Weekend hockey roundup: IceDogs win; Junior B results
The Niagara IceDogs are on fire.
The IceDogs concluded three games in three nights with a convincing 3-0 win over the Ottawa 67’s Saturday in Ottawa.
The IceDogs have won three straight and seven of their last eight games to improve to 16-9-3-2 in Ontario Hockey League action.
IceDogs coach Billy Burke couldn’t say enough about how the team has come together of late.
“The guys are buying in and things are just evolving on their own without us even having to talk about it,” Burke said. “When the guys can take ownership of their team, that’s a great sign and we’re starting to see that.
“We have a little bit of an attitude that we’re coming to win every night, it doesn’t matter who we’re playing. If we’re down we’ll come back and if we’re up we don’t panic.”
During the past few weeks, the IceDogs have been playing with more intensity and have upped their physical play.
“There was a stretch there when things weren’t going well that we were playing soft. It’s not that the guys are soft, but we were playing soft,” Burke said. “It’s been a big focus every since then for us to be much harder to play against. You don’t have to crush guys, but bump them and be a little ratty at times. Be physical.”
The additional of overage winger Adrian Carbonara has helped, although he has missed the last eight games with a suspension. Carbonara returned Saturday and had a strong effort.
“It’s not that we condone fighting or the scrums, but if someone takes a run at one of our guys, the other guys are getting in there,” Burke added.
The IceDogs, coming off wins Thursday at home versus Erie and Friday in Kingston, got off to a quick start Saturday with a pair of goals in the first period by Matthew Philip and Danial Singer.
Following a scoreless second period, Elijah Roberts iced the game away with an empty net goal with just over two minutes remaining in the third period.
Stephen Dhillon had another strong outing turning back 29 shots for his first shutout of the season. He was particularly strong in the third kicking out 12 shots.
Burke was proud of the energy shown by his club.
“There were times we weren’t as fast as we could have been but there were some guys who played some big minutes three days in a row. I’m sure there was (some fatigue) but the guys didn’t show it. We tried to keep our shifts short to keep guys fresh.”
The IceDogs are off Sunday and will enjoy their team Christmas party Monday. They are home to North Bay Friday and Barrie Saturday before taking some time off for the Christmas break.
Avalanche 4 Falcons 1
The St. Catharines Falcons lost only their sixth game of the season in regulation as they dropped a 4-1 decision at Ancaster Saturday.
“We struggled to sustain pressure in the offensive zone and didn’t get to the dirty areas for second and third chances as often as we should have,” Falcons coach Dan Fitzgerald said.
The Avs took a 2-0 lead after one on goals by Dirk Stadig and Liam Van Loon.
The Falcons got on the board in the second when former Avalanche Zach Lawrence scored.
Ancaster then put the game away with goals by Nicholas Breault and Benjamin Hatanaka in the third.
Ancaster outshot St. Catharines 39-27.
The Falcons, 21-6-1-2, are in Caledonia Wednesday and home to Thorold Friday.
Hawks 4 Regals 0
The Thorold Blackhawks got goals from four players at Buffalo Saturday.
Brendan Charlton, Griffen Fox, Devon Thibodeau and Jacob Mastrangelo scored for the Hawks.
Anthony Tremonte made 40 saves for the shutout.
The Hawks fired 72 shots at Buffalo netminder Peyton Zern.
Canucks 3 Meteors 0
Zach Moore turned aside 17 shots for the shutout as the Niagara Falls Canucks blanked the Fort Erie Meteors at the Leisureplex.
Matt Baumann, Michael Arch and Noah Bowman scored.
Corvairs 8 Panthers 2
The Caledonia Corviars raced out to a 3-0 lead in the first period en route to a win over the visiting Pelham Panthers.
Adam Craievich and Bailey Fletcher had two each for the winners while Sean O’Brien, T.J. Hughes, Bobby Harrison and Jamey Lauzon added singles.
Peter Izzo and Noah Caperchione replied for Pelham.
Panthers 7 Hawks 6 OT
The Thorold Blackhawks blew a 5-1 lead as they dropped a 7-6 decision at Pelham Sunday afternoon.
Chris Webber’s power-play goal, his third of the game, 31 seconds into overtime capped the comeback.
Noah Caperchione, Kurt Villani, Matt Ruigrok and Thomas Young also scored for the Panthers.
Daniel Lowe had three for the Hawks while Brendan Charlton had two and Blair Jenkins one.
The Blackhawks are home to Fort Erie Thursday and in St. Catharines Friday.
The Buffalo at Welland game was postponed due to inclement weather in Buffalo.