By Darryl G. Smart
Luke in hunt for PJHL scoring title
On the final weekend of the Provincial Junior Hockey League’s regular season, there are a number of interesting races.
While most eyes are on the number of tight races in the standings, there is another one heating up in the scoring race. Simcoe’s Jake Luke is one goal behind Ryley Cribbin in the race for most goals in the PJHL.
Currently Luke, who is leading the Norwich Jr C Merchants, has 37 goals, while Cribbin has 38 for the Pollock Division leading Mount Forest Patriots JR C Hockey Club. He is also in the PJHL points lead with 82.
On Saturday, Luke continued to tear it up against PJHL Doherty Division opponents. He scored two goals and two assists in the Merchants 11-1 win on the road against the Delhi Travellers Jr. C.
Mason Cooper also had two goals and two assists, while Jamie Damignani also added a pair of goals. Seth Lamoure, Cole Feeney, Simon Storoschuk, Parker Noble, and Ethan Froats netted one each.
Brayden Verschveren scored the lone Travellers goal.
Sunday at home, Benjamin Cripps scored the lone Merchants marker in a 3-1 loss to the Doherty Division leading Tavistock Braves.
Mitch McKay led the way with two goals, while Tanner Johnson added one.
Braves goalie Carter Roth also had a big night, making 33 saves to preserve the win, while Zach Johnston made 18 stops for the Merchants.
The 19-17-2 Merchants are in sixth place in the Doherty Division, knotted at 40 points with the New Hamburg Firebirds. Both teams are three points behind the Paris Mounties.
The Merchants close out the regular season with games Thursday and Friday against Ayr Centennials at 7:30pm, on the road, and at home against the Burford Bulldogs at 8pm respectively.
Bulldogs notch a win
Nate DaSilva scored twice to help the Burford Bulldogs Junior Hockey Club get into the win column, thanks to a 6-3 victory over the Delhi Travellers in Provincial Junior Hockey League Doherty Division action.
Eric Semiwolos, Jacob Kelly, Jack Hagan, and Devin Boomer all added one goal each.
The Travellers responded with Tyler Martin, Braydon Verschveren, and Quinn VanBoekel.
On Friday, the Buldogs were brought back down to reality, thanks to an 8-0 loss to the Tavistock Braves.
Brock Phillips led the way with two goals, while Tanner Johnson, Samson Walsom, Zach Gladding, Bradley Smith, Drew Gerth, and Patrick Vulgan all added one goal.
Jensen VanBoekel had 14 stops for the shutout, while Caleb Ursu made 50 saves in a losing effort.
With two games remaining in the regular season, the Bulldogs are 5-31-1-1, and clinch the eighth and final spot in the playoffs. They wrap up the regular season against the Norwich Merchants, on the road at 8pm Friday, and at home Saturday at 7:30pm against the Woodstock Navy Vets.
Mounties look to go into postseason on high note
With two games remaining in their Provincial Junior Hockey League Doherty Division schedule, the Paris Mounties want to build some momentum.
On Saturday at home, the Mounties were blanked 4-0 by the New Hamburg Firebirds.
Josh Vale, Aiden Matekovic, Adam Barr, and Ryan George all scored goals, while Griffin Murphy made 33 stops for the shutout.
Justin Hergott also had 33 shots his way.
The 20-15-2-1 Mounties are in fifth place, three points ahead of the Norwich Merchants and Firebirds.
Friday they are in New Hamburg Firebirds at 7:30pm, before wrapping things up at home Saturday at 7:20pm against the Ayr Centennials.
Travellers season almost over
It’s an understatement to say this has been a tough season for the Delhi Travellers Jr. C.
After losing 11-1 to the Norwich Merchants Saturday, the Provincial Junior Hockey League Doherty Division cellar dwellers lost 20-1 to the Wellesley Applejacks on Sunday at home.
Justin McCombs led the way with four goals and Koby Seilling had three. Kyle Fischer, Shaun Pickering, Steven DeGroot, Troy Vandenbusche, Zach Ribeiro, and Gianfranco Commisso all netted two goals, while James Ranson had one.
Mercifully the Travellers season will come to an end Saturday at home, when they host the division leading Tavistock Braves at 8pm.
Hawks ready for a playoff run
The Hagersville Hawks Jr C Hockey are certainly preparing themselves for a long run in the Provincial Junior Hockey League playoffs.
Thanks to Tycie Cowan’s goal less than a minute into overtime lifted the Hawks to a 2-1 win over the Glanbrook Rangers in a potential PJHL Bloomfield Division playoff preview down the road.
After Noah Matteson opened the scoring for the Rangers in the first period, Connor Stirling tied things up early in the third period, setting up Cowan’s OT winner.
The win gives the Hawks a 27-8-3-2 record. Their 59 points is one behind the second-place Rangers, and two behind the first-place Grimsby Peach Kings.
The Hawks will close the regular season out with two games this weekend. Friday, they are on the road against the Dunnville Mudcats, before taking on the Peach Kings at home Saturday. Both games are at 7:30pm.
Sailors grab some momentum
Port Dover Sailors head coach Mike Tobin has been looking for some kind of momentum, as he and his Provincial Junior Hockey League team heads into the Bloomfield Division playoffs.
And at home Sunday, they got that.
The Sailors scored twice in the second period and two more times in the third en route to a 5-4 victory over the Dundas Blues.
Brent Mio, Isaac MacAulay, Hayden Butler, George Kapralos, and Tyler Heisey scored for the Sailors.
The Blues responded with goals from Connor Noonan, Scott McLaren, Daniel Moro, and Adam Kozlowski.
Now with a 11-26-2-1 record, the Sailors are two points up on the Dunnville Mudcats for eighth in the Bloomfield Division.
The Sailors close out the regular season with two home games this weekend. Staurday at 7pm they host the Niagara RiverHawks Jr. Hockey Club, before playing host to the Hespeler Jr C Shamrocks Sunday at 2pm.
Mudcats drop two
The Dunnville Jr. Mudcats have a tendency to play in a lot of close games.
Friday on the road, the Mudcats dropped a 3-2 decision to the Provincial Junior Hockey League’s Bloomfield Division leading Grimsby Peach Kings.
Despite being outshot 38-18, the Mudcats were in the game thanks to goalie Austin Davison. Offensively, the Mudcats got goals from Riley Ricker and James Bradshaw.
Jacob Baronowski led the Peach Kings with two goals in the first period, before Jacob Balca netted the winner, on the powerplay, with five minutes left to play in regulation.
Sunday, in Hespeler, the Shamrocks scored three times in the second period en route to a 4-2 win over the Mudcats.
Ricker and Jacob Murdoch scored for the Mudcats.
Devin Schneider, Kyle Wagner, Matthew Diebolt, and Nick Donelle scored for the Shamrocks.
With its 10-27-1-2 record, the Mudcats trail the seventh-place Port Dover Sailors by two points.
To end the regular season, the Mudcats are on the road Thursday against the Niagara RiverHawks, before hosting the Hagersville Hawks Friday. Both games are at 7:30pm.