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Canadians close out 2020 in style with 5-1 win over Beavers

Rayside-Balfour back in action in New Year, but no schedule has been determined as of now
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The Rayside Balfour Canadians split their finals two games against the Blind River Beavers heading into the Christmas break. (Caleigh Fera/sudburylight.ca)

The Rayside Balfour Canadians entered the holiday break with a convincing 5-1 win over the Blind River Beavers in Chelmsford on Dec. 20.

The Canadians jumped out to an early first-period lead and never looked back in their last game of the first half of the season.

Brady Maltais struck first for the home side 5:51 into the game on the power play. 

Giordano Biondi and Nick DeGrazia drew assists on the play. 

Gavin Brown would put home the second goal of the first period for Rayside, again on the power play, at 11:17 with assists to Mitchell Martin and Joel Mongeon.

Blind River scored their only goal of the game 5:32 into the second, but it was all Rayside from there as Maltais added his second of the game at 13:30 of the same period, this time from DeGrazia and Avery Chisholm.

In the third, it was Owen Perala adding the third power-play goal of the game at 12:58 from DeGrazia and Carter Geoffroy. 

Michael Campbell would add another late tally, his first as a Canadian, with 2:36 to play on a shorthanded marker. 

DeGrazia led the way for the Canadians registering three assists, while Maltais added two goals. 

Perala, Geoffroy, Martin, Mongeon, Chisholm, Brown, and Biondi also found the scoresheet for the home side. 

Jake Marois recorded his first Northern Ontario Hockey League win in goal for the Canadians.

This victory comes on the heels of a 5-2 loss to the Beavers on Dec. 19.

The Canadians found themselves down in the first period and were never able to mount a comeback.

After Blind River jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period, and added another nine minutes into the second, Owen Perala put the visitors on the board at 9:54 on assists by  Siren and Chisholm. 

Blind River added another before the end of the frame to restore the three-goal lead heading into the third.

DeGrazia found the back of the net shorthanded 5:01 into third with Perala drawing the helper. The Beavers would seal it two minutes later with their fifth goal to earn a 5-2 victory in the matinée matchup.

Marois made 39 saves on 44 attempts for the Canadians in his second career junior start.

The Canadians are now off until the New Year, but no schedule has been determined as of now. 

Rayside struggled in the first half with a record of 3-6-1 through 10 games, but will be looking to continue their strong play from the last few games into the New Year against their next opponent.