Campoli’s hat trick leads Rangers past Blades in wild one

PICKERING, ON - DEC 16, 2016: Ontario Junior Hockey League game between North York and Pickering, Nick Campoli #89 of the North York Rangers skates with the puck during the first period. (Photo by Andy Corneau / OJHL Images)
January 11, 2017

9:58 AM EST

There were 11 goals, 18 power plays, and a line-brawl, but the Ranger boys found a way to win.

Nick Campoli once again demonstrated his class, notching a hat trick and adding an assist, as the North York Rangers outlasted the division-leading Oakville Blades in a wild one by the score of 7-4 at the Herb Sunday afternoon.

Despite the plethora of penalties, and the wild swings in momentum, Rangers coach Geoff Schomogyi was pleased with his club’s temperament throughout the contest.

“[Our guys] did a great job,” he said.

“We really preach to our guys to keep their composure no matter what. It was a penalty-filled game both ways, I think it’s easy to lose that composure in games like that, but the guys did a great job of skating away from tough situations and realizing what the most important thing is; which is getting those two points.”

Five goals were scoring in the first period alone; four of them by the Rangers, and two by the Clarkson University committed Campoli, who was given a ton of space in the high slot at 10:03 and ripped a perfect wrist shot bar down, and then danced out from behind the net and beat Blades’ goaltender Brendan McGlynn high glove side with 32 seconds remaining in the frame; at the time giving North York a 4-1 lead.

Nick Zanette converted a centering feed from Ethan Wiseman for the Rangers’ first goal 8:48 into the contest,  while James Fletcher got North York’s other goal of the period at 15:28 when he jammed in a feed from Noah Robinson short side on McGlynn.

Campoli got his hat trick marker early in the third after Oakville’s Jack Jeffers had cut the lead to 4-2. On a set face-off play, Ture Linden won the puck back to Joey Maziarz, who quickly flipped it to Campoli for the one-timer, which knuckled off the crossbar and in at the 2:20-mark of the final frame.

Each team scored twice more, with Kyle Clarke and Robinson counting for North York, and Matt Hayami and Ryan Foss responding for Oakville, but in the end the Rangers held on for the gritty victory.

A big key was the play of Rangers rookie goaltender Jett Alexander, who started in place of North York’s usual No. 1 Jeremie Lintner, and who made 27 often-fine stops on the afternoon.

“Jeremy was sick so for Jett to step up was big,” said Schomogyi.

“I thought he was calm, composed in the net, and kept his rebounds at bay. It’s great for him and for us to have the confidence to put him a game like that and have him find a way to help the team win.”

The Blades’ McGlynn was chased after allowing four goals on 13 shots, and Chris Elliot took the loss after giving up two goals on 20 shots.

Campoli, who now has 17 points in eight games, was named South Division player of the week soon after the conclusion of the contest.

“I think Nick’s composure on the puck, the way he sees the game, and the way he makes other players around him better, are what makes him so special,” said Schomogyi.

“You put him on a line with anyone and he is going to get them to raise their game to a level they aren’t used to playing at necessarily. His composure is just unbelievable.”

Story by Jamie Neugebauer, Director of Communications

Photo by OJHL Images