After our disappointing early exit from the Division 1 age group at NARCh (See previous post), we returned two days later for the Men’s Platinum division. The roster remained the same except for the loss of one player and the addition of another former IW employee Michael Chaloupka. Our first game faced us off against a team called NCR and proved that the two days off did not help as we lost 6-4. The rest of our games had us playing against International teams: The Revision Predators (Alberta, Canada), La Escuela De Hockey (Colombia, South America) and Mission–Bauer France (France, Obviously).
In our second game against the Revision Predators, we really stepped up our game and took them down 10-2. Ryan Burrows led the team with 5 goals, followed by IW former employee Brian Costello with 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists) and IW’s Chris Kumata with 4 points (3 goals, 1 assist). In the lead up to the third game, we didn’t know how to feel about the upcoming game. Their name was La Escuela de Hockey which translates to The School of Hockey or The Hockey School which, I’m not going to lie, is kind of intimidating. Also, they beat the team that we lost to, yet lost to the team that we beat. Anyways, we played against the Colombians and soundly put them away 7-1.
The fourth game against Mission-Bauer France went as well as the last two games. They didn’t put up much of a struggle and gave up early as we beat them 9-1. The three immense victories put us in 3rd seed going into the playoffs facing off against the 6th seed, the LA Clippers (nope, not the basketball team). The next morning, we faced off against them and we exchanged a few goals until we put up a two goal lead (4-2) and they pulled their goalie with a minute left. A little tussle broke out in front of the net after some pushing and shoving with Mike Chaloupka out in front of the net. The only result was that the other player got tossed out of the game and the resulting power play helped us finish them off.
Our next game was the semifinal. Our previous games proved to us that this was our division and we should be able to easily finish the next two games and take home the trophy. We then faced off against Pama Platinum… The game could be summarized as a very close game, but most definitely ours… until five minutes left. We were up 3-1 and got scored on to make it a 3-2 game. With 1 minute remaining they pulled their goalie and began their 5 on 4 play. We held them off for 45 seconds and we had the puck heading over the half-court line. We then dumped it on net, narrowly missing and their defenseman went and retrieved the puck. He looked at the scoreboard and saw that it showed a little under 2 seconds left. So, from the low dots he fired the puck on net and somehow through screens and bounces, found it’s way into the back of the net… With 0.3 seconds left… Unbelievable…
2 minutes into overtime, they receive a breakaway through a lapse in defense and score ending our final run… We did receive bronze medals though for 3rd place. We’ll be back next year. Also, congratulations to Brian Costello who received the Top Scorer Award for a little over a 2.2 PPG average!
Stay tuned for our a preview of the new Alkali equipment!