Whether based on goalie performance in the Bronze game, or success from last week or just a random flip of the coin, Ashmore decided again that Team Juniors wanted to start with Justin in net, so the long awaited 2014 Gold Medal game was ready for the opening faceoff. Goalie choice appeared to be prescient as Team Juniors scored 4 goals quickly and seemed in complete control. Team Russ finally got to Justin and then a stray shot caught him on the chin opening up what appeared to be a fairly significant cut. After a few attempts to staunch the bleeding, Justin soldiered on keeping Team Russ at bay and only letting in 1 more goal to the half. Team Juniors kept upping the score and, in another strange strategic move, shook up Guntis with a couple of shots to the helmet just before the switch – always good to ring your goalie’s bell just before he has to play the rest of the game for you! At the switch it was Team Juniors 7 – Team Russ 2 – again would the 5 goal lead be enough? Second half was pretty good lacrosse, tight defense and close checking – hard times for the goalies as there were a couple of more shots to the masks at each end – Team Russ was able to score 6 but it was just not enough as Team Juniors were able to get 3 past Justin and run out the clock to the cheering of the crowd (surprising number of spectators!, at least 10 that I could count, maybe we should sell tickets). Final score Team Juniors 10 – Team Russ 8. Team Juniors are the winners of the 2014 LMHLL MemorialBraggingRightsUsedBallOfTape Trophy.
Once the obligatory handshakes and on floor celebrations were complete, most of the players and fans retired to the Alibi Roadhouse where the Gold and Bronze awards were presented and playoff and season long exploits were retold again and again and mocked in a suitably appropriate manner.
…..and now the countdown begins …..34 weeks to go until LMHLL 2015 begins – will salary cap space restrictions break up Team Juniors, who will retire, which team will be able to bring in any rookies or unrestricted free agents? Will the long rumoured expansion take place and how may $ will a new franchise be worth? We’ll just have to wait for 2015 to find out.