Bantam A/E Storm sweep Bracebridge in O.M.H.A. quarterfinals
by Ryan Lamont
click the link to view the video of the quarterfinal series game 3
The Lakeshore Recreation/ Bruce County Physio Bantam A/E Storm started their O.M.H.A quarter-final series with the Bracebridge Bears on Friday night at the Plex. Saugeen Shores goaltender Aaron Cruchley made some big saves early on to prevent his team from falling behind. Four minutes into the game, Cole Farrish forced a turnover in the Bracebridge zone and passed the puck back to the point for Aaron Miller. Miller fed Eric Parr in the slot where Parr was able to score high glove side to give the Storm a 1-0 lead. Saugeen continued to apply the pressure but could not add to their lead by the end of the first period. Early in the second, Farrish put the Storm up 2-0 by jamming in a loose puck at the side of the net. Jake Dawson and Ryan Crosetta got the helpers. Bracebridge would answer less than 3 minutes later, cutting the Storm lead in half. Late in the second, The Storm were able to increase their lead when Charlie Wilkinson scored off a rebound from a Connor Speer shot. The Storm led 3-1 after the second period. With five minutes to go in the third, Speer jammed in a loose puck with Farrish and Wilkinson assisting to give the Storm a 4-1 lead. Seconds later, Farrish scored to make it 5-1 with Dawson and Crosetta getting the helpers. Dawson then contributed by scoring high stick side from the slot with Crosetta and Miller assisting. Bracebridge would score again but the win was never in doubt for the Storm who took the opening game of the series 6-2.
Game 2 was Saturday again at the Plex. It did not start out so well for the Storm as Bracebridge scored in the first minute of the game. Cruchley made terrific saves to keep his team down by a goal. With five minutes to go in the first, Crosetta scored five hole from in tight with Aaron Kazimer getting the helper. The score remained a 1-1 tie after the first period. Early in the second, after some hard fore checking behind the Bracebridge net , Jesse Cannon brought the puck out in front and took a shot that deflected off of a Bracebridge stick and into the net to give the home team a 2-1 lead. Taylor Cameron got the assist on the Cannon goal. Strong penalty killing by Saugeen Shores had them up 2-1 after the second period. In the third, Wilkinson scored with Speer assisting to give Saugeen Shores a two goal lead. Parr also had an assist. Bracebridge would score two short-handed goals twenty-six seconds apart to tie the game. Less than a minute later after the Bracebridge goaltender was unable to control the rebound, Cameron fired home the game winner with Miller and Cannon assisting. Cruchley made a huge save in the final minute to preserve a 4-3 win for his team and a 2-0 series lead.
Saugeen Shores was looking to sweep the series 3-0 with a win Sunday in Bracebridge. The Storm came out hard knowing that it was do or die for The Bears. Both teams exchanged good scoring chances but were unable to put anything behind the goaltenders. Strong penalty killing in the second by the Storm, kept the game knotted at a scoreless tie. With less than a minute to go in the second, Speer was able to jam home a loose puck in front of the net to give Saugeen Shores a 1-0 lead. With no time left in the second, Bracebridge scored a goal at the buzzer. The game was tied at a goal a piece after the second period. The late goal by Bracebridge seemed to give the Storm some extra momentum in the third period. Halfway through the final frame after some hard puck pursuit in the Bracebridge zone by the Storm, Justin Lamont blasted home a shot from the slot with Cameron Mackay and Wilkinson assisting. The Storm had their second lead in the game, 2-1. Less than 2 minutes later, Dawson sprung a pass to Wilkinson who went in on a break away. Wilkinson scored five hole to give his team a 3-1 lead. Speer gave his team more insurance with a goal off a scramble in front to make it 4-1, with Parr and Wilkinson assisting. Bracebridge would add another goal to make it 4-2. With less then a minute to go in the game, Kazimer sealed the victory with an empty netter from a Wilkinson feed to give the Storm a 5-2 win and a 3 game sweep of Bracebridge.
The Storm advance to the O.M.H.A semi- finals against the winner of Lindsay versus Port Perry.