Well needless to say it was a rough week for the OJHL west division as they combined to go 1-4-2 in non-divisional games. Other than Georgetown’s win over Pickering the only other victories for the division were Buffalo over Orangeville and Hamilton over Georgetown. With the Governor’s cup coming up it is a perfect time for the division to turn things around and showcase its strength.
Game of the Week Review
Hamilton Jr Redwings @ Georgetown Raiders
For the second week in a row the OJHL west game of the week review takes us to Georgetown as this week the Raiders took on the upstart Hamilton Redwings. What looked like a mismatch on paper at the beginning of the season started changing after the first week as the Redwings came into this one with a 2-0 record against west division opponents and the Raiders had failed to live up to their lofty preseason rankings.
The first period however was played as if it were planned in the preseason with Georgetown buzzing the net and peppering Hamilton Goalie Corey Foster with 17 shots on goal. Anthony Marra was able to cash in on one of those chances to put Georgetown up by 1 in the first half of the opening Stanza. Luckily for the Jr Redwings Foster brought is “A” game and that was all the Raiders were able to muster. Late in the first period however the most exciting play in hockey occurred as the Jr Redwings were awarded a penalty shot although they were unable to convert and the Raiders entered the first intermission up 1-0
The second period the Jr Redwings kept it a lot closer. After being outshot 17-10 in period one the kept it much closer as Georgetown was only able to muster a 10-9 shot advantage. Just before the halfway mark Niko Porikos got Hamilton on the board to tie it at 1. The teams would exchange goals in the latter half of the period with Hamilton’s coming in the dreaded final minute and we were deuces wild. Tied at 2’s through 2 periods of play.
The third period the Raiders were all over the Jr Redwings outshooting them by a 16-7 margin. Unfortunately for the hometown team this onslaught did not deter the visiting Redwings as they took their first lead of the game inside 2 minutes. While the Raiders were able to tie things back up at 3 the Jr Redwings retook the lead for good as Christian DiGiacinto notched his 5th in 4 games with ’97 born rookie Josh Chariot picking up his 2nd assist in as many games. The Jr Redwings would add an empty netter and skate out of Georgetown with a 5-3 win
You can’t help but be impressed with this Jr Redwings team. After winning only 4 times in regulation last year they have already notched 3 such wins this season with all 3 coming against divisional opponents. Who knows what the rest of the season has in store but this is a team that I can see getting better and better as the year goes on.
West Division 3 Stars
1)Corey Foster (Ham)
The Hamilton native picked up his 2nd win of the season in a 40 save effort against division rival Georgetown.
2)Peter Angelopoulos (Ora)
The Orangeville trigger man added 4 goals and 2 assists in 3 games during week 2 and has now scored in all 6 games he has played this season. If only the Flyers could find some secondary scoring.
3)Pat Egan (Buf)
In Buffalo’s only game of the week Pat picked up a goal (game winner) and an assist in leading the jr sabres to a 7-3 win over Orangeville.
Rookie of the Week
Josh Chariot (Hamilton)
The ’97 born rookie and Hamilton Huskies Alum quickly made his presence felt for the Hamilton Jr Redwings as he picked up 2 assists in 2 games. Josh assisted on the only Hamilton goal Monday against Kingston and on the game winner against Georgetown on Wednesday.
Part of the local youth movement in place in Hamilton, Josh a North Bay (OHL) draft pick looks like quite the pickup someone who I am sure we haven’t heard the last of this season.
Honourable mention: Dennis Gilbert (Buf) 2 assists in 1 game.
Team of the Week
Buffalo Jr Sabres
Well it was a rough week for the west division as the Buffalo Jr Sabres were the only team to go undefeated. Yes even though it was only 1 game and it happened to come against last place Orangeville it was still enough for me to edge them over the Hamilton Jr Redwings who get the honourable mention for a 2nd week in a row.
It was a balanced attack that led the way for Buffalo as they scored 7 goals against Orangeville and no player had more than 2 points in the game. With 2 games this week one against the vaunted Trenton Golden Hawks and a showdown with Mississauga in the Governor’s Cup the Jr Sabre’s will be needing some more of that balanced scoring.
Honourable mention: Hamilton Jr Redwings
Game of the Week Preview
Milton IceHawks vs Toronto Lakeshore Patriots Saturday September 28th 8 PM
After having all of week 2 off the Icehawks have 3 games in week 3. What makes this match against TLP special is the potential goalie match up. With Ben Blacker entrenched as the starting goalie in Milton and Jeremy Helvig getting time in net for TLP you could see a matchup of the top 16 year old goalies in the OJHL. To top it all of this game has a prime time slot of 8pm at the Governor’s cup. While it may be a mismatch when looking at the standings this potential goalie match up makes it a must see for