Icehawks Sweep Illinois With 4-2 Saturday Win
November 15, 2009
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By: John Keuvelaar
Saturday night, the Icehawks used a combination of strong skating and constant offensive pressure to come away with a 4-2 win over the Illinois Frontenacs. The win, coupled with Friday nights come from behind victory, moved the Icehawks into fourth place in the Great Lakes Junior Hockey League. The win also sends them off on a 17 game road schedule that won't see the Icehawks return to the Bay City Ice Arena until January 29, 2010.
The Icehawks came out on fire putting great pressure on Robert Schultz, the Frontenacs' goaltender. The effort earned back to back power plays keeping the pressure on Illinois . But it was the Frontenacs who got the first big break. While killing the penalty, Frontenacs Cody Robinson cleared the puck sending it just wide of the net. Goaltender Dominic Orlando came out to play the puck when the puck hit an ice chip deflecting it into the open net for an early Illinois lead, 1-0.
The young goaltender quickly redeemed himself as Illinois soon was on their own power play. Orlando came up big on several shots killing off the penalty and keeping Illinois from gaining any momentum. Soon, Tyler Kennedy hit Alex Truran on the right side with a pass. Truran spotted James Odom on the left and hit him with a crisp pass. Odom caught the goaltender moving right with a shot just inside the far post to tie the game at the end of the first period.
It was a fast paced up and down period with both teams finishing their checks in the corners.
26 Anderson reclaims the pucks near goalie Robert Schultz. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Eric Tien bears down on Illinois' Schultz. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
This Icehawk fires from the outside. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Parents and fans watch with suspense as the game continues to unfold. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Benjamin Kitts charges to the net as Robert Schultz attempts to block the goal attempt. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
The Icehawks exploded out of the locker room lead by the tenacious skating of Warren Carter and Matt Dufort. The pressure set the tone for the Icehawks as Ben Kitts found Tyler Kennedy for a sharp wrist shot to put the Hawks up 2-1 just after a minute and a half into the second period.
The pressure continued with the Icehawks going on the power play and bombarding Schultz with multiple shots. But the former Icehawks goaltender was up to the task holding off the barrage of power play shots to keep his team in the game. The Frontenacs repaid the favor in sustaining nearly a minute of offensive pressure on the Icehawks goalie who himself stood strong in the nets.
Half way through the second period, the Icehawks' leading goal scorer, Mitchell Wood found the back of the net with help from Joe Lampman and James Odom to put the Icehawks on top 3-1.
Schultz kept the Frontenacs in the game when he stopped a nice give and go between from the Icehawks Jeff Taunton to Warren Carter with just over three minutes to play.
James Odom hustles to stay on Bradley Anderson's tail as they rocket behind the goal net. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Players struggle at the net for control of the puck. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Warren Carter battles for the puck at the boards. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Warren Carter attacks the net. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Benjamin Kitts fights to keep punk in possession while being swarmed by a group of Frontenacs at the goal. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Hooter Girls Kyiana and Olivia sell raffle tickets to fans at the game. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
The third period started physical. With Carter and Truran creating scoring pressure in front of the net, a scrum started behind the net sending players from both teams into the penalty box. The Icehawks added to their lead when Ben Kitts hit Eric Tien with a nice cross ice pass pulling the goalie across with it. Tien then fired a top shelf shot over the goalie's left shoulder for a 4-1 lead.
The action got even faster and more furious as Illinois tried to climb back into the game. But the Icehawks had no intention of backing off as the play went up and down the ice with frequent skirmishes in front of the nets. Illinois finally scored when Cory Martin fed Matt Jenkins in the slot for a score making it 4-2 Icehawks.
While neither team was able to score the rest of the way, the play remained aggressive. The intensity finally boiled over as Illinois' Corey Martin and Harold Patterson dropped gloves and battled.
In the end, Tri City unleashed 66 shots at their former netminder with Schultz stopping 62 earning him third star honors. Illinois responded with 38 shots of their own for a game total of 100 shots.
After the game, a pleased owner in Art Dore Jr. noted: "With this win, we have moved up into fourth place. Next week we go to Wisconsin to avenge our early season loses to them." Wisconsin took two out of three games from Tri City at Bay City to start the season. This will be the first meeting between the two teams since then.
"This will be the last game in Bay City until January 29, 2010," said Art Dore, Jr. Next o the schedule is the Mountain Cats. "This is just the way the scheduling occurred, Dore went on. "We have two home games on December 20 and 21 but this will be at the Showcase being held at Ice Mountain in Burton. The Showcase allows all the teams to play games in one location so scouts from colleges and the upper leagues can come and see the boys play," Dore said.
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Tempers flare throughout the game with rough shoves and aggressive attacks. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
A fight erupts between Corey Martin and Harold Patterson with fists flying. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
The puck gets loose causing everyone to scramble to get claim of the punk near the Icehawks net. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Robert Schultz makes 1 of his 62 saves on the night. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
John Keuvelaar is a college student at Midwest Photography Workshops and Delta College.
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