The Huron-Perth Minor Midgets fell to the Lambton Jr. Sting in a four point series by a 4-2 count, ending the Lakers season.
Game 1 of the series saw the Lakers travel to Sarnia and put on a solid showing, coming away with a 4-2 win. Sheldon Pryce had 2 markers in the game, Blake Wideman and Carter Schoonderwoerd had singles and Garrett Golley picked up the win in goal.
Game 2 followed the next day, back in Stratford. It was the Sting who came out quickly, scoring short-handed on a turnover at the Lakers blue line. The Sting player made a strong move to get the puck past Lakers goalie Carter Roth. Pryce would tie the game in the second on an Austin Mumby shot rebound. Early in the third, Schoonderwoerd would just miss the go-ahead goal, drilling the puck off the Sting netminder’s facemask. It was Lambton who would eventually take the lead with a little over 3 minutes left in the game on an odd-man rush. No chance for Roth. The Sting would add an empty-netter as time expired to take this one 3-1 and even up the series.
Tied at a game apiece, game 3 was back in Stratford with the winner moving on and the losing team finished for the season. Schoonderwoerd broke the ice six minutes into the contest with a long range wrister that whistled past the Sting goalie. The Lakers had a number of chances on the powerplay, including a full 2 minute 5-on-3, but they were unable to extend the lead. Lambton found the tying goal on a 2-on-1 rush inside the final 10 minutes of the game. The fans knew that the momentum had swung and we would be in for a nail-biting finish. With just over three minutes to play, the Sting took the lead on a shot off the rush that beat Golley over the blocker. From there, it was an all-out scramble to try to tie the game back up. The Lakers pulled Golley to the bench for the extra man, but it was Lambton with the goal into the empty net. In the final seconds of the game, defenseman Coleson Fischer would score in a scramble to make it a 3-2 final. Lambton took the series 4 points to 2, ending the Lakers season. A disappointing finish for sure, but the boys have nothing to hang their heads about.
A final skate was held on Thursday, after which the team cleaned out their lockers and said their goodbyes (for now). A tear or two was shed for sure - after so many months of working, laughing and battling together, tight bonds are formed, which can be described as no less than brotherhood. The boys will head their separate ways, and many will have new hockey homes next season. But the friendships forged over the past year will last a lifetime. Bravo boys, thanks for putting on a great show and congratulations on a successful season!