BRAMPTON, ON – This Thanksgiving Day in Brampton was destined to be a great matchup between two longtime competitors. Adding to that was the fact this was a school day game, and the place was packed with excited kids. The question is if the Beast would extend their winning streak to six or would the Wings stop their losing streak at three games.
Game 17: vs. Kalamazoo Wings
Even before the game started, even before the seats were half filled, the Powerade Centre was filled with the exciting noise of kids. They eventually cranked up the sound so much that the center-ice camera vibrated.
As for the teams, both teams were coming into this Thanksgiving Day game at an even .500 record on the season, with the Beast having played five more games than the Wings. This contest started with Joel Martin and Marcus Hogberg in net for the Wings and Beast respectively. Martin has had a lot of success versus the Beast over the last four seasons.
The Beast started their second line with Scott Jacklin, Kevin Dufour and Stefan Fournier on forward and Reggie Traccitto and Mike Folkes on defense. The Wings put out the Lane Scheidl and Kyle Bushee line, both of whom have been known to cause the Beast trouble in the past, especially when Martin is in net. The Wings came out of the gate strong and put the first eight shots on net before the Beast responded with one of their own. This would be a trend that would continue through the rest of the game. Every time the beast got into the Wings zone, the play would get broken up before they shot to take action back to Hogberg.
At the halfway mark, the Beast got the first power play as Tyler Biggs was sent off for a two-minute penalty after putting his stick in Brandon MacLean’s face. While the Beast got some shots on net during the power play, none got past Martin. Once that penalty was over, the familiar end-to-end play started up as the Beast tried to set the tempo. After a very fast-paced first 15 minutes, the final five minutes of play in the period slowed right down. Danny Moynihan opened the scoring for the Wings as he popped the water bottle behind Hogberg late in the first period. Alex Foster tried everything he could do to get that puck into the net, but the Wings defense was solid in the entire first period. Jackson Leef got his own high-sticking penalty with just under 30 seconds left in the period so that the Beast would start the second period down a man. At the end of the period, the Wings had one goal on 17 shots, while the Beast were scoreless with only eight shots on net.
Undaunted, the Beast came out to play in the second period, looking to get their first goal, even with being a man down. After a pretty good killing of the Leef penalty, the Beast came out of the box and had a nice breakaway chance that Martin easily handled. A short time later, the Beast penalty kill was tested again as Willie Corrin got two for hooking. The Beast turned things up and got several scoring chances as they seemed to stun the Wings, even though the Beast were the ones short a man. At 7:08 into the second period Chris Leveille tied the game at one each, as he buried the puck in the open net on a pass from Corrin and Brandon Marino. The Wings had focused on Corrin and Marino attacking that they failed to cover Leveille and he made the Wings pay for that lapse. It is worth noting that the Beast were pushing hard in the Wings zone – with a man down – when Taylor tripped MacLean. With 2:29 left in the second, Leef scored his first ECHL goal as he tipped in the shot from Eric Ylitalo who took the shot off a pass from Matt Petgrave. With the Beast up 2-1, the period would come to a close with the Beast mostly attacking for a third goal. At the end of the period, the Wings had not scored on 16 shots, while the Beast had two goals off a better 11 shots on net.
The best way to describe the third period is that it was a chippy period with the Beast trying to hold the lead more often than trying to get the next goal. Marino became a target by the Wings and yet the only penalty of the period was called on Sean O’Rourke when he was called for hooking someone other than Marino. While the Beast managed to get off five shots on net during that power play, they could not put the game away with the required third goal. With 1:15 left on the clock, Scheidl finally buried a nice pass from Taylor and Bushee to tie the game. At the end of the period, the Wings had a single goal on 16 shots, while the Beast had no goals off a game-best 14 shots on net.
Off they went to a five minute 3-on-3 overtime that seemed destined to end in a shootout. The Beast came out strong dominating the first two minutes, as they got three shots on Martin, and the play was retained in the Wings end. Finally, the Wings broke it out of their end, and Bushee seemed slated to end the game for the Wings with their first shot on net in overtime, which Hogberg blocked wide of the net. The play again went end-to-end as each team got some shots and then the other team got some shots. At one point, Leveille got the clean breakaway chance, but Martin made the save on a fantastic play. Marino took the puck down to the other end, went in front of Martin and scored the goal on a backhanded shot with 16.4 seconds left. Beast won 2-1 in overtime.
Some Fun or Interesting Facts:
- Out of the six penalties called, none were for slashing for the first time this season in a Beast game.
- In the ultimate tit-for-tat reffing, both teams got matching hooking, high-sticking, and tripping penalties
- Coach Colin Chaulk played five forwards to start the Beast power plays
- Scheidl led the Wings with eight shots on net
- Scheidl scored the tying goal, while Bushee got assists on both Wings goals
- Beast are on their first six-game winning streak this season
Score: Wings 2 – Beast 3 F/OT
Shots: Wings 55 – Beast 39 –
Penalties: Wings 3 – Beast 3
Wings goals scored by Moynihan (1) and Scheidl (1).
Beast goals scored by Leef (1), Leveille (1) and Marino (1).
- Hogberg (BRM) 53 saves
- Marino (BRM) game-winning goal
- Ylitalo (BRM) 1a