By Darryl G. Smart
Despite a delayed start to the season, the Provincial Junior Hockey League will host its annual Prospect Games, but with a twist that will include Norwich.
For the last several seasons New Hamburg has been the location for the annual event. But because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic among other factors, the PJHL will host two Prospect Games in Orillia and Norwich.
“The Prospect Games are important because it helps our league showcase the top 16- and 17-year-old players in our league,” PJHL commissioner Terry Whiteside said. “These players are looking for opportunities to move to the next level of hockey and the PJHL wants to help facilitate that development for this part of our league. We will be inviting scouts from the Jr. B and Jr. A leagues to attend these games and look for their next player. We will also be utilizing our new ‘The PJ’ logo on the jerseys so watch for them.”
On December 11 at 1 pm, the North and East conferences will play in Orillia. And on December 18, the West and South will showcase their top 20 players from each conference in Norwich at 1 pm.
“A big thank you from the PJHL to Orillia and Norwich for putting this together on short notice,” Whiteside said.
Sailors streak snapped
The Glanbrook Rangers snapped the Port Dover Sailors four-game winning streak thanks to a 5-2 decision Wednesday in Glanbrook.
Zachary Johnson and Corson Folz were the only Sailors able to beat Rangers goalie Tomas Rozman.
Sean Golebowski led the Rangers with two goals, while Ryan Burke, Daniel Vella and Harrison Farrugia added singles.
Sunday, the Sailors had a hat trick from Nick D’Agostino and a pair from Matt Hielema in a very impressive 6-5 victory over the first-place Dundas Blues.
Ben Mason scored the other Sailors goal, while Eric Lorenz made 37 saves for the win.
James Almeida led the Blues with two goals, while Jacob Goffredo, Jake Proulx, Eric Bridgewater had one each.
The Sailors sit in second place in the PJHL’s Bloomfield Division with a 6-4 record. Sunday they host the Grimsby Peach Kings at 2pm.
Hawks earn second tie of season
Tanner Richardson made 34 saves, while Brendan Sulliavan and Jason Horvat scored goals as the Hagersville Hawks played the Glanbrook Rangers to a 2-2 tie on Saturday at home.
Christopher Buch and Sean Golebowski scored for the Rangers.
On Friday, Mikael Vicente and Connor Stirling scored for the Hawks in a 4-2 road loss to the Grimsby Peach Kings.
Quinn McIntosh, Dylan Cummings, Jaden Julien and Reid Woodcock scored for the Peach Kings.
The Hawks now 2-6-0-2 in PJHL Bloomfield Division action, host the Dunnville Mudcats Saturday at 7:30pm.
River Hawks take OT win over Mudcats
Alex Pettipiece scored in overtime to give the Niagara River Hawks a 3-2 win over the Dunnville Mudcats Friday in PJHL Bloomfield Division action.
Matt Fang and Brendan Davis exchanged goals in the second period, before Matthew Thurston and Tyler Brown did the same in the third.
Austin Davison and Cameron Johnston both made 30 saves for their respective teams.
The 1-5-2 Mudcats host the Dundas Blues Friday, before visiting the Hagersville Hawks.Both games are at 7:30pm.
Navy Vets sweep weekend with Merchants
The Woodstock Navy Vets swept a weekend home-and-home set with Highway 59 rivals Norwich Merchants. Both PJHL Doherty Division games ended in 4-2 scores.
Friday in Woodstock, Griffin Sinden, Lakin Hendry and Christian Pelley scored in the first period to pace the Vets to victory. Kyle Baker bookended the scoring in the third.
Brady VanYmeren and Kyle Brezinski scored for the Merchants.
Austin Storm made 41 stops in a losing cause for the Merchants.
On Saturday in Norwich, Brezinski and Parker Noble scored for the Merchants in the defeat.
Baker, Nolan Brett, Sinden, and Pelley scored for the Vets.
Now at 1-8-0-1, the Merchants host the Wellesley Applejacks Friday at 8pm, before hitting the road to play the Burford Bulldogs Saturday at 7:20pm.
Bulldogs drop two
Three goals in the first period is all the Hespeler Shamrocks needed to beat the Burford Bulldogs 5-2 in PJHL Doherty Division action on Sunday.
Callum Harvey and Owen Fischer rounded out the Shamrocks scoring.
Frankie Varga and Derick DaSilva responded for the Bulldogs.
The night before at home, DaSilva, Chase Machin and Carter Murphy scored for the Bulldogs in a 9-3 loss to the Tavistock Braves.
Ryan Donat, Drew Gerth and Ryan Suljak each scored a pair of goals for the Braves, while Nathan Teck, Marc Dionne, and Zach Gladding added one each.
The Bulldogs are now 0-9-0-1 and looking for their first win this weekend. Friday they are in New Hamburg to take on the Firebirds at 7:30pm, before hosting the Norwich Merchants at 7:20pm Saturday.