Falcons frustrated in OT
The St. Catharines Falcons found little solace in picking up a point Friday night versus the Ancaster Avalanche.
The Falcons dropped a 3-2 overtime decision in a Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League, Golden Horseshoe Conference game at Jack Gatecliff Arena, but were left wondering what might have been after the Avs scored the winner in controversial manner late in the first extra period.
Video relays appear to show Ancaster’s Benjamin Woodhouse directing the puck into the net with a distinct kicking motion.
Falcons goalie Owen Savory immediately jumped up after the goal to confront officials, who had a brief meeting at centre before signalling the game over.
Falcons coach Dan Fitzgerald also showed his displeasure and attempted to get an explanation from the officials.
“The call is the call. We can’t do anything about it now,” Fitzgerald said. “We got a point out of this but it’s certainly not what we wanted.
“They got one that was suspect. It is what it is. It’s the ebbs and flows of the season.”
Having said that, Fitzgerald liked much of what he saw.
“There are a lot of things we can build off of that effort. “I really thought we dug in through adversity in the second half of the third and into overtime,” he said.
One area where the Falcons looked better was in the grit department.
“That’s something we’re really trying to focus on,” Fitzgerald said. “We’re trying to simplify the game, bring our effort level up, and play with a little more sandpaper and I think that is going to translate into sustainable hockey for us.
“We can play that way and win games but sometimes it just doesn’t go your way.”
The Falcons still appear to be searching for more cohesiveness, particularly up front.
“It’s about chemistry,” Fitzgerald said. “It’s been a little bit of juggling but it’s up to these guys to find cohesiveness as fast as they can. We want some better chemistry with those guys, but we’re going to find it. When we have everybody healthy and everybody going, it’s going to be alright.”
The Falcons still have a solid enough record to 10-3-0-2, but have just two wins in their last five games.
“We got off to a hot start and the expectations were high, as they should be,” Fitzgerald said. “We want them to be high and we want that pressure. At the end of the day, these things make you a better hockey club.
“We’re not quitting on these kids and I know they’re not going to quit on us. We’ll battle through this together.”
The Falcons scored the lone goal of the opening period as Carson Eden netted his third of the season when he finished off a perfect three-way passing play with Evan Miller and Noah Perlic. The Falcons held a 14-11 edge in shots.
The Avs tied the game early in the second and then took their first lead of the night with a power-play goal near the end of the second. Ancaster outshot the Falcons 11-9.
St. Catharines to the power play for four minutes seven minutes in and tied the game when Lucas Smilsky netted his eighth of the season.
Falcon facts: Dakota Miskolczi and Tanner Main did not dress for the Falcons. Forward Gianluca Fuoco, who began the season as property of the Erie Otters of the OHL before joining the Falcons, has left the team. The forward had one goal in four games . . . Bryce Robertson and Jesse Hilton were scratched for the Avalanche.
Corvairs 5 Canucks 2
Five players scored as the visiting Caledonia Corvairs topped the Niagara Falls Canucks at the Gale Centre.
Matt Weston, Jesse Barwell, Jamey Louzon, Mark Bzowey and Joshua DeFarias scored for the winners.
Patrick McCabe and Jacob Stos scored for the Falls.
Panthers 6 Junior Canadians 5
Thomas Young scored the winner in the third as the Pelham Panthers edged the visiting Welland Junior Canadians Friday at the Pelham Arena.
Brendan Bouvier had a pair for the Panthers while Matt Ruigrok, Jared Hill and Francesco Gigliotti added singles.
Tanner McEachern had two for Welland. Liam Anderson, Nathan Ellis and Matthew Giannini also scored.
BPSN Star of the Game: Avs forward Benjamin Woodhouse with a pair of goals.
For the St. Catharines Falcons: Lucas Smilsky (8); Carson Eden (3).
For the Ancaster Avalanche: Woodhouse 2 (6,7); Jeff Lindsay (4).
Shots on goal: By St. Catharines on Ryan Dugas (37), by Ancaster on Owen Savory (39); Power plays: St. Catharines 1-for-10, Ancaster 1-for-10; Penalty minutes: St. Catharines 32, Ancaster 22.
Up next: At Pelham Sunday at 3 p.m.