It was a hot one at Kinsmen last night – not so much the calibre of play, just the temperature. First game started slow with neither team being able to get things going early. Team Blair, with a full bench, finally got their line matchups sorted and scored a few to build up a 3 goal lead before Team Juniors were able to respond with 1. Lots of Team Junior chances, only 1 goal… sigh…not a good omen….again!. A last second Team Blair goal ended the period with Team Blair in the lead 4 – 1. 8 goals, 4 per side, followed in the 2nd but definitely in streaks. Team Blair scored a couple early to up their lead to 5 and looking to cruise to an easy victory but Team Juniors were having none of this, scoring 4 in a row to close to within 1. Then the tides shifted again and Team Blair score a couple more, again with a very late goal to end the 2nd still leading by 3, Team Blair 8 – Team Juniors 5. As Trevor mentioned at the break – definitely a game of momentum – OK if the momentum has switched to your team! Already the requests for good PR spin were surfacing – “You will write up that we made it close? Right? We are getting a lot of chances! Right? And then the momentum changed….AGAIN! 3rd period was all Team Juniors – after allowing an early Team Blair tally, Team Juniors scored, and scored again and again and again (I like the sound of that!), pulling close and then knotting it up with a minute or so to play. A close, crease call with 10 sec left on a Jeff Williamson non-goal turns the ball over to the Juniors who move it quickly up the floor, pressing hard, the clock running out, Ashmore takes a desperate shot for the last second winning goal….and you can hear the sound of ball on plastic(or aluminum). Did it hit a stick head or shaft?…or a helmet or pad? 1.8 sec left….tied at 9…. dangerous shot penalty shot or let the time run out? Earnshaw, from the far end of the floor just shrugs, he didn’t see it…. but Kutch says the ball hit a stick – no penalty shot….but the ball is turned over to Team Blair anyway! A Hail Mary pass…dropped, no last sec goal to win the game. Game over, Team Blair 9 – Team Juniors 9. Fast, fun game, lots of players on both benches. Looks like Ian Gordon led Team Blair with 5 goals while Dave Bumstead led a more diverse Team Junior attack with 3 tallies.
In the 2nd game Team Bill was up against a very short benched Team Russ – only 1 spare, hot arena…this will not be pretty. Team Bill got a small lead early, up 2-1, but then Team Russ started to score and kept right on scoring. Led by perennial scoring threat Dylan English with 4 and adding Devon Reed’s 4 goals (blazing speed and an…interesting shooting style seemed to allow every breakaway chance to result in a goal). Team Russ led 5-3 at the end of 1, 8-5 at the end of 2 and 12-6 at the final buzzer. Not the first time this year that a short bench has come out on the winning side of the ledger. In the post game interview, Team Bill’s high priced free agent acquisition, Brent Yost blamed himself for not scoring more (only 2 tonight) as a result of choosing the wrong stick. He promised to do better next week. General consensus was that he should have fired his caddy mid game and asked one of the 2 female fans watching the game to help out on the bench with stick and shot selection – probably wouldn’t have helped but would have made for a much more visually interesting game.
On to the penultimate week of the regular season Wednesday August 5, 2015 Kinsmen Arena
Team Blair vs. Team Russ 8:00pm – 9:00pm
Team Juniors vs. Team Bill 9:00pm – 10:00pm