven that if we bring our game, we can challenge for a win against anybody,” said Coach Grandmaitre. “They’re highly-ranked, but we’re confident that if we’re on our game, we can create an upset.”