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Gryphons draw first blood in opening game of playoffs

Kyle Neuber scores twice and Carlos Amestoy has a goal and three assists to lead U of G men over Windsor

The Guelph Gryphons weren't about to spend much time figuring out the Windsor Lancers in the opening game of their OUA men's hockey West Conference quarter-final series Thursday night at the Gryphon Centre.

"It was a good start tonight and that's what we needed," Gryphon coach Shawn Camp said. "We got our feet moving early and when we do that, good things happen for us."

The Gryphs hit for a pair of goals in the first six minutes of the game and had a four-goal lead by the end of the first minute of the second period on their way to a 6-2 win to start the best-of-three series.

"I think it was just focus and being prepared," rugged winger Kyle Neuber said. He led the Gryphs with a pair of goals. "A lot of guys came out for the morning skate. We knew they were going to have a long bus ride. We had a good practice yesterday and I think we just combined it into a really good start for us."

"We got off to a good start in each of the periods," Camp said. "I'm really proud of the guys for the way they kept their focus. That was so critical for us because we've been in the situation before where we had a lead and not stayed on the accelerator. Tonight it was critical that we maintained the shift-to-shift intensity and good starts to periods always help."

Carlos Amestoy, Thomas Kohler, Rob De Fulviis and Cody Thompson also scored for the Gryphs while Amestoy was credited with three assists, Reilly O'Connor, Rob Lepine and De Fulviis had two each and Len Fabbri, Nick Trecapelli and Seth Swenson had one each.

"We've always said that we do things by committee," Camp said. "Our offence comes by committee and Kyle Neuber had a great game tonight for us. He's a big body that goes to the net hard. He scored a couple of great goals and he was disciplined, too. When you have you big, toughest guy play like that and contribute offensively and be disciplined the way he was, there's no excuse for anyone else not to play in a disciplined way."

"We were here last year and it' a long, long grinding playoffs," Neuber said. "You have to take a couple of hits and you'll get a power play and you'll eventually capitalize on it. We were the more disciplined team today and it ended up in a win."

Justice Dundas and Sebastian Beauregard scored for Windsor.

The Gryphs outshot the Lancers 38-27 and Andrew D'Agostini picked up the win in net.

Guelph finished the regular season in fourth place in the conference at 16-11-1 while Windsor was fifth at 14-11-3.

"As we move forward here it's going to be about playing consistently well from shift to shift and making sure that we're disciplined," Camp said.

Second game of the series is set for Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Windsor. If a third game is needed, it's to be played Sunday at the Gryphon Centre starting at 7:30 p.m.