September 20, 2012
No. 1 star: Anthony Camara, Barrie Colts (OHL)
Just what the Boston Bruins need in the pipeline, a power winger, he typed sarcastically. Camara's hat-trick goal with 45 seconds left off a Mark Scheifele tip pass gave the Colts a 6-4 win over the Ottawa 67's in a game that had a bang-bang finish similar to Game 7 of the teams' playoff series five months ago.
Back on April 17, the 67's won that decisive game in OT after Scheifele tied it with nine seconds left before the din had even died down after Sean Monahan's go-ahead tally with 25 ticks on the clock. This time, there was a whole 37 seconds between dramatic goals. Ottawa's Cody Ceci, who had four primary assists, split two Colts checkers and centred to Remy Giftopoulos to tie the game with 1:22 left. The Colts regrouped, got a 4-on-2 rush and Scheifele wisely passed up a shot opportunity to tip the puck on to a wide-open Camara.
The rugged 6-foot-1, 192-pound winger had 62 points and 363 penalty minutes in his first three junior seasons. Camara could probably surpass that point total this season alone in his new role.
Camara also had another go-ahead goal earlier in the third period, banging in a goalmouth feed on a 5-on-3 power play. Colts captain Ryan O'Connor (three assists) created that play by pinching from the right point to cut off a Ceci clearing try and making a good pass before Ottawa's defenders could recover. Camara's first of the night was also a beauty, as he came down his off wing, set up a screen and snapped a shot home.
No. 2 star: Lucas Lessio, Oshawa Generals (OHL)
Lessio (2G-1A) offered a taste of what the OHL might be in for with a pair of highlight-reel goals that spurred the Generals to a 5-2 win over Peterborough. The recent Phoenix Coyotes showed that he's closer to being the confluence of good size and lethal speed many envisioned years ago, as he twice left Petes defenders with their feet stuck in mud before making a finishing move. The Generals got three-point nights from each of their Team Canada candidates, as captain Boone Jenner (2G-1A) got the next two 'Shwa salvos to put the Petes away early.
For the record, Toronto Maple Leafs first-rounder Tyler Biggs needed all of 28 minutes to use up one of his nine 'freebie' fights. The Generals winger got an instigator in a tussle with the Petes' Clark Seymour.
No. 3 star: Keegan Lowe, Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL)
Lowe (1G-2A) had a Gordie Howe hat trick — BTN gets to use that term nine times before it's automatic two-night suspension from picking the 3 stars — in the defending Western League champs' 5-3 win over the resilient Kootenay Ice. The Carolina Hurricanes pick had a game, to say the least. Lowe set up rookie Brandon Baddock's maiden WHL goal early in the game, scored himself on a drifter from the point to give Edmonton a two-goal cushion after the first period, scored a decision in a fight with the Ice's Jeff Lubic and also set up Cole Benson's third-period clincher.
Honourable mention: Jaden Lindo, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)
16-year-old Lindo (1G-1A, +2) had a memorable regular-season debut by helping Owen Sound rout the Windsor Spitfires 6-1. Lindo is a second-round draft choice whose assiduousness along the boards might help him fill a role usually entrusted to an older forward despite his rookie status. Might as well recognize him now after getting two points in his first game, even though Attack vets Cameron Brace (2G-1A) and Gemel Smith (1G-2A) also had big nights. Lindo set up Smith's second-period goal by zipping a nice low shot that was perfect for a tip-in; the Brampton, Ont., native got his goal in the third.
Potent notables — Niagara IceDogs rookie Anthony DiFruscia scored the third-period game-winner in his OHL debut, a 4-2 win over Erie. Connor McDavid had no points but was on the ice for the Otters' second goal ... Windsor Spitfires first-rounder Joshua Ho-Sang assisted on his team's shutout-snapping goal vs. Owen Sound. The Attack's Gilbert Gabor also got his first junior goal ... In the lone QMJHL game, Jacob Brennan (26 saves) backed Acadie-Bathurst to a road win over Saint John.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.