Admirals run win streak to four with pair of weekend wins

 

By Ron Giofu

 

It was a successful weekend for Amherstburg’s Jr. C hockey team.

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals won a pair of weekend games as they battle for second place in the Great Lakes Jr. C Hockey League standings. The Admirals (22-10-3-1, 48 points) won Saturday night in Mooretown 3-2 before returning to the Libro Centre Sunday night where they beat Lakeshore 3-1.

The two wins on the weekend have extended Amherstburg’s winning streak to four games.

Admirals’ forward Kasey Basile (22) gets a scoring chance during Sunday night’s game against the Lakeshore Canadiens. Basile didn’t score on the play but Amherstburg did score three goals in a 3-1 victory.

Admirals’ forward Kasey Basile (22) gets a scoring chance during Sunday night’s game against the Lakeshore Canadiens. Basile didn’t score on the play but Amherstburg did score three goals in a 3-1 victory.

Amherstburg goalie Connor Meyerink made 37 saves in Sunday night’s victory. Curtis Prymack opened the scoring early in the second period but Lakeshore’s Colin Sartor tied the game midway through the period.

Two goals two minutes apart in the third period sealed the win for the Admirals with Marshal Laing and Jordan Luciw finding the back of the net.

“It feels pretty good to be in the running for second place,” said Meyerink after Sunday night’s game.

Meyerink gave credit to his teammates but thought he had a good game as well.

“It’s all about the boys,” he said. “I thought I played as good as I can.”

Saturday night’s game in Mooretown saw Broden Meloche open the scoring in the first period only to have Ben Morrison tie it just over a minute later. The Flags took the lead early in the second period on an Alec Segers goal but Travis Campbell tied the game at the 12:12 mark of the period. Caleb Paquette’s goal with just over five minutes to play in the third period proved to be the game winner.

The Admirals fought off two late penalties and came away with the victory.

Admirals head coach Paul Bortignon said the weekend featured “two big wins for us.” He said they had to work hard to win Saturday’s game and admitted the Canadiens were shorthanded in Sunday’s game but “in the third period, we found a way to get a couple by them.”

Amherstburg now hits the road for three straight games, including a matchup this Sunday night in Blenheim. That game could be the one that decides second place as the Admirals and Blades are a point apart in the standings. Bortignon said they can’t overlook Wallaceburg, whom they play Wednesday night, but the game against Blenheim will be a big one.

The road trip concludes Jan. 29 in Lakeshore.

Amherstburg's Ryan Alexander (left) scraps with Lakeshore's Logan Percy during the first period of a game at the Libro Centre Jan. 17. The Admirals won 3-1.

Amherstburg’s Ryan Alexander (left) scraps with Lakeshore’s Logan Percy during the first period of a game at the Libro Centre Jan. 17. The Admirals won 3-1.

Bortignon noted they are playing well defensively, having allowed more than two goals in a game once in their last 11 contests. The Admirals have been playing better in their own end and doing a better job of clearing the net, he said.

The biggest thing they have to work on now is penalties, as the Admirals have been taking more penalties in recent games than they do normally. That will come into greater importance in the game in Blenheim due to the Blades’ strong power play.

“Hopefully it’s a blip in the road,” Bortignon said of the team’s recent penalty trouble.

The next home game for the Admirals is also the team’s final regular season game. It will be played Jan. 31 against the Wheatley Sharks starting at 7 p.m.

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