SMMHA Boys AE Tournament - Great weekend for Rock teams, News (St. Marys Minor Hockey)

News Article
News Article Image
Oct 26, 2017 | jbrock | 958 views
SMMHA Boys AE Tournament - Great weekend for Rock teams
From: Pat Payton, St.Marys Journal Argus
Three St. Marys teams earned spots in Sunday’s division championship games, but all three had to settle for the silver medals.

The event was the annual Additional-Entry (A-E) hockey tournament, hosted by the St. Marys Minor Hockey Association. A total of 32 teams in five age divisions competed over four days. Over 60 games, on both ice pads, were played at the PRC this past weekend.

Four Rock teams represented the SMMHA—Stonetown Foodland Novices, Dunny’s Source for Sports Atoms, Home Building Centre Peewees, and the Frayne Custom Cabinets Bantams.

The Novices, Atoms and Bantams all advanced to their respective championship games. The Peewees also played some good hockey, winning three games and finishing second in their pool. The HBC squad was eliminated in the Sunday morning semi-finals.

Bantams allow just four goals

Four Rock teams represented the SMMHA—Stonetown Foodland Novices, Dunny’s Source for Sports Atoms, Home Building Centre Peewees, and the Frayne Custom Cabinets Bantams.

The Novices, Atoms and Bantams all advanced to their respective championship games. The Peewees also played some good hockey, winning three games and finishing second in their pool. The HBC squad was eliminated in the Sunday morning semi-finals.

The Frayne Bantams won three of their first four games by shutouts. Going into Sunday’s final, Brent Rae’s squad had allowed just two goals.

However, in the championship game, the Rock appeared to run out of gas and dropped a 2-0 decision to Mitchell Meteors.

It was a well-played game between two evenly-matched teams.

The first goal didn’t come until early in the second period when Mitchell scored a shorthanded marker. Meteors added a second goal just under four minutes later, capitalizing on an odd-man rush.

Kaleb Schalk missed on a breakaway late in the period, and Mitchell took its two-goal advantage to the third.

St. Marys pulled goalie Nich Kiestra for an extra attacker with 1:30 remaining, but couldn’t penetrate the solid Meteors’ defence.

“I think we ran out of steam,” coach Rae said following the game. “Mitchell kind of carried the play to us, and we didn’t respond. What made us successful all weekend was working hard and cycling the puck down low, but I think we ran out steam in this game. We were (pinned) in our end a lot.

“Mitchell’s a good team, but they’re beatable. We can beat them for sure. It’s a team we’ll see in Silver Stick.”

Rae said he still pleased with his team’s performance this weekend.

“They started buying into the systems, and they saw it working for the first time.

“It was a good weekend for the boys, but it wasn’t quite the result we wanted.”

The Frayne Cabinet Bantams started their weekend with a solid 5-0 victory over Ayr Flames Friday morning.

The Rock built period leads of 2-0 and 3-0 in a dominating performance. Most of the second period was played in the Ayr zone.

After scoring a late 5-on-3 powerplay goal in the third, St. Marys capped the win with an empty-netter with 45 seconds left on the clock.

Carter Reid, Alex Var and captain Loghan Hodkinson did most of the damage on offence. Reid clicked for three goals and an assist, while Var fired two goals and assisted on another.

Hodkinson was the playmaker, collecting three assists, while goalie Jack Aarts recorded the shutout.

“We played a full game for once,” coach Rae said. “Everybody was going and skating and winning the battles.

“We’ve been preaching all year, but that was our first complete game where we kept the pedal down the whole game.”

The Frayne Bantams picked up another shutout Saturday morning in their second game, skating to a 4-0 win over Penetang.

The shutout went to Nich Kiestra.

Kirk Boreham paced the offence with a pair goals, while the singles went to Zach Rooney and Kaleb Schalk. The Rock led 2-0 after the first period.

The Frayne Bantams finally got scored on, but the team still won its third straight game, 6-2, over Paris Saturday afternoon.

Kirk Boreham and Carter Reid paced the St. Marys offence with two goals apiece, while the singles went to Aaron Vernooy and Loghan Hodkinson.

Hodkinson, Alex Var and Kaleb Schalk all contributed two assists.

The Rock led 2-0 after the first period and 3-1 going into the third.

With their 3-0 record, Brent Rae and company finished first in their pool.

In their semi-final game Sunday morning, the Frayne squad continued their strong defensive play with a 3-0 victory over Paris.

After a scoreless first period, St. Marys led 2-0 after two periods.

Scoring for the Rock were Carter Reid, Kaleb Schalk and Jeremy Stephens, and Nich Kiestra earned the shutout.

Foodland Novices

The Stonetown Foodland Novices started their weekend with a 4-1 loss to South Huron Sabres early Friday morning.

Sabres scored three unanswered third-period goals to claim the win.

Ben Ewing scored the lone goal for Dan Murrell’s crew.

On Saturday afternoon, the Foodland Novices held a territorial advantage against Collingwood but ended up dropping a 4-3 decision to the Blackhawks.

It proved to be an entertaining game for the fans.

Ben Ewing scored all three goals for the Rock and was named player-of-the-game for his team.

The Hawks held period leads of 1-0 and 2-1, and pulled ahead 3-1 and 4-2 in the third. After Ewing completed his hat trick with 1:42 to play, coach Murrell pulled his goalie for a sixth attacker. Parker Levy had a good chance in the final minute, but the puck stayed out.

Ewing, Levy and Harper Murrell were three standouts for St. Marys.

After the game, coach Murrell said his team was competitive in both of their first two games.

“We’ve been very competitive,” Murrell said. “Against Exeter yesterday, we lost 4-1 and we had lost to them by 10 goals a week and a half ago. We’ve came a long way in just a week and a half.

“Today against Collingwood, their goalie made some big saves—especially at the end. We couldn’t buy one to tie it.”

Murrell says he and his coaching staff have been stressing to their players to get pucks to the (opposition) net.

“It’s just simple things in Novice, like moving the puck and going to the net,” he noted. “It’s just building skill development with these kids.”

In the semi-finals Sunday morning, the Foodland Novices punched their ticket to the final with a last-minute 3-2 victory over the same Collingwood team.

Harper Murrell’s second goal of the game came with just 45 seconds to play. “It was a beauty,” assistant coach Justin Ewing reports.

Ben Ewing added a goal and an assist.

In Sunday afternoon’s final, a tired St. Marys Novices gave it everything they had in a narrow 2-1 loss to South Huron.

Sabres used a swarming type of defence to limit the Rock’s scoring chances.

South Huron opened the scoring in the first period with a shorthanded goal.

The home team did a great job of killing off a 5-on-3 Sabres powerplay in the second period.

After South Huron scored what proved to be the winner at 1:10 of the third, Ben Ewing scored for St. Marys just over a minute later. Ewing also had a couple of good chances late in the game that were stopped by the Sabres’ goalie.

Dunny’s Atoms

The Dunny’s Source for Sports Atoms started their weekend very early Friday morning with a 6-1 victory over Huntsville Otters.

Jared Ballantyne and Jonah Lariviere both scored twice for Sean Porter’s squad, which jumped out to a commanding 4-0 first-period lead.

The net win went to Isaac Cousineau.

The Dunny’s Atoms improved to 2-0 Friday afternoon with a hard-fought 3-1 victory over Collingwood Blackhawks.

In the fast-paced and entertaining contest, the Rock jumped out a 2-1 first-period lead on goals by Myles Clinton (shorthanded) and Sam Johnson.

Only the play of the Blackhawks’ goalie kept it close in the second period. A pretty breakaway goal by Connor Wheeler finally put St. Marys up by two.

Collingwood hit the crossbar on a powerplay midway through the third, and pulled their goalie in the final minute, but Hawks couldn’t pull any closer.

Trevor Aarts got the net win for the Dunny’s crew.

“We’ve been playing a real team game,” coach Porter said. “I haven’t had a group of kids like this for a while.

“They move the puck around and there’s not a lot of selfish hockey. The goaltending has stood up and made the saves when we’ve needed them.

“It’s just the little things that are really helping us out. We have a good group of kids, who don’t like to lose. It makes it fun to come to the rink and watch them play.”

In Dunny’s third game Saturday, the Rock and Ayr settled for a 1-1 tie.

Both goals came in the third period. Jared Ballantyne, of St. Marys, scored with less than two minutes to play to tie it.

The net win went to Isaac Cousineau.

In a tie-breaker, the Dunny’s Atoms (2-0-1) finished first in their pool.

In their semi-final game Sunday morning, a second-period goal by Jonah Lariviere lifted the Atom Rock to a 1-0 win over Collingwood.

Trevor Aarts picked up the shutout.

The Atoms’ rematch with Ayr was another hard-fought game. It also featured good goaltending at both ends of the ice.

St. Marys held a territorial edge for most of the contest, but it was the Flames who opened the scoring.

Finally, with just over three minutes to play, Rock captain Ty Wheeler tied it. Just under a minute later, an end-to-end dash and goal put Ayr back in front.

Coach Porter pulled his goalie in the final minute, and the Dunny’s squad tried desperately to score in a couple of wild scrambles around the Flames’ net.

It was the only loss of the weekend for the home-town Atoms, who held a 22-10 edge in shots in the final game.

HBC Peewees

The Home Building Centre Peewees started their weekend, playing the very first game of the tournament Thursday night against Minto.

Led by centre Lucas McCurdy’s two goals, Greg Smale’s squad skated to a 5-2 victory. The singles came off the sticks of Jake Grant, Carson Brock and Tim Neufeld.

Ezra Bender picked up the net win as the Rock built period leads of 2-0 and 4-1.

Coach Smale was happy with the win, but noted there was also room for improvement.

“We’re a really good puck-moving team,” Smale said. “We work together really hard, but there are times when we forget about the game plan and we get a little individual.

“It’s our sixth game of the year, and it’s early, so those kinds of things are going to happen.

“We like to forecheck and push the pace, and play as a five-man unit. We feel that if we can do that, we can accomplish a lot. Every time we touch the ice we want to get better, that’s the goal.”

In their second game Friday morning, the HBC Peewees pulled out a come-from-behind 3-2 win over Huntsville Otters.

“It was probably our best team game of the year,” coach Smale said following the game.

Captain Lucas McCurdy fired a pair of goals for St. Marys, including the winner early in the third period which snapped a 2-2 tie.

Will Boreham had the other Rock goal.

In their third game Saturday morning, the HBC Peewees blanked Listowel 3-0 with Bender again notching the shutout.

The Rock goal-scorers were Ethan Connolly, Lucas McCurdy and Gavin Mills.

St. Marys took a slim 1-0 lead into the final period.

After just a few hours rest, Smale’s crew was back on the ice to face Erie-Northshore—a team with five girls on it.

Erie-Northshore held period leads of 2-0 and 2-1 and then tacked on two third-period goals for a 4-1 victory.

Will Boreham scored the lone Rock goal.

With the loss, the HBC squad finished second in their pool.

In their semi-final game Sunday morning, the St. Marys Peewees were sidelined after losing 2-0 to Ilderton Jets.

Jets held a slim 1-0 lead after two periods, and then clinched it with a goal midway through the third.