The Barrie Colts were in Peterborough on Sunday afternoon to play the back half of a back-to-back in what was a potential first-round playoff preview. The Colts came in needing a single point to clinch a postseason berth.
The first period lacked pace early on, but after the first five minutes, things began to open up. Barrie’s best chance of the early portion of the frame came off the stick of Josh Nelson, who fired a shot off the post behind Petes netminder Hunter Jones.
Nelson, however, would get another opportunity on Jones, and this time, he converted. After Arturs Silovs robbed Peterborough’s Brady Hinz on a breakaway just as a Barrie power play expired, the Colts broke out. Nicholas Porco fired a shot overtop of the net, but the Petes failed to clear the zone. Victor Hadfield kept it in, and then Porco sent it down for Nelson, who beat Jones over the left shoulder from a seemingly impossible angle to give his club the lead. Nelson’s breakout tenure with the Colts continues with his 11th as a Colt and 15th on the year.
The Petes would respond before the period was out. Nathan Allensen went to the box for slashing, and the Petes capitalized on the man advantage. After another remarkable save from Silovs, the Petes won a faceoff back to Akil Thomas. He played it for Liam Kirk, who fed Nick Robertson. His shot from the left dot went off a Barrie body and past Silovs with 51 seconds left. Robertson’s 48th of the season knotted the game at 1 after 20.
The Petes wouldn’t let up in the second. They took it to the visitors in the opening minute, it was Robertson scoring his second of the game on a rebound off a point-shot after Mathew Hill’s ring-around didn’t escape the zone.
Then, after the Colts couldn’t convert on a 4-minute double-minor to Zach Gallant, Peterborough got a power play of their own and made the Colts pay. Former Colt Jack York set up Hinz, who went to a knee and hammered a one-timer past Silovs for his 12th to make it 3-1 Petes.
It looked like the Colts may survive the second only down 2, but Max Vrondon had other ideas. He threw one through the crease, and then was able to bury a rebound off a sharp-angle chance from Hinz. Grondon’s 12th on the year made it 4-1 and before the period was out, the Petes made it 5-1 on John Parker-Jones’ 7th, as he spun and fired it home after getting his initial shot blocked. Peterborough outshot the Colts 35-18 through two periods of play.
Any hope for a Colts comeback in the final frame did not come to fruition. The only goal of the period came off the stick of Robertson, who completed the hat-trick and reached the 50-goal plateau, making the final 6-1 in favour of Peterborough.
The Colts will look to end a four-game losing skid Thursday night when the Sudbury Wolves visit the Colts Centre for a crucial Central-Division duel. Barrie is looking for its first win against Sudbury this season.
Tickets for that game can be purchased here.