Friday, February 27, 2015

Game 5: Crawford, Russell rise Sockeyes above Steelers

It was a crucial Game 5 Thursday night at Minoru Arena between the Richmond Sockeyes and the Grandview Steelers. Having dropped their first two playoff games at home, the Sockeyes hoped for a different fate in front of their home crowd Thursday, looking to take a 3-2 lead in the series.

It was a better start for the Sockeyes, as they finally managed to get a lead at home when Tyler Andrews scored on the power-play. Cole MacInnes made two pad saves before Andrews got the third try up and over MacInnes for the goal.

Kurt Russell started for Richmond, coming off back-to-back shutouts, including a 3-0 victory Wednesday night. The shutout streak ended early as just after Andrews’ opening goal, Tim Chow beat Russell to knot the game at one.

Daniel Oakley broke the tie five minutes into the 2nd, when he took the puck to the slot and rifled a shot far-side on MacInnes.

Sockeyes looked poised to double their lead, with multiple close calls in the Steelers crease.

It was eventually Grandview who tied it up in the 3rd when Adam Rota fed the puck in front to Austin Campeau, who one-timed an in-tight shot past Russell.

The score was only tied for a moment, as a mad scramble in front of MacInnes was poked home by Brodie Crawford, who was wearing a cage after taking a high stick in Game 2.

Sockeyes did well to shut down the Grandview offense until Troy Sutherland’s deflected shot at the empty net fluttered in.

Jordan Andrews had a notably strong game defensively, while his brother Tyler looked electrifying in the offensive end for Richmond. Jacob Wozney seemed impossible to knock off the puck and Russell looked completely dialed in to this game.

The Sockeyes took this one 4-2 the final. They now have won three straight and lead the series 3-2. Game 6 goes on Sunday, with a potential Game 7 taking place Monday at Minoru.

  • Bailey Meadows

Friday, February 20, 2015

Game 1: Chow, Steelers Stun Sockeyes

It was a rematch from last year’s first round playoff matchup for the Richmond Sockeyes. The Grandview Steelers visited Minoru Arena for the first playoff game of the year.

Sockeyes were without league-leading scorer Troy Kaczynski, who was injured in the final regular season game against the Port Moody Panthers.

The Sockeyes finished the regular season with a 4-1-1 record against the Steelers, though the Steelers took the last meeting in a 2-1 OT win. Richmond only lost three games at home all season, and won all their home games against Grandview.

The Steelers struck early, when a defensive lapse in front of Kurt Russell allowed Tim Chow to slide one into the Sockeyes goal.

The Sockeyes had the first penalty of the game, but were rewarded with three penalties in the final ten minutes of the 1st. The first two were unsuccessful, but Daniel Oakley’s wrist shot at the face-off dot beat Cole MacInnes to knot the game up at one before the period expired.

Matthew Bissett gave Richmond the lead just 30 seconds into the middle frame. He capitalized on a bounce off Lucas Mercer’s skate and snapped one post-and-in.

It was a physical affair throughout. Jake Wozney and Alex Rasovic were mixing it up in the 1st period, and each received 10-minute misconducts. Captains Jordan Andrews and Michael Wilmms exchanged pleasantries later and got separated by the refs before each sitting for two.

The Steelers had a great chance to tie the game late in the second but Sockeyes’ captain Jordan Andrews did well to stretch out and break up the play.

The Steelers would not be denied before period’s end. After Sockeyes failed to clear the zone, Pete Matthews took a wrist shot that beat Russell blocker side.

It became a one-period game heading into the third tied up at two.

On a delayed penalty, the Steelers took the lead early in the final frame. Chow slid one through the wickets of Russell for his second goal of the game.

Mac Colasimone was looking to tie it up but his blistering wrist shot rung off the crossbar and stayed out.

Sockeyes pushed to tie late, but Chow stole the puck in the neutral zone and flung it into the empty net for the hat-trick.

Sockeyes fall 4-2 to the Grandview Steelers, next game is Saturday, 5:45pm at Minoru Arena.

- Bailey Meadows

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Kaczynski, Colasimone lead Sockeyes over Panthers

The Sockeyes hosted the lowly Port Moody Panthers on Thursday, looking to get two points closer to the PJHL lead. The North Van Wolf Pack hold the league-lead, up six points on the Sockeyes, though Richmond does have a game in hand.

Good news on the injured list as Mac Colasimone returned from injury in this game. Troy Kaczynski was also returning from a two-game suspension. Those two rejoined Tyler Paterson on the Sockeyes’ top line.

It was a strong defensive game for both sides, limiting a large portion of shots from both teams to the outside.

Sockeyes controlled play for much of the first period, but it was the Panthers who struck first. Off a face-off, Evan Gain’s wrist shot snuck past an unsuspecting Nathan Alalouf.

Troy Sutherland evened the score in the second period on a low shot that went through a screen of bodies past Spencer Kozlowski.

Knotted up at one after 40 minutes, the game was looking for a difference-maker in the final period. Richmond’s top line answered the call as a breakaway pass from Colasimone hit the tape of Kaczynski, whose wrist shot squeaked past Kozlowski.

Kaczynski notched another goal minutes later as he undressed a defender before rippling the mesh for his 40th goal of the season.

The top line put an exclamation point on a spectacular period in the final minute when Kaczynski deked through the Panthers defense before dishing off to Colasimone for a tap-in.

Alalouf made 27 saves as the Sockeyes defeated the Panthers, 4-2.

North Van comes to town next Thursday in a battle of the top dogs.