Kings Even Series In Thriller
The Dresden Jr Kings and Blenheim Blades got to know one another a little better in game two of their all-Chatham-Kent opening round playoff series.
In an energetic affair, Dresden used home ice advantage to their benefit and evened the series at one game a piece with a 4-3 win that wasn’t decided until the final second.
Coming off a 2-0 shutout in game one, Blenheim’s Klinton Kenney was equal to the task in game two, stopping 31 of 35 shots, including more than a handful of high quality scoring opportunities.
“Kenney certainly kept the Blades in this one, particularly early on,” said Peter Cobb of 99.1 CKXS and host of C-K Sports Talk. “He allowed them a chance to stay within striking distance and have a chance to pick up the W.”
Dresden’s Derek Shaw opened the scoring just 2:34 into the first period. The Kings followed up with several near-strikes through the first half of the opening frame. Blenheim responded with a power play goal from Drew Marlatt with just over five minutes remaining in the first.
Dillon Liberty had a strong outing, using his big frame, cutting wide and creating scoring chances throughout the game. Liberty was rewarded with a goal that appeared to find the stick of Derrick VanEvery on a deflection of a floating knuckle-puck from Brady Hogg 4:56 into the second. The power-play continued to click for the Blades, with Nick Delyzer scoring with the extra man just two and a half minutes later. The Blades would finish two-for-four on the power play.
Entering the third period deadlocked at two, Dresden found their second wind and their first two-goal lead of the game (and series). The line combination of Macks Holmes, Taylor Sisson and Will Tetzlaf created several Jr King chances throughout game two, and cashed in on a Tetzlaf goal at 5:39 of the third, followed by Isaac McLean’s first of the playoffs a minute and a half later. Rookie of the year Kyle Dawson played the puck from the corner with 6’5″ Bryan Boersma all over him and found McLean in front of goaltender Kenney for the eventual game-winning goal. Drew Marlatt’s second goal of the game came with the goalie pulled and an exrtra attacker at 18:33 and made things interesting for the final moments.
After the horn sounded to tie the series, several fans found themselves among Blades team members off of the ice surface in a heated few moments before referees and cleared heads prevailed. No repercussions have been announced at this time.
Fans won’t have to wait to see if the intensity picks up in Game 3 – Saturday (Feb 6) in Blenheim. Puck drop is 7:30.
Blenheim stand-outs: Drew Marlatt (2G), Matt Clark (2A), Brayden Hopkins (1A), Zack Horvath (2A), Bryce Broad, Klinton Kenney
Dresden stand-outs: Isaac McLean (1G, 1A), Brady Hogg (2A), Kyle Dawson (2A), Derek Shaw (1G), Dillon Liberty (1A), Steven Funk, Logan Purbrick