HAMILTON SERIES OF REDEMPTION AND REVENGE! 99 Minor PeeWees off to Semi Finals!, News, Minor PeeWee, 2010-11 (Huron Perth Lakers)

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Feb 24, 2011 | mthibeault | 1560 views
In one of the tightest regular season’s races in the 99 Alliance Hockey divisions the 99 Lakers found themselves seeded 4th overall only 5 points behind the Eastern Division Reps who finished first. As a result the Minor PeeWee Lakers were scheduled to play the Reps in the first round of the Alliance PlayDowns.

With a successful season record of 3-0-1 against the Eastern Division Champs the Minor PeeWee Lakers could have easily been over confident and unprepared; but to the contrary, the players and team staff were committed to the challenges of playoff hockey from the drop of the puck in game 1 until the final buzzer in Game 5. Each game of this best of 5 series was, as predicted, a tight low scoring game with plenty of drama as it was a year before when these two teams met in the playoffs for the first time. In 2010, the 99 Lakers went 5 games against the Reps in round 2 before losing in sudden death OT on February 21st. However, the 2011 edition of this match up would have a dramatically different outcome.

Huron Perth vs Hamilton Series Recap

Game 1 - 2-0 Lakers!
Complete team effort; playing our game! Goaltender Brock Baier rock solid in net in earning the shutout; D-Men strong, smart and aggressive; forward group excellent performance in all areas of the ice.
GWG - Stockie,
EN Goal - Thibeault....on to Game 2!
Game 2 - 3-1 Hamilton
As in game 1, this game was fast paced going back and forth throughout each period. The team played very well; but could not capitalize on many scoring chances. They were reminded of the importance of playing tough in front of both our net and Hamilton's as this series was going to be won in those areas. Goaltender Baily Paquette was strong in the Lakers net when called upon; both D and Forward groups provided an excellent effort in the narrow defeat.
Game 3 - Lakers win 1-0!
Very intense, MUST win atmosphere on a Friday night in Hamilton. This game had everyone on the edge from the drop of the puck to the final buzzer. Lakers PK was the difference, as we not only killed off numerous penalties; but Kuno scores a "shorty" for the GWG! Brock Baier earned his second shutout of the series making several key saves; especially on a deflection late in the game to preserve the Game 3 victory. An excellent team effort by all players; D men Landry, Denny, Moorehead, Collinson and Derrough provided an outstanding performance in all areas of the ice; Forward group of Stockie, Thibeault, Hertel, Weinheimer, Rooke, Butchart, Vollmer, Kuno, were pushed and challenged as we were down our friend and teammate Deelstra; and they responded with an awesome effort in support of our very important win... ...sleep well everyone, Game 4 Saturday at 3pm.
Game 4 - Hamilton win 2-1 OT
Lakers strongest performance of the series! We dominated this hockey game; in all aspects! However after 2 periods the score of 1-0 Lakers had that bad or ill feeling to it... like we deserved better. The Lakers could not bury many great scoring chances they had created and earned in the first 2 periods and, unfortunately with less then a minute to play, the Reps tied it up. Taking that momentum that is usually gained on such a goal, Hamilton struck early in the OT... and Laker land was left in shock and disappointment... as the sense of "we were right there" was felt everywhere. Brock Baier took the tough loss in net, playing a solid game... all players put forth an outstanding game; giving it their all to end the series, only to come up "seconds" short!

Game 5- Lakers win game 2-0! Series 3-2
After losing a heart breaker in Game 4 on home ice to clinch the series the Lakers had to head back to Hamilton on a bright, sunny, blue sky kind of day with the same objective as they had in game one... WIN.

This game provided the opportunity to redeem our game 4 loss and revenge last year’s OT loss in Hamilton to end our season. Relentless, tireless play and action from both teams kept the scores at zero for much of the game. Shift after shift presented opportunities for both teams but it wasn’t until late in the 3rd period that the score changed with an odd man rush led by Lakers' Captain Jacob Rooke and his wingman, Noah Kuno. The pair blew out of their zone thanks to a well rehearsed outlet pass from Defenseman Ben Derrough. With that pass "Rooker" powered down the right wing drawing in the lone Hamilton defenseman deep in Hamilton territory before he found Kuno’s tape job in the slot. Without hesitation, Kuno released the puck and scored what would become the game winning goal with 6 minutes and 22 seconds on the clock. Valuable lessons from the previous game 4 taught our team the vulnerability of a one goal lead in a big game late in the 3rd so there was no time to let off the gas or tighten up. From that moment the game pace increased and Hamilton hemmed in the Lakers on several occasions while Laker Goalie Baily Paquette turned away several shots and battled through many scrums. Few whistles allowed for any meaningful breaks for either team. Bench doors opened and closed swiftly only to let out players one or two at time while the clock seemed to slow down and the game failed to ever end. Relief and celebration came unexpectedly with a failed attempt to keep the puck in Laker territory with a botched glove catch by Hamilton’s Dman. Lakers right winger Will Thibeault found the loose, bouncing puck in the Reps' player's feet and, bolting across the redline, sent the puck into the newly abandoned Hamilton net with only 55 seconds left on the clock. The game would eventually end 2-0 with the series ending 3 games to 2. Baily Paquette would earn the series ending shutout.

The Lakers allowed only 5 goals in 5 games and earned 3 key shutouts during the series thanks to Lakers goalies Baily Paquette and Brock Baier and the entire defensive play from all players.

Huron Perth now plays London’s only 99 AAA team in the semi finals.

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