Clinton collects four points for G&CC Atoms
By Pat Payton
It was a good Shamrock night for St. Marys minor hockey as three ‘BB’ teams picked up two wins and a thrilling tie against their rivals from Dorchester last Wednesday night at the PRC.
The Firefighter Peewees rallied from a 3-0 deficit to gain a late 3-3 tie with the Dragons. The game–featuring two undefeated Shamrock teams–was quite likely the most exciting of the night. Both teams went into the contest with identical 6-0-1 SHL records.
Dorchester, a good-skating, puck-moving team, opened the scoring late in the first period on a powerplay. The visitors added two more goals in the middle frame, and appeared to be in control at that point.
Just when it looked like defeat was imminent, Firefighters pulled out the tie by playing outstanding hockey for the final six minutes of the contest.
Brock Chessell finally broke the ice, tipping home a pass with 5:03 left to play. After taking a perfect feed from captain Ryan Hodkinson, Finn Stewart pulled the Rock to within a goal with 3:24 remaining.
Coach Dwain Smith pulled goalie Carter Froggett, for an extra attacker, with 1:24 left on the clock. Just 12 seconds later, Nate Schiedel tied the score from Lucan Vernooy.
Firefighters continued to apply pressure in the final minute, giving themselves a couple of good chances to win it.
Aggressive forechecking turns tide
“Early in the game, we weren’t attacking the puck in their zone or in our zone,” coach Smith said afterwards. “Dorchester was coming out of their zone too easily and putting pressure on us.
“If we attack the puck like we did in the last five minutes, for the whole game, it would have been a totally different game. We had two guys on the puck and we went to the net. Froggie (Froggett) played an amazing game, without him it could have been 8-0 for them after two periods.”
What did his team learn from the game, Smith was asked.
“We have to aggressively forecheck every shift,” he replied. ”We told the boys, ‘look at the results you got in the last five minutes playing that way.’”
The St. Marys Peewees are off to the 63rd annual Mitchell Peewee tournament this weekend, Nov. 9-11. Returning to league play, Firefighters host first-place Strathroy Jr. Rockets (7-2-2), just two points ahead in the standings, on Wednesday, Nov. 14 at 7:10 p.m.
Four points for Clinton
The Golf and Country Club ‘BB’ Atoms doubled their Dorchester counterparts 4-2 last Wednesday night.
Sparking the offence were Myles Clinton and Finn Wright, with two goals apiece. Clinton also earned a pair of assists for a four-point night. Brody Higham chipped in a pair of assists, and Julian Walsh recorded the net win.
The Rock led 3-0 after two periods, but the Dragons closed the gap with two goals in the first five minutes of the third. Wright added an insurance tally midway through the period, sealing the St. Marys victory.
The G&CC squad improved its SHL record to 5-1, and handed Dorchester (5-1-3) its first league loss in the Atom Central division.
For Reg Clinton’s crew, it was a good tune-up for the Huntsville Atom Rep. tourney, which the team is entered in this weekend, Nov. 9-11.
Boonstra fires winner
Also earning a win over their Dorchester counterparts last Wednesday was the ANAF ‘BB’ Bantams. Defenceman Mason Boonstra’s third-period goal stood up as the winner as Brandon Boyd’s squad emerged with a 3-2 victory.
“The Rock came out with plenty of energy, but was quickly unravelled by some undisciplined play,” coach Boyd noted.
After Dragons took a 1-0 lead early in the second period, Maurice Kiestra tied it late in the frame after taking a pass from Keegan Nethercott.
Kaleb Schalk scored just 65 seconds into the third, but the Dragons quickly tied it back up, 2-2. After an end-to-end rush, Boonstra buried the go-ahead goal just over two minutes later.
“The Bantam staff were not pleased with the effort, and expect a more composed team in order to compete in the Strathroy Olympics this weekend,” Boyd summed up.
The ANAF Bantams are now 8-1 in Shamrock action, and have allowed only nine goals against in those nine games. They return to league action on Nov. 14, hosting first-place Strathroy (11-1) at 8:30 p.m.
Nov. 5 SHL games
On Monday, Nov. 5, the Finnbilt ‘BB’ Novices skated to their third straight Shamrock League win when they doubled the visiting Dorchester Dragons 4-2.
The teams were tied 2-2 going into the third period.
Dan Dittmer scored twice to pace the Rock offence, with Dominic Marziali and affiliate player Andrea Dingman both contributing a goal and an assist. The playmakers were Graeme Froud and Will Jacobs, who earned two assists apiece.
A busy team of late, Todd Dittmer and his Finnbilt Novices entertain St. Thomas Jr. Stars on Monday, Nov. 19, starting at 6:45 p.m.
Frayne Bantams move into first
In another SHL game at the PRC on Nov. 5, the Frayne Custom Cabinets A-E Bantams and Strathroy Jr. Rockets were deadlocked 0-0 after two periods. After Strathroy opened the scoring early in the third, Rock captain Jake Littlejohn tied it with a nice low shot from the point.
Jr. Rockets picked up a five-minute major penalty midway through the period, giving St. Marys a lengthy powerplay. Dale Switzer’s squad applied good pressure, but they couldn’t get the go-ahead goal and had to settle for the 1-1 tie.
Kiefer MacNeil played well in net for the home team.
The Frayne Bantams’ hard-fought tie with Strathroy improved the Rock’s record to 8-2-2 in the Shamrock standings. It left St. Marys alone in first place, one point ahead of Mt. Brydges Cougars (8-1-1).