Frontenacs hang on for one-goal win over Battalion

Kingston Frontenacs forward Brett Neumann scored three goals and added two assists to lead the Frontenacs past the North Bay Battalion 7-6 in an Ontario Hockey League game at the Leon's Centre on Friday night (Ian MacAlpine/Whig-Standard File Photo) Ian MacAlpine / Ian MacAlpine/Kingston Whig-Standard/Postmedia Network

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The Kingston Frontenac outscored the North Bay Battalion 4-2 in the second period to claim a 5-3 lead, but they still needed another pair of goals in the third to finish off a 7-6 victory in an Ontario Hockey League on Friday night at the Leon’s Centre.

Ultimately, the game wasn’t decided until Paul Larabie’s empty-net goal with 47 seconds left in the third period gave the Frontenacs a 7-5 lead, but even then the Battalion didn’t throw in the towel.

North Bay, which turned a 6-3 early third-period deficit into a one-goal game with a pair of goals in the middle section of the frame, followed Larabie’s goal with Mason Primeau’s third strike of the game, at 19:48 to make the final 7-6.

Most of Kingston’s offence was fuelled by Brett Neumann, who had a five-point night on his first career three-goal game and two assists. He figured in the team’s final four goals, scoring twice in the second period as the Frontenacs gained a 5-3 lead and then assisting on Billy Constantinou’s power-play goal at 5:56 of the third that upped Kingston’s lead to 6-3 and also collecting a helper on Larabie’s empty-netter. Neumann leads the current members of the team with 18 goals.

Also tallying for Kingston were Matt Hotchkiss, 1:54 into the game to open the game’s scoring, and Lucas Rowe, who followed Neumann’s first goal, at 2:30 of the second period, with one of his own 80 seconds later to put the Fronts ahead 3-1 at the time.

Replying for the Battalion were Primeau, also with his first career hat trick, Justin Brazeau, with a pair, and Nick King.

The win snapped a three-game Kingston losing streak, during which the Eastern Conference’s cellar-dwelling Frontenacs (now 8-19-1-0 for 17 points) were outscored 22-6. North Bay, which is
ninth in the conference, lost for a third consecutive time and for the sixth time in seven games. The Battalion’s record dropped to 11-14-1-1, seven points ahead of the Fronts.

The Frontenacs travel to Oshawa on Saturday for a 3:30 p.m. game against the Generals.

Kingston never trailed in the game. The teams were tied 1-1 after the first period before the Frontenacs went ahead 3-1 in the opening four minutes of the second. They then split four goals in the remainder of the middle frame to make it a 5-3 game heading into the third. North Bay outscored Kingston 3-2 in the third.

The Frontenacs, playing in front of a crowd of 3,156, outshot the Battalion 37-36 in the game, but were at a 16-12 disadvantage in the third when the visitors attempted to rally.