Sailors end October with 6-2 win over Shamrocks and 2-8 loss to RiverHawks


By Jan Dean

SATURDAY night (Oct. 26) was so cold and wet outside that it made Port Dover Arena feel cozy in comparison.
Although winning that Saturday night game against the Hespeler Shamrocks by a decisive 6-2 score gave fans a warm feeling too.
The Sailors came on the ice fired up and ready to play. Fourteen and a half minutes into the first period Sailor Nicolas d’Agostino put the home team on the scoreboard first with an assist from George Kapralos.

Above: Saturday night’s game against the Hespeler Shamrocks saw Sailors take control.

The Shamrocks returned the favour less than a minute later courtesy of Shamrock Drew Fulton (Matthew Hayward, Ryan Frost) to tie the game.
In the second period the Sailors got a goal from Dylan Stroud, assisted by Nicolas d’Agostino, then a goal from Keaton Kewley assisted by Ashton Mikasko during the first six minutes. About five minutes later Sailor Tyler Heisey scored an unassisted goal.
The Shamrocks scored their last goal of the game at 14:01 of the second period from Nick Donelle (Kyle Wagner, Devin Schneider).
In the third period Sailor Austin Grech scored a goal, assisted by Ashton Mikasko and Connor Hisaw. Tyler Heisey capped the night with a second goal, assisted by Hayden Butler and Ashton Mikasko.
It was a fast game with lots of scoring chances. Winning Sailor goaltender Andrew Hawkins stopped 35 shots from the Shamrocks while Shamrock goalie stopped 40 shots from a determined Sailors team.
As the game progressed, you could see the Shamrocks’ frustration building and their confidence declining. The more desperate to score a team gets, the more missed passes, missed shots and missed opportunities result.

Sunday’s game

Fans saw the same dynamic in Sunday afternoon’s game (Oct. 27) against the Niagara RiverHawks – only this time it was the Sailors that ran out of gas.
You couldn’t tell by the way the game started.
Sailor Aden Morton-Ferguson with an assist from Dylan Stroud scored less than half a minute into the first period.
Then it was the turn of the RiverHawks to score. At 12:17 came a goal from Alex Pettipiece (Dante Massi) and RiverHawk Brady Bannon (Eric Lowe, Tyler Seguin) scored again with just under five minutes in the period.
In the second period, RiverHawks scored twice in the first 6.5 minutes – first by Zachary Pettit (Keith Palmer) and then by Jayden Engberts, shorthanded with an assist from Brady Bannon.
With less than 30 seconds to go in the period, the Sailors put up their last goal of the game by Nicolas d’Agostino on a power play, assisted by George Kapralos.
The third period belonged to the RiverHawks who notched another three goals. At 4:29 Eric Lowe (Konnor VanHeesch, Brady Bannon) scored. Then Derek Pymont (Keith Palmer, Zachary Pettit) scored on a power play and finally Dante Massi (Jayden Engberts) scored.
The game was fractious with lots of chirping and invitations to fight which translated into penalties. In all, the RiverHawks served 27 minutes in the sin bin on 10 infractions while the Sailors served 45 minutes on 10 penalties.
The Sailors kept trying, but couldn’t convert scoring opportunities to goals – despite 46 shots on net.
Sailors goalie Andrew Hawkins got the loss after stopping 39 of 41 shots on goal. The winning goalie was Matthew Boere.
Sailor Keaton Kewley was ejected from the game seconds before the end of the second period along with RiverHawk Carter LeRoux for fighting.
It was a tough game to watch, but Keaton said it was just as tough to play.
“We had four games and a practice this week and we’re down too many players with injuries and flu,” said Keaton.
“We need to play with more discipline – we’re taking too many penalties,” he said.
Keaton played last year with Glanbrook but switched to the Sailors because hockey stopped being fun for him last year.
So far this season, Glanbrook is in second place – eclipsing the sixth place Sailors.
Nonetheless, the Hamilton native is enjoying hockey again.
“There are a lot of good guys on this team and they’ve been terrific,” said Keaton.
He is currently attending Conestoga College for a fire fighting program after serving as a volunteer firefighter in the Hamilton area.
Sailors Asst. Coach Mike Walker said it’s no excuse for losing, but the team simply ran out of gas.
“The guys have been on ice six of the last seven days and because of injuries we’re still icing four Defence,” said Walker. “We have four guys injured who are due back any day. At one point in this game we only had 10 skaters.”
Despite that, he said there is real chemistry developing on the team and players are starting to develop.
Despite injuries, the Sailors have won some games, starting on Thanksgiving weekend when they tallied their first win of the season at home on the Sunday game against the Dunneville Mudcats after tying the Hagersville Hawks the night before.
Now they’re focused on getting healthy and getting more players on the ice for their next games this week.
On Oct. 31 they play the Dundas Blues, then play the Dunn-ville Mudcats on Nov. 1.
Sailors next home game is Sunday, Nov. 3 at 2 p.m. against Hagersville Hawks.


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