The Plymouth Whalers will open the first round of the 2012 OHL playoffs at 7:05 p.m. Friday against the Guelph Storm at Compuware Arena.
The Whalers finished the season with a 47-18-2-1 record, good enough for first place in the West Division and second place in the Western Conference, just two points behind the London Knights.
The Storm finished in fourth place in the Midwest Division with a 31-31-2-4 record. Guelph enters the playoffs in 7th position in the Western Conference.
The Storm are led by right wing Zack Mitchell who has 37 goals and 38 assists for 75 points. Right wing Scott Kosmachuck has 30 goals and 59 points for Guelph this season.
Plymouth has enjoyed strong goal scoring throughout the lineup. Seven Whalers have at least 20 goals this season. Stefan Noesen's 38 goals and 82 points lead the team.
Whalers goalie Scott Wedgewood has played 43 games this season to earn a .911 save percentage and 28 wins.
The teams last met Feb. 18 in Plymouth where the Storm stomped the favored Whalers 9-1.
Whalers, Storm have playoff history:
In 2007, the Whalers swept the Storm in the Western Conference quarter finals on route to the championship.
The teams have met in the post season eight times, including this year, since the Storm moved from Hamilton in 1991. Plymouth moved forward four times.
Game 2 is Sunday at Guelph. Game 3 is Tuesday at Compuware Arena and Game 4 is Thursday at Guelph.
If needed, Game 5 will be played Saturday, March 31, in Plymouth.
-- Photo by Rena Laverty -- www.PlymouthWhalers.com