Admirals down Belle River in Game 5, can win series Wednesday night at home

 

 

Amherstburg’s Dan Matoski and Blake Rutckyj (blue jerseys) watch the puck hit the back of the net behind Belle River goalie Mitch Topliffe Sunday night.

Amherstburg’s Dan Matoski and Blake Rutckyj (blue jerseys) watch the puck hit the back of the net behind Belle River goalie Mitch Topliffe Sunday night.

By Ron Giofu

 

(UPDATE: The Amherstburg Admirals downed the Belle River Canadiens 5-4 Tuesday night in Belle River to take a 3-2 series lead. With a win Wednesday night – Feb. 12 – the Admirals can advance to the Great Lakes Jr. C semi-finals. A loss would force Game 7 back in Belle River Friday night.)

The Jr. C quarterfinal playoff series between the Amherstburg Admirals and the Belle River Canadiens is going to last at least six games as the two teams were equal at two wins apiece through four games.

The Admirals tied the series Sunday night thanks to a 4-0 win at the Libro Centre. Chad Copeland opened the scoring with 3.3 seconds left in the second period with Brett Beattie, Dan Matoski and Jordan Luciw adding third period goals. That win avenged a 5-1 loss the Admirals suffered Saturday afternoon, a game in which Blake Rutckyj had the only goal for the Admirals.

Goalie Arren Romeril, who made 27 saves in Sunday night’s shutout, said the team came better prepared to play Sunday as opposed to Saturday.

“I think coming off our win Friday night, I think we might have gotten a little full of ourselves,” said Romeril.

In Sunday’s game, he added they were refocused.

“We knew our backs were to the wall and we knew what we had to do,” he said.

Romeril was pulled in the third period of Saturday’s loss with Klinton Kenney finishing the game but Romeril added he didn’t let that bother him.

“I just take it day by day. A win is a win whether it’s 10-9 or 1-0. I just want to get out of this series by winning the next one,” he said.

Copeland’s goal gave the team momentum, he added after Sunday night’s game, but they planned on approaching Tuesday night’s game with the same mindset they had going into Sunday.

Head coach/GM Greg Prymack was clearly more pleased with Sunday’s effort as opposed to the rough one they had the day before.

“We knew we had our backs to the wall and needed a win,” said Prymack. “The kids played their asses off.”

Prymack noted their penalty killing has been playing well, as the Admirals have not allowed a powerplay goal in the last two games.

“Romeril made big saves when he had to,” said Prymack.

The difference in the series will be the team that wants it more, he added.

Game 1 was played last Tuesday at Lakeshore Arena with the Canadiens getting a 3-2 overtime win thanks to a Mike Ditty goal. The Admirals returned the favour in Game 2 with Matoski scoring the overtime winner 6:54 into the extra session.

The fifth game was played last night in Lakeshore after the print edition went to press. Check www.rivertowntimes.com for further updates. Game 6 will be tonight (Wednesday) at the Libro Centre at 8 p.m.

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