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73's Complete Sweep 6-2 in Penalty Filled Game
By: Kevin E. Neels
The Dresden Jr. Kings attempted to put a whole lot of fear into the Essex 73's Wednesday evening, with their physical play, but failed, and came out on the wrong end of a 6-2 score to see their season come to an abrupt end.
Period one was tame for the most part as Essex grabbed a two goal lead before the intermission. Tyler Turner scored his first on the night just over two minutes in on a pretty tic tac toe play with line mates Tyler Scott and Matthew Hebert. The second goal came off the stick of Phil Janikowski late in the period on a crazy bounce.
The second period was full of action with five goals, and a steady stream to the sin bin for both clubs. Essex increased their lead just over a minute in as Matthew Rosati blasted a point shot past Kings starting goaltender Scott Tricker on an Essex power play. This ended Tricker's evening and brought in Daniel Tonietto from the bull pen. Tonietto would fare no better on this evening however. Five minutes later Scott Bromley took a pass while stepping in from the blue line and write it into the top corner of the net for a 4-0 73's lead. Dresden finally got on the score board a couple of minutes later on another strange goal. Essex added to the home team's pain with another pair of markers before the period ended as Tyler Scott used his speed to pick up a lose puck, and beat Tonietto, and Tyler Turner slapped a huge rebound into an empty cage for his second goal on the night.
Essex replaced starting goaltender Noah Hedrick to start the third period as Colin Lauzon came in to finish this game up. Essex went into defense mode for the most part,allowing the Kings a single tally late in the game.
"This was a tough, chippy series, " said, Tyler Turner, "It felt good to end it tonight however. The next series should be a dandy, and I am really looking forward to it, especially if it is Amherstburg. We are a confident bunch, and feel our system is tough to play against."
Essex will now sit back and wait for the winner of the Blenheim and Amherstburg series. Either way the next series will begin in Essex next week.
Hedrick Shines as 73's Take Commanding Lead in Series
By: Garrett Fodor
Coming off Friday nights 4-3 OT win, Essex was back at it Tuesday hosting the Dresden Jr. Kings in game 3 of this best of seven series.
In the first period, Essex drastically outshot the visitors 15-3, and were the much better team, using their speed to their advantage. But when the clock ran out at the end of twenty minutes of play the 73's held a slim 1-0 advantage, courtesy of defenseman Nick Mainella who notched his first playoff goal picking the top corner past Kings net minder Daniel Tonietto.
When the puck was dropped in period two, it was quite clear that Dresden was going to push much harder than in the opening frame. Much of the first ten minutes of play in period two was between the blue lines. 14 minutes into the period the home team doubled their lead as the speed of Tyler Scott and Matthew Hebert, while killing off a penalty paid off with Hebert finishing it off with a beautiful deke to deposit the puck into the empty cage behind Tonietto.
The extra cushion was short lived however as the Kings finally beat Noah Hedrick a minute and a half later while on the power play. Before the period would end the 73's would regain the cushion as Anthony Cristofaro grabbed a rebound off the back boards and tucked the puck between Tonietto's legs with just 33 ticks left on the clock.
As the game progressed, similar to the previous two games, so did the undisciplined play from both sides. The locals got themselves into penalty trouble and gave the Kings a number of chances to get themselves back into this game. But there was a big problem, actually two problems facing the visitors, the Essex penalty kill, and Noah Hedrick. Both were superb, not just on this night, but all series long. Essex put the visitors out of their misery with one more tally late in the game. Tyler Scott found the back of the net after much hard work along the boards from line mate Matthew Hebert.
"I felt we started off great tonight, our first two periods were exceptional, " said, Hebert, "We were clicking, and controlling the play, and just doing our thing. The third period, we just were not there. We started real slow, and then took too many penalties again, something we have been struggling with this series. If we don't get this part of our game fixed it will eventually end up hurting us, as we can't be killing off a dozen penalties each time out.
Luckily we had the bounces going our way tonight, and we got the job done."
Game 4 goes Wednesday in Dresden at 8:00 pm.
73's Takes Two-Game Lead With Hard-Fought 4-3 Overtime Win in Dresden
By: Garrett Fodor
The locals were back at it on Friday evening after their decisive victory in game one Tuesday. The first period was unlike anything from the first game as both teams were very disciplined and played pretty evenly. Both teams had shifts where they controlled the puck very well and created some good scoring opportunities. Essex was fortunate enough to get the only goal in the opening twenty minutes courtesy of Michael Vieira who one timed a pass five hole beating Kings net minder Daniel Tonietto.
Period two was similar to period one in the early going with Essex upping their lead to 2-0 on a Matthew Hebert power play score. The remainder of the period saw the 73's get themselves in a heap of penalty trouble, but once again the penalty killing unit did an exceptional job, especially with an extended 5 on 3 for the home team. Noah Hedrick was sharp in goal as well as Essex headed to the dressing room clinging to the two goal cushion.
The Kings stormed out of the dressing room for period three, and cut the deficit in half in the first minute of play as Jordan Durston stepped around a falling Essex defender and made no mistake. Three minutes later Vieira restored the visitors two goal cushion on a wrap around. Dresden was unwilling to go down without a fight however, and continued to press. The Kings were rewarded with about seven minutes remaining as they crashed the net and beat Hedrick again to give them life once again. Four minutes later the home team created a turnover deep in Essex territory and tied this game up. Essex stormed back in the final few minutes to create a number of good chances but could not find beat Tonietto, and this game was headed to overtime.
In overtime Essex once again controlled the puck. After picking off a botched pass out attempt Jordan Ryan picked up the puck, but lost it in his skates just before reaching the net, however, Ryan received all the help he needed when a Dresden defender knocked the puck off Ryan's stick, and past Tonietto at the same time to give Essex the win and a 2-0 series lead.
"It felt good to get the OT winner, and it is a great feeling when you turn around and the whole team is celebrating as they skate towards you, " said, Ryan, "I thought the team played a great game tonight, and our overall effort is what got us the win." Ryan finished the night with two points, and defenseman Alex Derksen also added a pair of points in the win.
Essex and Dresden return to battle Tuesday in Essex at 7:00 pm.
73's Win Bloody Game 1 of GLJHL Semi Finals Versus Dresden
By: Garrett Fodor
After a 10 day hiatus from playoff hockey the 73's were back in action Tuesday as they hosted the Dresden Jr. Kings in one of the league semi-final series.
The play after the opening face-off was sloppy and very undisciplined. Players were falling all over the ice and it was Essex who capitalized on this. Phil Janikowski was sprung on a breakaway and Jr. Kings goaltender Scott Tricker attempted to beat Janikowski to the puck.
Tricker, on his way to the puck thought better of chasing it down, and when he attempted to backtrack he slipped and fell giving Janikowski an open basket to open the scoring just four minutes into the game. Seven minutes later the locals doubled their lead as Jordan Ryan was positioned in the right place at the right time picking up a Matthew Rosati rebound off the back boards and beat Tricker on the power play. Despite the officials efforts to keep this game in check, the chippiness only got worse as the game progressed.
The second period went beyond chippiness, and got downright nasty at times. Amongst all this the Kings cut the deficit in half four minutes into the period as Essex native Justin Melo beat Noah Hedrick on a rebound. Janikowski restored the two goal cushion a few short minutes later also on a rebound. Essex showed their nasty side just a short time later and were issued 9 minutes in penalties handing the visitors a golden opportunity to get back into this game and gain some momentum. If that wasn't bad enough, the 73's were whistled for another infraction putting them down two men. At this point the Essex penalty killing units took over and did an incredible job of not only keeping Dresden off the score sheet, but not allowing many quality shots on net in the process.
In the third, Essex was quick to pick up where they left off before all the penalties. Less than a minute into period three Daniel McIntyre found the back of the net to increase the lead to 4-1, before Daniel Slipchuk completed the scoring mid period to make the final score 5-1. Essex outshot Dresden 38-30 on the night.
"I think it is important to keep your cool, and keep your head in the game at this time of year as the opposition is always trying to get you off your game, " said Noah Hedrick, "We have to be better, and not let it get to us. Going into game two , we need to bring the game we had in the second half of tonight's game."
Essex will be in Dresden Friday for game two of this series at 7:30pm.
NOTES: Essex power forward Dan Mainella is expected to be in the lineup Friday night… Brad Carroll received a match penalty and will likely face a 4-game suspension… Daniel Slipchuk had 1 goal and 2 assists and played strong on the penalty kill… Tyler Scott was selected Subway player of the game.