Team will be heading to the International Silver Stick tournament in the New Year
By Pat Payton
It’s been a great start to the 2019-20 season for the Home Building Centre Additional-Entry Peewees.
As of last week, Reg Clinton’s squad was 9-2-1 in the Shamrock League standings — second only to the front-running St. Thomas Jr. Stars (11-0-1). In their first 12 SHL games, the Rock had scored 52 goals and allowed only 16 against.
The HBC Peewees also played some solid hockey in Collingwood last month, winning the Regional Silver Stick title and earning a spot in the International event in Pelham next month (Jan. 9-12). The Rock went undefeated in Collingwood, winning four games and tying another. In their five Silver Stick games, the team gave up only five goals.
“It’s been a total commitment by all the players to play for each other and play team defence,” coach Clinton told the Independent. “Positionally, everybody has been doing their jobs . . . they’ve all bought in.
“We’ve really worked on getting the puck out of our end, and trying to keep possession of the puck in the other team’s end . . . not just dump and chase. We’ve had really good success tiring teams out.”
Skating team this season
The early-season success has helped “energize” the team, Clinton says.
“That’s been a real positive. We really push the three forecheckers, two on the puck and the other waiting to pick off the turnover when it comes. We’re a skating team, we’re a smart team, and we like to use each other out there. Nobody’s afraid to let the other guy be the hero.”
Another bonus is that Clinton is “familiar” with a lot of his players. The majority of his team has moved up from the Golf and Country Club Atom ‘BB’ squad, a team he coached last season.
“We’re mostly a first-year team,” he says. “We have four second-year players, and they’re all returning players. We also have some really good leaders, both on the ice and in the dressing room.”
The team’s only two losses in league play have come against Strathroy (5-0) and St. Thomas (2-1)
“It was a great game against St. Thomas; we did everything but score the tying goal in the last two minutes,” Clinton said. “St. Thomas is mostly a second-year A-E2 team, so we held up against them really well.”
St. Marys could possibly meet Strathroy at the upcoming International Silver Stick tournament and in the OMHA playoffs.
“Our guys will be ready for them,” the coach said. “We’ve kind of circled Strathroy as a team we have to get past, so we’ll be excited to play them again.”
In a fast-paced SHL home game last Monday (Nov. 25), four unanswered third-period goals lifted the HBC Peewees to a 4-0 victory over Ilderton Jets. Both goalies were rock solid over the first two periods, and the teams entered the final 15 minutes deadlocked 0-0.
Defenceman Nathan Wolfkamp’s goal with 8:25 to play finally broke the tie. Kaleb Dingman (powerplay), Jonah Lariviere and Sam Johnson (empty-netter) tacked on insurance goals in the final six minutes. Trevor Aarts, who made a couple of outstanding stops in the second period, earned the shutout for St. Marys.
2019-20 HBC Peewees team roster
Goalies Trevor Aarts and Isaac Cousineau, Kaleb Dingman, Brody Tubman, captain Nathan Wolfkamp, Simon Greig, Connor Wheeler, Andre Mollet, Simon Taylor, Graysen Porter, Myles Clinton, Jonah Lariviere, Finn Wright, Sam Johnson and Grier Mahoney.
Notes: Joining Clinton on the bench are assistant coach Brent Nairn, who has “a ton of hockey experience,” assistant coach/manager Tyler Dingman, assistant coach/goalie coach Dennis Aarts, and trainer Doug Johnson.
–The HBC Peewees play their home games on Mondays, starting at 7:10 p.m.
–Coach Clinton also notes that his team is involved in the Chevrolet Good Deeds Cup promotion, which inspires young hockey players to do “random acts of kindness” off the ice. “We’re going to submit pictures and a video; it’s a contest for all Peewee-age teams,” he said. “We’re trying to boost a little positivity in the community.”
The Chevrolet Good Deeds Cup seeks to inspire young Canadians to do good by transforming the positive values learned through hockey into good deeds within their communities.