Blades Drop Game Five
SUBMITTED BY THE BLENHEIM BLADES
LAKESHORE – History has long had a ‘history’ of repeating itself, and the Blenheim Blades are hoping that that is not the case this week.
In the then Great Lakes Junior ‘C’ Hockey League semi-finals in 2014 the Blades won the first two games of the best-of-seven series with the then Belle River Canadiens only to see the Canadiens come back and eliminate the Blades with four straight victories.
This season’s best-of-seven Provincial Junior Hockey League Stobbs Division semi-final between the Blades and the now Lakeshore Canadiens saw the Blades jump out to a 2-0 series lead only to have the Canadiens road back and win Games 3, 4 and Tuesday night Game 5 8-4 in Lakeshore.
It will now be up to the Blades, who have been decimated with injures and the flu bug, to come tough Thursday night in Game 6 in Blenheim and force a Game 7 Friday back in Lakeshore. The games are scheduled for 7 p.m.
With several players already out of the lineup for Tuesday’s game, the Blades found out late in the day Tuesday that captain Brayden Hopkins would not be available because of the flu.
The certainly made Blenheim’s task in Lakeshore tougher than it might have been, and the Canadiens took full advantage of the situation outscoring the Blades 3-1 in the first period, and 4-1 in the second, enroute to taking their three-games-to-two series lead.
The Blades, with four call ups in the lineup, had a strong third period outshooting Lakeshore 11-7 and scoring two powerplay goals. On the night Blenheim was three-for-six on the powerplay while Lakeshore was one-for-four.
Neither starting goalie finished the game with Blenheim’s Eric Stewardson being replaced by Adam Craven after 33 minutes and six goals scored, and Lakeshore’s Mitch Topliffe playing the first two periods before giving way to Colin Tetreault. Both goalies allowed two goals.
Connor Rosaasen led the goal scoring parade for Lakeshore with a pair, while singles went to James Brooks, Guy Levesque, Mejoe Gasparovic, Ameen Fadell, J.J. Percy and Joe Binder.
The Blades got a first period goal from Austin Bentley, a second period powerplay goal from Dustin Maines, and third period powerplay tallies by Maines and Drew Marlatt.
The goals by Maines were his fourth and fifth of the playoffs. The Tweed native now has 14 points in 11 playoff games.
Bentley’s score was his fifth to go with five assists, while the goal by Marlatt was his fourth.
Bentley also had two assists, with singles going to Derek Hueni, Owen Bateman, John Montgomery, Maines, Nick Delyzer and Matt Clark.
BLADES BITS: Besides Hopkins the Blades were once again missing defencemen Keegan MacVoy, Patrick Wright and forward Zach Horvath because of injuries and defenceman Brayden Seliga, who was sitting out the second of a four-game very costly suspension…In the last four periods played in the series the Blades have had a goal scored against them in three of the four with less than a minute to play, including the game winner in Lakeshore’s 3-1 victory in Game 4 Sunday in Blenheim…The Canadiens also scored in the last minute of the first and third periods Tuesday…The Blades had affiliate players defenceman Drew Vandehogen of Blenheim, and forwards Seth Henderson of Chatham, Christian Moccia of Chatham and Nick Tetreault of Tilbury in the lineup…Attendance was 966.