Feb 17, 2015, 7:15 am
The Atom A Hornets played game three of the OMHA Quarter Finals last night in Cannington against the fiery Brock Wild team. The Hornets were already up two games in this best 3 out of 5 contest. The Hornets easily won the first match, but the Wild game back strong in game two to make it a very close competition. The Hornets were expecting a big game from the Wild in Game three.
The first period was a nail bitter for both teams, there were a number of opportunities at both ends of the rink, but both the Hornets Goalie Devon Creasy and the Wild Goalie Jack Gratrix had a strong first period and held the score at 0 – 0. You could feel the intensity in the rink growing as both teams were feeling desperate for a goal at the start of the second. The Hornets capitalized first with a short handed goal scored by Tommy Pollock with an assist from Marshall Flynn. The Wild team responded two minutes later with their first goal of the game. The Hornets call up Evan Smockum scored his first of the play offs with 6 minutes left in the second period. Assisting Evan on this goal were Centreman Jacob Shepstone and Winger Colby Hanbidge. But this lead didn’t last long as the Brock Wild answered back with two goals near the end of the second period putting them ahead 3-2. The Hornets went into the flood break down by one goal and feeling the pressure in the dressing room. Coach McMillan reminded the team of what got them to this point in the play downs and encouraged the Hornets to go back out on the ice in the third period ready to play the way they know how. This advice seemed to work as the Hornets came back to the ice looking ready for the third.
8 minutes went by in the third period, and the Brock Wild remained ahead by one goal. The Hornets had two goals called back by the referees and the Hornets were starting to feel frustrated, but with just seven minutes remaining in the game, Tommy Pollock scored his second of the game as he went “top shelf” on the Wild goalie. This goal to tie up the game at 3 – 3 was assisted by line mates Shane Archer and Marshall Flynn. With the score tied up, the Hornets seemed to get a renewed sense of energy and were winning all the puck the battles to keep the Wild out of the Hornets end. Hardworking Left Winger Colby Hanbidge had been kept off the score board up until the last 3 minutes when he caught the Wild Defense off guard and got a few steps ahead of them to score a breakaway goal with just three minutes left in the game. With the Wild trying to fend off elimination, and the Hornets looking to move on the last 3 minutes in the game seemed to last an eternity. The Hornets played with the most intensity seen all game to keep the puck in the offensive end for much of the remaining 3 minutes and the Wild just couldn’t get a chance to get close to the Norwood goal. Even with an empty net and the extra attacker for the Wild, the Hornets dominated the play to win this close game with a score of 4 – 3.
Coach McMillan praised the solid performance by the Hornets big and strong defensemen Daniel Begg, Mitchell Crowley, Sam Rogers and Henry Walsh for keeping the Wild away from the Hornets net. He also couldn’t say enough about the hard work and amazing back checking of the two forward lines of Tommy Pollock, Marshall Flynn, Shane Archer, Jacob Shepstone, Nathan Honey, Colby Hanbidge and Evan Smockum. And the Hornets goalie Devon Creasy really kept the Hornets in each game in this round of the OMHA Quarter Finals.
The Atom A Hornets now move on to the Semi Finals and will meet up a team from Shallow Lake (Owen Sound area). Dates and times to be confirmed. Keep on cheering for your Archer Bulk Carriers Atom A Hornets!