Flyers Romp and Roll To Oust Lincolns – by C. Scott Holland

The Leamington Flyers wasted little time in asserting a lead as they sought a sweep of the St. Marys Lincolns in their first round series.

By the 10 minute mark of the first the Flyers had grabbed a 3-0 lead and never looked back. By the time the contest concluded Leamington had rolled to an 11-2 victory and a 4-0 series sweep of the Lincolns.

The Lincolns found themselves down 11-0 before they even scored a goal to break Flyers starter Michael Barrett’s shutout bid. -Leamington’s scoring prowess was such that they set a new team record for most goals in a playoff contest with the 11 tallies and had eight different players tab goals along the way.

It was a rout after one frame as the Flyers surged to a 6-0 lead. Lincolns’ netminder Emanuel Vella was lifted after one period and Paul Town took over for the remainder of the contest but found he couldn’t halt any more shots than Vella.

Scott Emerson ignited the Flyers’ fireworks at 5:36 when he deposited Aaron Langlois feed. Derek Elliott triggered the second tally at 6:15 and on the heels of that Mitch Amante ripped a shorthanded marker after Joe Urbaic and Zak Parlette had laid the groundwork. Late in the frame the Flyers decided to erase a few team records. Elliott notched a goal at 17:13 and 16 seconds later (17:29) Liam Hogan planted the fifth Flyers’ tally. The players hit the record book when Cale Phibbs unassisted drive at 18:24 made it the fastest three Flyers playoff goals ever scored – 1:11 apart.

With Paul Town starting the netminding duties for the Lincs in the second, the Flyers scoring binge continued.

Emerson converted the handiwork of Matthew Opblinger and Aaron Langlois just 33 seconds into the middle stanza. Zach Guilbeault got into the act at 1:29 when he crushed the Flyers’ eighth. Mark Manchurek scored Leamington’s second shorthanded goal of the game at 6:24 and Aaron Langlois registered a solo effort at 18:47 for a 10-0 lead.

Manchurek gave the Flyers one last goal at 3:42 and that 11th salvo was enough to better the previous Flyers’ high mark of 10 goals in any playoff contest. The Flyers coasted from that juncture until the final buzzer sounded.

However the Lincolns did manage to break Michael Barrett’s shutout bid. Graham Brulotte and Trent Dundas hooked up with Josh Zlatinsky who fired the first puck past Barrett at 4:02. Dundas would rip a Ryan Martin feed at 9:42 for the Lincs final goal.

Kudos to the young Lincolns for playing as hard as they possibly could against a tough opponent. The Lincs future looks bright if they can retain many of the same players next season.

Despite winning their series 4-0, the Flyers’ second round opponent remains unknown since fourth seed Chatham leads St. Thomas 3-1 and sixth seed Sarnia went up 3-2 on the LaSalle Vipers via a 4-3 OT victory Wed. night. Second seed London Nationals eliminated the Strathroy Rockets 4-1 on Wed. night as well.

The Flyers will advance to the semi-finals and play the lowest seeded team that advances out of the first round.  A Sarnia upset over LaSalle, for example, would set up a Legionnaire-Flyers pairing in the second round.

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