Finally the long and at times almost endless
regular season has come to a close for the Waxers. Tuesday night Markham hit
the road and came away with a 5-4 win over the Oshawa Legionaires in a contest
that saw the blue and white look disinterested at times (with third place
already secured) while the Legionaires were hoping to nail down fourth place.
The Waxers struck quickly when Jason
Duffy got credit for a goal, his 9th of the year when the puck caromed
off his body behind the Oshawa netminder just past the two minute mark. Derek
Doucette and Mark
Mitchell picked up the assists.
The Legionaires played with a desperation that
befit a club looking to advance in the standings and while most of the Waxers
left their game in the dressing room (or so it seemed at times), Rick
Marnon was left to fend for himself and often and turned away numerous
Oshawa threats. Finally with less than five minutes remaining in the period the
Legionaires tied it up after Marnon had made a spectacular stop only to watch
helplessly as the resulting rebound was sent over top of him into the cage to
tie the score at 1-1. Without the spectacular first period performance of
Marnon this game might have been decided in the opening frame and not in the
favour of the blue and white.
In the last minute of play of the first, Jason
Young made no mistake when he was the recipient of a polite rebound,
the puck came right to his stick, along the ice and flat, that goal sent the
clubs to their first intermission with Markham on top 2-1. Paul
Robinson and Robert
Burrows drew the assists.
The Waxers started the second period with a
purpose and after controlling the play for almost the entire time since the
faceoff to start the frame, Duffy whipped home his second of the night, 10th of
the year from Adam Doucette
and Mark Menonte.
The Legionaires would recover to nullify the
Waxer advantage and the score was tied at 3-3 heading into the third.
It wouldn't take the Waxers long to regain the
advantage as Patrick Diotte
fired home his first of the year (and his first Jr. A goal) from Kevin
Tompkins and Jesse
Seven minutes later Kevin
Cribari made a great play, firing the puck while off-balance from the
left of the Legionaire goal to make it 5-3. Cribari's 19th of the year was
assisted by Tompkins and Diotte. That goal would turn out to be both the game
winning marker and the final regular season goal of the 2000-01 campaign for
the Waxers. Cribari's success is a tribute to his hard-nosed yet simple
approach to the game, "work hard, work often and good things will
happen", hockey is really a not a complicated matter when approached with
Late in the period the Legionaires closed the
gap to 5-4 on a powerplay to conclude all scoring.
To say this wasn't a Waxer masterpiece would be
an understatement of some magnitude, however, it's a sign of a good hockey club
that on off-nights they still manage to do enough to win on the scoreboard.
Also encouraging was the fact that the Waxers
received goals from some sources that had been quiet in that department for
Adam Doucette and Duffy were perhaps the two
best forwards on the ice, in the first two periods, Doucette appeared at times
to be the only Waxer who was willing to pay the price and dutifully finished
off his checks all night.
Two outstanding defensive efforts were key to
gaining the two points, Albert
Ferrante made a great block and then later while the Waxers were
working to kill off an extended penalty situation Marnon made a save only to
have the puck trickle by him and just as it appeared that it would roll past
the goal line for an Oshawa goal, Andy
Schofield alertly made the "save of the game" when he slapped
the puck out of harm's way and not a second too soon.
Now the Waxers practise as usual on Wednesday
evening and following the conclusion of the Ajax/St. Michael's contest they'll
finally find out who their first round playoff opponent will be.
Since the New Year the Waxers have streaked to a
9-1-1-1 (20 points out of a possible 26), that recent record is a true
indication of the capability of the club as it coincided with the return of
many injured players (numerous key contributors). There is no reason for Waxer
fans to believe that their upcoming playoff journey will be anything but an
extended one (leaving many broken hearts of opposing teams in their wake), our
goal remains unchanged from the beginning of the year: Get
to the Royal Bank Cup.
It is quite possible (even very likely) that
there will not be any delay in launching the first round series there will
unfortunately not be a lot of notice with respect to the schedule. We will of
course publish the schedule as soon as it has been determined (which of course
has to wait until the opponent has been confirmed).
|G A M
E S U M M A R Y
1. Markham, Duffy 9 (Mitchell, DDoucette), 2:19.
2. Oshawa, Arbour (PP) (Griffin, McEvoy), 15:23.
3. Markham, Young 11 (Robinson, Burrows), 19:37.
Uniacke OSH (high sticking), 2:48; Regan Mar (roughing), 7:02;
Tompkins Mar (high sticking), 10:39; Robinson Mar (roughing), Pons
OSH (holding), 13:47; ADoucette Mar (slashing), 14:57.
4. Markham, Duffy 10 (ADoucette, Menonte), 2:00.
5. Oshawa, Matthews (McEvoy, Kosiw), 11:40.
6. Oshawa, Uniacke (Deir, Kosiw), 16:12.
Matthews OSH (slashing), 3:31; ADoucette Mar
(slashing), Pons OSH (roughing), 10:01; DDoucette Mar (high
7. Markham, Diotte 1 (Tompkins, Boucher), 0:37.
8. Markham, Cribari 19 (Tompkins, Diotte), 7:48.
9. Oshawa, Griffin (PP) (Lemmon, McEvoy), 11:59.
Menonte Mar (holding), Smyth OSH (holding), 0:56; Pons
OSH (slashing), 2:15; MStoyan Mar (roughing, head checking major,
game misconduct), Kosiw OSH (roughing), 8:18; ADoucette Mar (high
sticking, misconduct), Mitchell Mar (roughing after whistle), Deir
OSH (roughing after whistle), 9:31.
Markham: Rick Marnon. Oshawa: Bob Lemmon.