It’s all over, congratulations to the Ottawa Cannons who came from behind in the Finals to take home the Winter 2019 Men’s Monday Vanier Championship. To see their winning team picture before it is uploaded to the website please visit us at www.facebook.com/htbhl and don’t forget to LIKE US!
On our final night of the season, we had the top 4 seeds in action as we had both our Semifinals and Finals taking place. Of the 3 games, 2 were decided by 2 goals or less with all the higher seeds on paper coming away victorious with one Semi needing overtime to determine a winner. There were 2 hat tricks recorded with OC Fabien Milo (4G/3A) putting up the best offensive numbers while teammate OC Brayden Engel (4G/36SH) got the nod as the top keeper. Thanks to everyone that helped make this season possible. We hope you enjoyed the league and will be back in September if we don’t see you on the floor this summer.
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Now on to the recaps:
Wobbly Pops (4) vs Ottawa Cannons (1)
Semi-Finals #1 was a clash of the titans. Two strong, elite teams duking it out in game one. WOP made it to the semis with a double OT win in the quarters while OC took a rest with a hard earned BYE week. OC’s high flying offence was on full display early on. Fabien Milo (4G/3A) played set up man, first setting up Steven Dignard (2G) 3 minutes in, then setting up Vince Bedard in the slot for a one timer to give OC a quick 2-0 lead. The score would hold for nearly 10 minutes. Jason Murfitt (2G/2A) used some good hand-eye coordination to pick off a pass then snipe from the slot. A minute later Milo picked up his third assist setting up a streaking Christian Vandersterre (2G/1A) for his first of 2 in a minute. A minute later OC goalie passed it to Vandersterre who rifled home a slapshot to put OC up 4-1 in the dying minutes of the first half. WOP received a PP very late in the first and Murfitt sniped a goal from half to cut the lead and give WOP some momentum going into the break. Milo’s huge night continued early in the second half, 3 minutes into the half he put OC back up by three. WOP captain Pete Robinson made it 5-3 scoring on a scramble play at the top of the crease. OC then went into another gear that WOP couldn’t match, Milo scored his 2nd and 3rd goals, to make it 7-3. OC’s Julien Delorme then joined in on the action and set up Dignard for his second of the night. A minute later Delorme set up Milo for his 4th and capped off a 4 goal outburst which made it 9-3. WOP would score one late to make it 9-4 at the final buzzer OC easily booked their ticket to the finals awaiting the winner of The Mighty Drunks vs Dino’s game.
OC – Brayden Engel – 36 shots
WOP- Mike Adams – 40 shots
Dino’s (3) vs The Mighty Drunks (2)
Semi-Final #2 – Both teams won convincingly in the quarters and moved on to the tough games now. The winner of this game would take on the power house Ottawa Cannons who won their semi match with a dominant 9-4 win over a strong WOP team. Both teams had pockets of dominant play, but the goalies kept it tied at zeros for nearly 10 minutes. DN broke the scoreless tie with 11 minutes to go. Antonio Otell (2G) found a rebound at the top of the crease and roofed it. The goalies took over once again, and held the score 1-0 until the 3 minute mark. Otell scored his second of the night from the slot to give DN a 2-0 lead heading into the half. The first half ended with some hostilities and they boiled over into the second half. All this did was turn the intensity up and the game speed picked up. Elie El Hage was huge in the DN net making some big saves. This gave DN some space to take chances, and chances they took. Maalouf Elie (2G) made it 3-0 with 14:00 to go scoring on an odd man rush from half. As the intensity picked up so did the frustrations, with both teams toeing the line, but the men in stripes let them play but kept it clean. TMD were chipping away and with just under 10 minutes to go they would finally solve El Hage in the DN net. Tyler Grandy’s (2G/1A) first of the night gave TMD some hope and some life. A few minutes later Corey Agar (2G/2A) set up Geoff Ruggerio who made it 3-2 and put DN on their heels as TMD were mounting a comeback. With under 4 minutes to go and down by 1, Agar put TMD on his back and took over the game. He tied the game with 3:45 to go and at 3:25 he gave his team their first lead. The DN 3-0 lead with 10 minutes to go evaporated in just under 6 minutes. DN pulled their goalie with a minute to go and they used the extra man to get back to even and tie the game 4-4 with 0:45 to go. Time would run out and at the final buzzer both teams sat tied 4-4 and were on the way to sudden death OT. The OT started with both teams having some zone time but nothing too dangerous. With about 2 minutes to go, DN had a gaff, and unfortunately for them it would end up costing them. DN thought there should be a whistle and stopped playing temporarily, they took the ball down the floor but were not able to settle back in, TMD took advantage and took the ball down the floor and Agar played set up man to Grandy who hammered home a one timer from the high slot to give TMD an exciting 5-4 win in over time. TMD booked their ticket to the finals to play the now rested Ottawa Cannons.
TMD - Mathieu Gauthier - 27 shots
DN - Elie El Hage – 33 shots
FINALS - The Mighty Drunks (2) vs Ottawa Cannons (1)
Looking at the bench you wouldn’t think it was the league finals. The Cannons had 1 spare due to injury and last minute on call work for two players. Meanwhile TMD just came off an overtime semifinal win. TMD had a full bench and would need all their players in this one. OC would come out running, and it worked out well for them, they scored the opening goal and were able to breath a bit. Julien Delorme opened the scoring with a rebound goal from in close. A minute later TMD tied it up. Tyler Grandy’s (2G) shot went off the Engel’s blocker and found its way in. The game settled and remained 1-1 for nearly 8 minutes. Sam Leger (3G/2A) changed that scoring a nice deflection goal in close. The lead would last 5 minutes until Corey Agar (2G) tied it up. Leger wouldn’t be out done and scored his second of the half with a rebound at the side of the goal. TMD then lit it up and blew the game wide open in the last 3 minutes. Grandy scored a one timer goal from half, Jason Jones scored on a wraparound and Agar scored from half with just 15 seconds to go to make it 5-3 heading into the break. The championship was a close tight game going into the second. OC would need to dig deep to pull out the win, down by 2 and with only 1 spare. OC got a friendly bounce early in the half as Fabien Milo’s shot was originally saved then bounced off some players then got knocked into the net by TMD goalie Mathieu Gauthier who was trying to stop the ball. TMD would hold the 5-4 lead for more then 8 minutes, Leger finished off his hat trick tying it up for OC with 10 minutes to go. 40 seconds later Christian Vandersterre (1G/1A) put OC ahead with a slapshot from his own end. TMD now down 6-5 and shocked began their attempt at a comeback against the shorthanded OC team. Steve Dignard (1G/3A) would have nothing to do with it. His rebound goal with 5 minutes to go put OC up by 2. OC’s short bench needed to rely on Brayden Engel a bit more then they intended to but he was there to bail them out and was a huge factor in the last 5 minutes shutting the door and not giving up much to TMD and controlling the ball as much and often as he could. OC would hold on to take home the inaugural Monday Vanier Men’s Championship with a 7-5 win. They out lasted TMD with just 5 players and worked hard to take it home. Congrats on the great win and the great season! Well done lads!
OC – Brayden Engel – 28 shots
TMD - Mathieu Gauthier – 30 shots