Games of the Week for Nov. 19-20

Happy Friday hockey fans.  I hope you had a good week and are enjoying the snow that fell this week.  We had 4 games this week, so let’s take a look at them.

The first game was Wed. night when LaSalle Vipers hosted Sarnia Legionnaires.  Both teams have been struggling lately, the Vipers with 4 wins of their last 10 games and the Legionnaires with 5 wins in their last 10 games.  Both teams have been bit by the injury bug, and some suspensions, but I thought this game would be a lot closer than it was.  The Vipers pounded Sarnia 8-2.  Story from SarniaSports.com.

Legionnaires Dropped One in LaSalle

http://www.sarniasports.com/News/2014/Nov/47.html

As one Hockey fan said “they must of watched the Leafs game.” after the Legionnaires suffered an 8 – 2 loss in LaSalle last night against the Vipers in Greater Ontario Jr. B Hockey league action.

But maybe the difference was due to several key players out of the line up that included Nathan Mater, Tyler Prong, Jordan Fogarty, Riley Babkirk and Ryan Trottier.

The Vipers struck with 2 goals in the first period, 5 in the second and added a single in the third.  Sarnia’s two goals came in the third period by Riley Roberts and Brad Campbell.

Korey Morgan, Brendan Harrogate and Brett Primeau each scored twice for the Vipers and singles by Graham Pickard and Dalton Langlois.

LaSalle outshot Sarnia 44 – 28

Shots 1 2 3 TOTALS
Sarnia 8 8 12 28
LaSalle 13 17 14 44

Hunter Johnson played 40 minutes making 23 saves on 37 shots.  Cornel Felder allowed 1 goal on 13 shots.

Paolo Battisti earned the win making 26 saves for LaSalle.

Penalties were not a major factor as both sides took just one penalty each throughout the game.  Sarnia’s lone penalty did cost the Legionnaires a goal.  LaSalle stopped Sarnia on their one power play opportunity.

The Legionnaires are now 16-6 and are sitting in second place 2 points behind Leamington (17-5) and 1 point ahead of Chatham (15-6).

Tonight (Thursday November 20) the Legionnaires are hosting Strathroy (12-12) at 7:10 pm at the Sarnia Arena.

With Friday being a PA day in Sarnia the Legionnaires are offering all elementary school students free admission when accompany by a paying adult or season pass holder.

 

The other game on Wed. was London Nationals hosting Chatham Maroons.  It looks to have been a close game, with Chatham securing the 4-2 win with 2 goals from Michael Verboom in the 3rd period.  Story from Chatham Daily News.

Verboom scores twice in Maroons’ victory

http://www.chathamdailynews.ca/2014/11/20/verboom-scores-twice-in-maroons-victory

LONDON – Michael Verboom’s two third-period goals led the Chatham Maroons to a 4-2 win over the London Nationals on Wednesday.

Verboom broke a 2-2 tie with the winning goal at 10:47 of the third period in front of 550 fans at the Western Fair Sports Centre.

He scored again with five seconds left into an empty net while the Maroons were killing a penalty.

The Maroons’ eighth win in nine games improved their record to 15-6-1 in the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League.

They’re in third place in the Western Conference with 31 points, one behind the Sarnia Legionnaires and three back of the Leamington Flyers.

The Maroons will complete their home-and-home series with the Nationals on Sunday at Memorial Arena at 7 p.m.

Jared Dennis and Trevor Richardson also scored for the Maroons in a rematch of the 2013 Western Conference final won by the Nationals.

Dennis opened the scoring at 12:37 of the first period. Richardson followed just over five minutes later on a power play for a 2-0 lead.

The Maroons got off to a strong start, outshooting the Nationals 14-5 in the first period.

The Nationals struck back in the second. Austin Kemp scored at 9:43 and Drew Worrad added the tying goal eight minutes later.

The Nationals outshot the Maroons 14-8 in the second.

The Nationals held a 16-9 shots advantage in the third as well, but Maroons goalie Bo Bessette didn’t allow one to get past him.

Bessette finished with 33 saves. Nationals goalie Logan Ferrington made 27.

NOTES: Chatham was 1-for-2 and London was 0-for-3 on the power play. … Linemates Richardson, Verboom and Brennan Feasey each finished with two points. … Feasey is tied for third in GOJHL scoring with 37 points. Verboom is tied for sixth with 34.

 

On Thurs. night, we saw Leamington Flyers hosting St. Thomas Stars.  The Stars were on a 2 game win streak and looking to extend it to 3.  The Flyers were on a 3 game streak looking to make it 4.  The Flyers took the game with a 4-1 win over the Stars.  Story from C. Scott Holland.

Flyers Down Stars 4-1; Hold on To First Place

The St. Thomas Stars’ extended their streak at Leamington’s Heinz Arena Thursday night and it’s a  streak that has not favoured them. In their last 13 games in Leamington, the Stars are 2-11, and it was their 6th straight loss dating back to 2012. For the Flyers, it was another win which kept them atop the Western Conference standings and setting up a showdown in Leamington with Sarnia on Sunday afternoon.

The Stars second visit was hampered by inclement weather as they traveled down the 401. The team was delayed about 30 min. and that delay cost them some valuable pre-game warm-up time.
Despite the blustery weather more like January, 702 fans came out and watched the contest.

Both teams played well in the first and had it not been for Stars’ starter Nikolas Dampier the Flyers might have secured a lead. Instead, Leamington outshot the Stars 11-9 and the contest was a scoreless tie. Each side had one powerplay opportunity and failed to generate a goal.

Leamington picked up the tempo in the second as they capitalized off a tripping penalty to Matt McJannet. Kyle Quick and Chris Scott hooked tic-tac-toe passes to Mitchell Amante who flipped the puck past Dampier from the right side. The tally was credited to Chris Scott on Pointstreak. The powerplay goal came at 1:25. Kyle Perkowski threaded a pass to Alex Friesen and he broke down centre ice, split the Stars’ defense and fired a shortside goal of which Dampier seemed to get a piece. Holding a 2-0 lead, the Flyers continued to press and Amante sent Tyler “the Zipper” Scott on his way through traffic. Scott eluded everyone and tried a shot from the slot on which Dampier made the initial saves before it bounded back onto Scott’s stick and Tyler lofted a backhand shot high past Dampier to make it 3-0. That goal at 1:52 was definitely the play of the game.

But St. Thomas got into the contest at 16:14, seconds after Flyers’ defenseman Ryan Muzzin was sidelined for crosschecking. Zach Grzewlewski and John Warren tried pumping the puck past Leamington starter Michael Barrett before Blair Mincer notched his first goal of the season with a tap into the right side of the net. As the buzzer sounded to end the second, the first signs of roughness were shown as Mark Brisson and Colin Moore exchanged fisticuffs along the boards in the Stars’ zone. The play was initiated when Brisson roughed Moore. Both were gone with fighting majors.

At 2:41, and after killing a penalty, the Stars surrendered the game’s final goal to the Flyers. Cale Phibbs and Perkowski made stabs at drilling a goal as Dampier danced around the crease, but it was Alex Friesen who finally popped the marker into the left side.

Tensions and frustrations increased on the Stars’ side as Leamington dominated the play. A check-from-behind handed to Leamington’s Muzzin ended in a clash of fists with Anders Adzjia. But things got evened up when the Stars took a bench minor penalty. St. Thomas had two more cracks at scoring on powerplay drives but couldn’t dent Barrett’s armour. During the final powerplay, the Stars played their best and cycled the puck well but Barrett stoned their attempts.

The Flyers outshot St. Thomas 30-28 and went one for four on the powerpay. St. Thomas had one man-advantage tally in six tries. The Flyers’ contest was the start of a busy schedule as they play another three games in the next week. They travel to St. Marys Fri. Nov. 21, then return home to host Sarnia on Sun. Nov. 23 (special game time 4:10 pm) and then travel to LaSalle Wed. Nov. 26. There is no Flyers home game next Thursday.

NOTES:  St. Thomas radio play-by-play announcer  Andrew Buttigieg was on hand to broadcast the Stars’ game on MyFM; he was joined by league historian Scott Holland who did colour commentary …It was the first appearance in Leamington by Stars’ forward Zach Grzelewski …Brett Van Dusen of St. Thomas was sitting out on suspension …With the victory the Flyers have tied Sarnia for the best home record in the West (10-2); the Stars’ road record now stands at 2-8-0-1 …Leamington’s goals-against average improved to  2.52 – the best in the West Conference while Barrett’s gaa is now an outstanding 1.98.

 

The last game this week was Sarnia hosting Strathroy Rockets.  The Legionnaires looked to turn things around as the Rockets were the team to end their win streak and started their recent slump.  The Rockets were on a 4 game win streak and 2 points from the Brock Street Barn would help in their climb up the standings.  The Legionnaires prevailed with a very close 5-4 win.  Story from Sarnia Observer.

Sarnia Legionnaires shoot down Strathroy Rockets

http://www.theobserver.ca/2014/11/20/sarnia-legionnaires-shoot-down-strathroy-rockets

The Sarnia Legionnaires squeaked out a 5-4 win over the Strathroy Rockets Thursday.

With the victory, coach Dan Rose’s squad brought its won-lost record up to 17-6, good enough for second place in the Western Jr. ‘B’ hockey standings, two points back of the Leamington Flyers.

Rose felt the triumph was important because the Legionnaires had been thumped 8-2 Wednesday evening in LaSalle.

“That was a good push-back game after what happened last night,” Rose said. “The team competed hard from start to finish. All four lines played well and the defence did things it was doing at the start of the season.”

The Legionnaires stormed into a 5-1 lead at the end of the second period. But in the final stanza they looked a little tired and started taking penalties.

Strathroy capitalized, scoring the only three goals of the period to make things close.

Defensive forward Brandon Layman scored a clutch goal for Sarnia in the second period.

“Ryan Vendramin took the puck wide and drove to the net, like we do in practice,” Layman recalled. “Then he passed it into the slot and I was there. I shot it in high on the glove side.”

For Layman, who is one of the team’s better penalty killers, it was only his fourth goal of the campaign.

“We’ve got a lot of goal scorers, I see myself as mostly a defensive player,” he said.

The Legionnaires were missing forwards Nathan Mater and Ryan Trottier to injury but they had three suspended players back in action.

“When we get all our guys back we’ll be rolling again,” Layman said.

Vendramin opened the scoring, tapping in a loose puck from the side of the net. The big forward now has 13 points in 12 games since rejoining the club last month.

Rearguard Kyler Keating made it 2-0 with a bullet drive from the point.

In the middle frame, Cody Trowell scored the prettiest goal of the game. He took a pass from Riley Babkirk and barged to the front of the net before deking the goalkeeper out of position and denting the twine. For Trowell, it was his 19th tally of the season.

Layman’s marker gave Sarnia a commanding three-goal lead.

Defenceman Brad Campbell got the eventual winner, picking up his eighth of the season with a laser beam from the slot.

Goalie Hunter Johnson made 23 saves to earn his 12th win. The Legionnaires had 30 shots on the Strathroy cage.

Rockets goals were scored by Dan Chapman, Stuart King, Ed Schulz and Nick Griffin.

The Legionnaires return to action Sunday when they travel to Leamington to face the Flyers. Their next home game is next Thursday when they host the Chatham Maroons.

 

Here are the standings heading into the weekend.

 

TEAM GP W L OTL PTS PCT GF GA PIM HOME AWAY
Leamington 23 18 5 0 36 .783 102 58 574 10-2-0 8-3-0
Sarnia 23 17 6 0 34 .739 114 82 445 11-2-0 6-4-0
Chatham 22 15 6 1 31 .705 101 70 475 7-5-0 8-1-1
LaSalle 22 12 10 0 24 .545 84 73 520 8-5-0 4-5-0
Strathroy 25 12 13 0 24 .480 90 92 466 7-4-0 5-9-0
London 22 9 12 1 19 .432 65 76 452 6-4-1 3-8-0
St. Thomas 21 7 12 2 16 .381 65 72 349 5-4-1 2-8-1
Lambton Shores 21 6 12 3 15 .357 60 93 541 5-4-1 1-8-2
St. Marys 22 2 18 2 6 .136 38 107 457 2-8-1 0-10-1

 

 

Coming up this weekend

Friday, November 21

St. Thomas Stars vs. London Nationals – 7:30 Timken Centre

St. Marys Lincolns vs. Leamington Flyers – 7:30 Pyramid Rec Centre

Saturday, November 22

Strathroy Rockets vs. Lambton Shores Predators – 7:30 West Middlesex Memorial

Sunday, November 23

Leamington Flyers vs. Sarnia Legionnaires – 4:10 Heinz Arena

Chatham Maroons vs. London Nationals – 7:00 Chatham Memorial

Lambton Shores Predators vs. LaSalle Vipers – 7:30 Shores Rec Centre

 

This is a busy weekend in the West with 6 games and all 9 teams playing.  Watch the weather, I hear it’s supposed to get warmer by Sun., but try to make it to a game to watch some fantastic GOJHL hockey.

You all know that I am a die-hard Rockets fan, but I am also a die-hard GOJHL fan, having been watching Jr. B hockey since I was 10 years old. I will only watch the GOJHL and during the hockey season, you never know what arena RG is gonna show up at.

I’m bringing you the games, news, and updates of the GOJHL.

RG is on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheRocketGirl16 and you can find me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/TheRocketGirl16

If you hear of anything about any of the teams in the GOJHL, or have questions about anything, feel free to post it. If I don’t know the answer, I know how to find it.

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