Dukes clinch playoff spot for record-setting 35th year with big win in Lindsay

Story by Brock Ormond

Photo: Wellington Dukes/OJHL Images

The Wellington Dukes have made a 35th straight postseason appearance official.

They accomplished this Canadian Junior Hockey League record by squishing the Lindsay Muskies 8-2 on Friday night.

Responding big after a 5-0 loss on Monday in Collingwood, the Dukes erased an early 1-0 deficit by stringing together eight unanswered goals.

Defenceman Josh Rumolo got it started with his first as a Duke on the powerplay late in the first before the team broke things open in the second on tallies from Connor Hunt, Nick DiPaolo and Sacha Trudel.

Wellington’s offence stayed on the gas and relentlessly attacked the Lindsay zone, wrapping the game with four more, including a few rapid fire tallies in the late stages.

Hunt contributed a second goal to reach the 25 plateau on the year, with follow-ups from Colin Smith, Ethan Quick and Ben Vreugdenhil to put the Muskies away.

Kyle Grasby got one back on Jack Lisson, but the Dukes 17-year-old netminder still finished the night with 38 saves to help the Dukes improve to 33-18-0-3 on the year and keep tabs on second in the East Conference.

DiPaolo had the most points with three, followed by Hunt, Rumolo, Trudel, Dimitri Tzaferis and Cory Jewitt with two each.

The two teams will meet again for the final time this regular season on Sunday at Lehigh Arena at 2:30 p.m., with the Dukes recognizing their graduating players prior in a ceremony to puck drop.