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ITO Three Stars & Power Rankings: Week 9

Welcome back for another edition of the ITO Power Rankings, as well as our Three Stars for the week of November 14th-20th. We have now reached the point in the season where the standings won’t mean as much to the Power Rankings as how a team has been playing recently, and we should start to see teams fluctuate up and down as they go through the ebbs and flows of the Ontario Hockey League season.

ITO 3 Stars

1. Tanner Pearson (Barrie Colts) – The league’s leading scorer continued putting up points at a rabid pace this week, registering ten points in just three games. After picking up an assist Thursday against Sudbury, Tanner would have a huge game in Ottawa a night later, scoring three goals including the overtime winner, and adding three assists in a 6-5 win. Sunday afternoon, Tanner would help out on all three goals, as the Colts would defeat Kingston 3-1. With ten points, three of them goals, Tanner Pearson was a clear choice as the ITO 1st Star of the week.

2. Tyler Toffoli (Ottawa 67’s) – It only makes sense that the league’s second leading scorer would be this week’s 2nd Star, as Tyler Toffoli earns the nomination with a big week of his own. Toffoli’s week began with a two goal, three point performance against Barrie on Friday night, helping the 67’s earn a point. After being kept off the scoresheet in Belleville the next night, Tyler would finish the week big, racking up three goals and five points in a 5-2 win over Niagara. By scoring five goals and three assists in three games over the weekend, Tyler Toffoli is the ITO 2nd Star for Week 9.

3. Mark Visentin (Niagara IceDogs) – Mark finds himself back in the ITO Three Stars this week, as two shutouts in the same week is just too much to ignore. Mark would stop all 24 shots he would face in a blanking of Mississauga on Thursday, and kept rolling a night later, stopping 16 shots for another shutout in Kingston. Despite being hooked early in a loss to Ottawa on Sunday afternoon, Mark’s performance this week is worthy of being our Third Star for the week.

ITO Power Rankings

1. London Knights – (Last Week: 1) The London Knights continue to reign atop the OHL Power Rankings this week, though their lead on the rest of the league is beginning to shrink. The Knights started the weekend off with a loss on home ice to Plymouth, but would take both ends of a home and home series with Owen Sound to retain the top spot. This week, London hosts Barrie on Friday night, then play in Erie and Brampton on Saturday and Sunday.

2. Plymouth Whalers – (Last Week: 3) Plymouth has registered 19 points in the last ten games, and kept the streak alive by winning all three games over the last week. After an overtime win in Windsor on Thursday, the Whalers would defeat London and Kitchener over the next two nights, wrapping a perfect week. Looking ahead, Plymouth hosts Saginaw on Wednesday night, has Peterborough come into town for a Friday night game, and finishes in Guelph Saturday.

3. Sarnia Sting – (Last Week: 2) Not even winning two of three games this week was enough to stop the Sting from slipping a spot this week, landing at number three. A Thursday night loss at home to Kitchener would prove to be their undoing, despite winning both ends of a home and home series with Saginaw over the weekend. Sarnia gets a rematch in Kitchener coming up on Sunday afternoon, but not before playing host to Barrie on Thursday and Niagara on Saturday.

4. Kitchener Rangers – (Last Week: 5) Two wins in three games helps the Rangers climb to the number four spot this week. A big win in Sarnia on Thursday was followed by a blowout win over Erie the next night. Only a Saturday night loss to Plymouth kept Kitchener from enjoying a perfect week. The Rangers play three home games this week, starting Tuesday against Guelph, and playing games Friday versus Erie and Sunday against Sarnia.

5. Peterborough Petes – (Last Week: 8) Peterborough climbs into the top five this week, winning two of three games to stay in the hunt in the East Division. The Petes would split a home and home series with Belleville during the week before defeating Windsor on Saturday night. Peterborough heads out on the road this week, playing games over the weekend in Plymouth, Saginaw, and Windsor.

6. Brampton Battalion – (Last Week: 4) The Battalion slide two spots to number six this week, after picking up three points over a three game weekend. Brampton started the week by losing a shootout in Saginaw Thursday night, then lost to Sault Ste. Marie the next night. The Battalion would rebound on Sunday to end the week, posting a shutout over Sudbury. Brampton plays a pair of weekday games this week, playing in Mississauga on Wednesday and Niagara on Thursday. After a couple of days off, the Battalion will end the week at home, taking on London.

7. Ottawa 67’s – (Last Week: 7) The 67’s find themselves holding firm at number 7 this week, and they seemed to get better as the week progressed. Ottawa would start out the week with a tough OT loss at home to Barrie on Friday, but rebounded to win both weekend games, winning in Belleville before knocking off Niagara to end the week. Just two games on tap for the 67’s this week, as they will host Oshawa on Friday night, before a Sunday matinee in Kingston.

8. Belleville Bulls – (Last Week: 6) Belleville drops a couple of spots this week, after dropping consecutive games. After winning the opener of a home and home series with Peterborough on Wednesday, the Bulls would drop game two, and then lose again on Saturday to Ottawa. Belleville will play three times this week, playing in Erie on Thursday and Guelph on Friday. The Bulls finish the weekend on Sunday afternoon when they host Oshawa.

9. Guelph Storm – (Last Week: 14) Guelph is one of this week’s biggest movers, climbing five spots this week to land at number nine. The Storm would only play twice in the last week, but would win both games, knocking off Oshawa at home on Friday night, and shutting out Erie a night later. After a light week, Guelph will make up for it in the week ahead, as they play four times in the next seven days, beginning Tuesday night in Kitchener. The Storm return home for a couple of games on Friday and Saturday, hosting Belleville and Plymouth, before finishing the week in Mississauga on Sunday afternoon.

10. Barrie Colts – (Last Week: 15) Another team leaping up the Power Rankings, the Colts find themselves at number 10 this week, after winning three big conference games. Barrie would defeat Sudbury on Thursday night, picked up an overtime win a night later in Ottawa, and wrapped up the week in style, with a win at home over Kingston. A tough week lies ahead for the Colts, however, as they hit the road to play against two of the top teams in the league, in Sarnia on Thursday, and in London on Friday. Barrie completes three games in three nights when they return home to tangle with Sudbury on Saturday.

11. Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds – (Last Week: 10) The Greyhounds are down one spot this week, after splitting a pair of games in a relatively quiet week. The Soo would register a big win over Brampton on Friday night, but would lose on home ice just two nights later, dropping a decision to Mississauga. Another light week for Sault Ste. Marie lies ahead, as the Hounds play just two times once again, both at home. Saginaw comes into town for a Friday night contest, and Owen Sound visits one night later.

12. Owen Sound Attack – (Last Week: 12) The Attack are able to remain at twelve this week in the Power Rankings, even though they earned three points in three games over the last week. Owen Sound would defeat Erie on Wednesday night, but found themselves unable to build on the momentum, losing both ends of a home and home series with a highly touted team from London. Only two games are on the schedule for the Attack this week, as they head out for games in Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie on Friday and Saturday.

13. Niagara IceDogs – (Last Week: 13) The IceDogs remain at 13 this week, despite winning two of their three games. After shutouts against Mississauga and Kingston on Thursday and Friday nights, Niagara would lose the weekend finale in Ottawa. On deck for the IceDogs this week, they host Brampton on Thursday night, then set out on the road, making stops in Windsor on Friday night, and Sarnia Saturday.

14. Mississauga St. Michaels Majors – (Last Week: 9) Mississauga continues to struggle through the month of November, losing two of three games this past week. Losses in both Niagara and Sudbury last week sent the Majors plummeting down the Power Rankings, despite a win over Sault Ste. Marie on Sunday night that ended a four game losing streak. Mississauga will look to right the ship in the coming week, playing three times, yet not having to play games on back to back nights. The Majors host Brampton on Wednesday, before heading to Kingston for a Friday night contest. Mississauga finishes the week with a contest at home to Guelph on Sunday afternoon.

15. Sudbury Wolves – (Last Week: 11) Sudbury found themselves spiralling down the Power Rankings this week, falling four spots. The Wolves would lose to start the week in Barrie on Thursday, but returned home to knock off Mississauga the very next night. Sudbury would be shut out by Brampton Sunday afternoon on home ice, causing the slide. Just a pair of games await the Wolves this week for them to stop the freefall, as they host Owen Sound on Friday night, and play again in Barrie on Saturday.

16. Windsor Spitfires – (Last Week: 17) Windsor earned three points in three games this past week, and the end result sees them up one spot in the OHL Power Rankings. Thursday night, the Spits would drop an overtime loss to Plymouth, then turn in an ugly performance in a loss in Peterborough on Saturday. Windsor responded well, earning the win in Oshawa the next evening, which allows them to leap past the Generals this week.

17. Oshawa Generals – (Last Week: 16) Oshawa went winless this past week in three tries, earning just a single point for their efforts. Starting with a loss on the road in Guelph on Friday night, the Generals would drop home ice decisions to Kingston in overtime on Saturday, and to Windsor on Sunday evening. The loss to Windsor would see Oshawa slip one spot this week. The Generals play a pair of road games in a light week, playing in Ottawa on Friday evening, and in Belleville on Sunday afternoon.

18. Saginaw Spirit – (Last Week: 18) No change for Saginaw this week, as they would lose two of three matchups last week. The week would start well for the Spirit, as they would pick up a shootout victory over Brampton on Thursday, but would lose both ends of a home and home series with Sarnia, preventing Saginaw from gaining on the teams in front of them. The Spirit begin on the road this week, playing games in Plymouth on Wednesday and Sault Ste. Marie on Friday. Saginaw returns home for a Saturday night contest with Peterborough.

19. Kingston Frontenacs – (Last Week: 19) Kingston remains near the bottom of the OHL Power Rankings, but managed to pick up a win out of three contests this week. After being blanked by Niagara on Friday, the Frontenacs would head to Oshawa, where they would spoil Oshawa’s anniversary party with a come-from-behind overtime victory. The following afternoon, however, Kingston would lose in Barrie, halting momentum. The Fronts have a pair of home games this week, and will try to keep up their better play of late. Kingston hosts Mississauga and Ottawa on Friday and Sunday, respectively.

20. Erie Otters – (Last Week: 20) I don’t think things can get any worse for fans in Erie. My father’s pick as a team to watch this season, the Otters have seen their season flushed down the drain by a horrific start. Losses in Owen Sound and Kitchener this week were compounded by being shutout on home ice by Guelph. Erie would score just twice in their three contests this week, and now have just three wins in their first 22 games. The Otters play three games in three nights this week, hosting Belleville on Thursday, before playing in Kitchener Friday evening. Erie wraps the week up back at home on Saturday evening, hosting London.

The ITO Three Stars and Power Rankings can be found every Tuesday here at In The O… The Radio Show. Be sure to check back next week to see where your favourite team ranks, but if you can’t wait for your OHL fix, find me on Twitter, @N24Nicholson.

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