Hat trick leads Rangers win

Zach White goes top shelf – South Grenville Rangers forward Zach White (#10, left) scored early in the third period as the Rangers scored nine goals against the visiting Gatineau Hull-Volant January 28. The Rangers maintain their hold on first place in the National Capital Junior Hockey League standings and are two points ahead of the second place North Dundas Rockets. (The Leader/Blancher photo)

CARDINAL – The South Grenville Rangers held on to first place in the National Capital Junior Hockey League, thanks to their 9-5 win over the Gatineau Hull-Volant, and some help from unexpected places.

Vincent Busseau opened the team’s scoring seven minutes into the game for South Grenville Saturday night. The visitors countered a few minutes later, but a power play goal by Colin Stacey, and a second by Busseau set the Rangers up for a 3-1 lead after 20 minutes.

Busseau polished off his hat trick early in the second period, followed by a goal from Connor Van Luit.

Gatineau pulled two goals back in 80 seconds midway through the period. Rangers led the Hull-Volant 5-3 into the third period.

Van Luit’s second goal of the night (power play) rolled past Gatineau goalie Mathieu Coggins. Frustration continued for the visiting team as the Rangers piled on the goals. Zach White, Jakob Beauvais, and Stacey added a goal each as the Rangers’ neared double-digits. Gatineau scored twice late in the third period, resulting in a 9-5 win for South Grenville.

The Ranger’s goalie Andrew Cristea earned the win between the pipes. Cristea, one half of the Rangers goalie duo with Wyatt Perras, lead the league with lowest goals-against (80), wins (22) and has the only combined goals-against-average below 3.0 (2.86).

South Grenville’s January 29 game against the Clarence Castors was postponed to February 4 due to Sunday’s snow storm.

The Rangers (22-4-2-0) remain on top of the NCJHL standings, two points ahead of the North Dundas Rockets. The Rockets lost 8-5 to the St. Isidore Eagles January 28.

Up next, South Grenville have only one game February 4, the rescheduled game against the Castors.

The Rangers’ next home game is February 11 against the Morrisburg Lions.

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