by the sportsguy
Sunday afternoon, the Kemptville 73’s hosted their annual game in support of DIFD. Do It For Deron raises awareness and inspires conversation in a attempt to transform youth mental issues. Deron’s father, Luke Richardson, with 73’s coach and former Ottawa Senators team-mate Ron Tugnutt, joined the teams on ice for puck drop at 2:00 pm, as the Smiths Falls Bears were in town for the challenge.
DIFD merchandise, with a bake sale, chuck-a-puck, and 50/50 draw, were available in the lobby for purchase, with all proceeds going to DIFD. The Ottawa Therapy Dogs display was set up with two working canines present, “Molly and “Vesna”, which were very popular with the fans.
Smiths Falls Bears were hungry for a win to give them a better chance for the chase in the playoff standings, with Kemptville 73’s on the same game plan.
First frame was like watching the game in slow motion, with a soft rubber puck bouncing from play-to-play. Bears managed to tame bouncing puck at the line, as Harley, with Busschaert to Kris Lalonde, who lifted a weak one into Hodgins glove that was bobbled to put them on the sheet at 2:07.
The fans were anticipating the 73’s would change gears, from reverse to overdrive, for the second go-around. The combination of York from own zone, ahead to Tugnutt, through the neutral zone, across to Tyler Beauparlant to even it up at 18:53. Bears countered at 14:58, when Wichers was hauled down (no call), Kettyle over to Busschaert to rifle one through sprawling defenders, and Alex DiCarlo injected the rebound to make it a one-goal lead. Gibson with Garvey from half wall, across to point, as Kyle Dowdall launched an easy one over Hodgins’ shoulder for Bears’ insurance at 11:16 for PPG. Kemptville attack with man advantage at :34, when down low cycle from Row, up to Dow across to Tugnutt to Victor Tracy, as Dobson just waved at the wrister to pull them within one.
Last twenty: the Bears picked up their insurance at 12:21, when McKenney, with Folkes smothering the crease, as Ethan Cothart moved from the point to rumble the mesh to put them up 4 – 2. Gaudet wins the draw, over to Bastasin, who slams one from just below the line and Alex Row re-directs the rebound past Dobson to give the fans something to get excited about and move the boys within one at 9:02. Tugnutt manoeuvres disc across to Dow, over to Alexis Giguere, to hammer one through a crowd, over stopper’s shoulder, to bring the crowd to their feet with a tie game at 6:54. Unfortunately, the Bears take advantage of the bouncing rubber, as Garlasco, with Garvey, to the net and Kyle Dowdall bats in the run at 1:24 to break the tie. 73’s pull Hodgins for extra attacker at :31, but hour glass ran out.
Kemptville out-gunned Smiths Falls 35 to 23, but suffered a loss of 5-4.
Thursday night’s meeting with Brockville Braves was a fast and furious affair, with Kemptville 73’s on the attack from the puck drop to give Hodgins a 5 SO and the 73’s 3-0 victory.
Eleven NHL scouts and three central scouts, here to observe two Junior players on their watch list, were treated to an excellent exhibition of Junior A Hockey.
73’s opened up the scoring at 10:06, when Samanski found Bastasin, to Victor Tracey breaking over the line to deposit it top corner stick side.
Second period was owned by the 73’s, as they swarmed Johnson with continuous pressure from Dow, with Tugnutt, and finally Tyler Beauparlant capitalized at 12:25. Gaudet to Alavi across to Alex Row to launch a low missile, as Gaudet slid in front to screen the goalie at 5:24 to make it 3-0.
Final twenty minutes, both squads had to rely on their PK, as PIM were handed out and it remained scoreless with opportunities both ends. 73’s peppered Henry Johnson with 55 SOG to Hodgins 31.
Saturday night’s against the Ottawa Junior Senators was a must win to keep the 73’s, but they had a different plan that they put into place to come away with 5-3 win.
Initial period: the 73’s drew first blood at 18:32, when Hunter, after half board struggle to Alavi breaking up the wing, over to Alex Row to bury it deep. Senators tied it up at 17:49, when Darcy Walsh, with helpers from Simson and McGregor, beat Hodgins. Alex Row posted second of night when Gaudet found him in line to launch a missile at 11:20 for the tie breaker. Chewetin Backsmith, assisted by McCaw and Anderson, even it up to close the first at 1:59.
Senators came on strong in the second at 11:59, as Burke to Zachary Cross to move ahead by one. Samanski combined with Tugnutt on a PP to Tyson Kirkby to rifle it by Campbell for a tie at 9:21. Ottawa bounced back, when Merrick Rippon, with helpers from Burke and Cross, at 7:23 to make it 4-3. Boulerice to Nicolas Samson with man advantage and PPG at 5:56 for Senators insurance to chase Nicholas Hodgins to the shower. Ottawa pulled Campbell for extra attacker at 4:44, and then, at 4:43, after Kemptville assessed minor, Senators called TO with stopper back between the posts. Last twenty was a scoreless event, with both clubs having equal chances, and, at 1:16, Kemptville pulled Peter Brooks for EA and 73’s took TO to calm the troops at :36. Although 73’s recorded 46 SOG to 32 for Junior Senators, they suffered a 5-3 loss.
Just a reminder: the 73’s are on a push to play-offs and they would love to see you come out to support them on their way. Next home game is Friday, March 3, at 7:30, when the first place Carleton Place Canadians are in the community barn……see you there.
Come on out and experience “Hockey with Edge”…..support your community 73’s.