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Essex 73's 2012-13 Annual Awards' Banquet - Individual Winners
Corey Beaulieu was awarded Leading Scorer and Player of the Year
Alex Garon was awarded Playoff Most Valuable Player
Jordan Brohman was awarded Most Consistant Player
Matthew Hebert was awarded Most Sportsmanlike Player
Garon and Brohman Lead 73's to 17th GLJHL Championship
By: Kevin E. Neels
The Essex 73's won the Great Lakes Jr. "C" championship once again Sunday night after completing a four game sweep of the Wheatley Sharks with a 7-4 win.
The Sharks had trouble containing Essex' big offensive line consisting of Jordan Brohman, Alex Garon, and Corey Beaulieu all series and Sunday was no different. Both Brohman and Garon recorded hat tricks and the line had 13 points in total on the night.
Special teams was also a key factor in the game as both teams combined for seven goals with special teams on the ice.
It looked like Essex was going to roll in this game as they dominated the first seventeen minutes of the period building up a 4-0 advantage on a pair of goals by Garon with singles going to Brohman and Matthew Hebert.
The Sharks crept back into the game with a pair of power play goals just over a minute apart late in the period.
The first ten minutes of period two produced no scoring but the flood gates opened up once again in the last half of the period. Wheatley cashed in on another power play marker first to make this a one goal game but the 73's pulled away once again with three more scores of their own, two goals coming just twenty seconds apart. Brohman with a pair and Garon with a single handles the scoring for Essex.
Period three was a rather tame period for the most part as Essex was content to just kill the clock and Wheatley for the most part did not look like a team in desperate need of a win as they did not create many scoring chances. At 7:01 the home team did manage to get one back as Essex goaltender Trevor Wheaton seemed to fan on a point shot, but this was as close as Wheatley would get.
First star of the game Alex Garon said, "Coming into this series Coach had a strategy to go up against these guys and everyone bought in and it worked. Basically we knew we had to shut down their one big line, and work real hard from start to finish. Many of the guys in the dressing room have already won a championship and brought a lot of experience in knowing what it takes to win."
Assistant Coach Steve Caldwell said," We are a bit surprised that we took these guys in four games, but I am sure that the seven game series they had against Belle River was a big factor in the final outcome of this series. At the end of the day I believe the main reason why we won this series was because of our incredible depth. We have four very strong, solid lines and our versatility is also something we can use to our advantage."
The 73's now await the winner of the Southern Ontario Junior Hockey League. Ayr leads that series over Lambeth, 3-0.
Dec 30, 2012
Essex Celebrates 40 Years of Junior C Hockey
Sports Columnist for The Windsor Star
The Shoppers Drug Mart in Essex features a Santa Claus painted on its picture window next to the main entrance.
No surprise there.
The only difference being that this Santa is carrying a hockey stick and wearing skates and an Essex 73’s uniform.
Even Old Saint Nick gets what the 73’s mean to Essex.
They are the gift that keeps on giving.
Celebrating their 40th season of existence, the 73’s welcomed back dozens of alumni to weekend festivities culminating with a game Sunday afternoon against the Leamington Flyers alumni.
As per usual, the rink was packed.
“It’s been like that since it started,” said Dave Prpich, who coached the 73’s from 1974-82, leading them to three of the franchise’s six Schmalz Cup OHA Jr. C championships. “Half the fun is the people around here. It’s unbelievable the number of people who get involved as volunteers.”
In an era where senior hockey has virtually vanished from the landscape and several junior B and C squads struggle to survive, the 73’s continue to thrive.
“They’re a legendary junior C franchise,” Prpich said. “It starts and ends with the Essex 73’s as far as I’m concerned.”
Take a walk through Essex and there’s evidence of the support this this town offers to its orange-and-black clad heroes.
Some of them, like Warren Rychel, went on to winthe Stanley Cup. Others, such as the Crowder brothers Keith and Bruce, Dave Gagnon and Kyle Wellwood, left Essex to play in the NHL.
Regardless, playing for the 73’s will remain a significant time in their lives.
“I remember back to my uncles playing when the team first started,” recalled former Detroit Red Wing Gagnon, who tended goal for Essex from 1983-85. “I remember as a kid coming to watch them play and it was larger than life.
“The biggest summer of my life was when I got that letter from the 73’s saying I was invited to camp. I’ve still got that letter. “It was real important. It was pretty big.”
The Crowders were key cogs in 1974-75 when the 73’s won their first provincial title, following an epic seven-game final against Lindsay.
Keith assisted on Bruce’s last-minute goal that gave the 73’s a 3-2 Game 7 triumph before 2,500 at the old Essex rink.
“It was a pretty exciting time,” Keith Crowder said. “It was huge. It was a thrill to play in our hometown.”
Tony Piroski guided the 73’s to three more provincial crowns in the last decade, and Sunday, players from all eras came from near and far to prove that while you can take the boy out of Essex, you’ll never take the memories of playing for the 73’s out of the man.
Dave Anthony, the 73’s’ all-time scoring leader, travelled from Blackpool, England to be part of the festivities.
“I come home every year and I always come down to the rink,” said Anthony, a 73’s player from 1977-80. “I’ll drop the puck for them, anything I can to help.
“I think this is probably one of the better teams, because this truly is a community team. You won’t beat the 73’s for that.”
Anthony opted out of a planned holiday vacation in Tenerife, Spain for this happy homecoming.
“This time of year, I usually go somewhere where it’s warm,” Anthony said. “About three weeks ago, I got an e-mail asking if I wanted to play. I said, ‘No problem. I’m there. Put me down.’”
It may not have been warm, but everywhere Anthony went during alumni weekend, there was plenty of warmth.
It’s been that way in Essex since the 73’s got started.
Essex won the Alumni Classic against their 70s/80s arch-rivals, the Leamington Flyers, 9-2.
Scoring for Essex was Dan Mahon (2), Warren Rychel, Jeff Brett, Norm Kerr, Darin Rickeard, Paul Reeb, Gord McDonnell and Jeff Ives. Goaltenders Dave Gagnon and Don Tolmie each gave up one goal and played terrific for the 73's Alumni.
SX - Mahon (Findlay)
SX - Reeb (Mahon, Quinlan)
SX - Ives (Brett)
SX - Rychel SHOOTOUT GOAL
SX - Brett (Meyer, Pluimers)
SX - Mahon (2) SHOOTOUT GOAL
LEAM - John Ferguson SHOOTOUT GOAL
SX - McDonnell (Ives, Kerr)
LEAM - Harrison (Drummond, Clifford)
Goal: LEAM - Gillett
Goal: SX - Gagnon, Tolmie
BELOW IS THE PLAYERS WHO DRESSED IN THE ESSEX 73's ALUMNI CLASSIC GAME:
|2||F||Darin Rickeard "A"||1985-89|
|4||F||Ted Labrash "C"||1982-85|
|5||D||Mike Reaume "A"||1977-78|
|16||F||Mark McGuire "A"||1976-78|
|17||D||Mike Quinlan||1974, 76|
|18||F||Gord McDonnell||1982-83; 1985|
|49||F||Kevin Meyer||1983; 1985-86|
|77||F||Jeff Brett||1985-86, 1988-89|
|Coach||Dave Prpich||1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982|
|Coach||Dave Moore||2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010|
|GM||Mike Sadler||1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983|
|Equipment||Frank Matthys||1973 - Present|
Trainer Frank Spry
Photos by FRED GROVES/The Essex Free Press
(Below) Photos courtesy of MATT DOYSCHER
ESSEX 73's TRIVIA WILL RETURN IN SEPTEMBER 2013
Deadline: Sunday 11:59pm Sunday before next Essex 73's home game.
This week's winner receives two (2) tickets to the next Essex 73's home game.
1) Select your choice
2) If your choice is correct, and you are the only person to answer the question correctly, you are the winner
3) Tie breaker determined by draw. Example two or more correct answers, all will be entered into a draw and first person's name pulled is the winner
4) Winning prize will be available for pickup at Essex 73's box office the night of next home game
5) You can enter as many times as you want providing you use a unique and valid email address
6) You can only win once in a given month
7) Valid ID required to claim prize
8) Prize has no cash value and can not be exchnaged or refunded
9) Executive members ineligible