The 99 Major Atom Lakers traveled to Cambridge for the Preston International Hockey Tournament and left with a record of 2-2.
The Lakers started the tournament with a solid team effort and a 3-1 victory over the North Central Predators. The line of Noah Kuno, Jacob Rooke and Dillon Weinheimer was highly effective figuring in on all three goals. Kuno led the way with a goal and two assists, Rooke had two assists while Weinheimer added a single goal. Kade Landry had a goal and an assist from the blueline to round out the attack. Evan Moorehead and Bradley Kraemer were solid defensively and Brock Baier sharp in the Lakers' goal.
Unfortunately, the positive result did not carry forward to their next game as bad habits resurfaced and the Lakers went down to a 3-0 defeat to the Markham Waxers. Justin Beuermann and Mitchell Newson had strong games as did Brett Denny and Ben Derrough while Baily Paquette played great in goal.
Needing a win to advance, the Lakers squared off against St. Catherines in the final game of the round robin. St. Catherines jumped to an early lead and appeared headed to victory as they entered the start of the third period up by a 3-1 score with our only goal coming from Mitchell Newson going hard to the net early in the game. The Lakers utilizing the entire team, pulled off a dramatic come from behind victory as they scored three times with Carter Collinson getting the winner with 8 seconds left. Will Thibeault returned from a serious injury to add to the scoring with 1 goal and an assist on Carters Collinsons game winner, While Hunter James added a single on a huge point shot assisted with a direct pass from Ashton Stockie. Tanner Hertel added four assists. Denny and Landry were great defensively while Baier was outstanding in goal making several big stops with the game in doubt.
After the big victory, the Lakers’ reward was a quarterfinal matchup against the 5th ranked team in the province – the Peterborough Petes. The Lakers fought vainly but the Petes' strong team play and skating won the day as the game ended in a 3-0 loss and the end of the tournament for the Lakers. Kuno and Landry were exceptional all tournament and were rewarded with berths on the All Star team.
Written by Mike Weinheimer