Amherstburg Admirals

Admirals fall to first place Dresden in OT

 

 

By Christian Bouchard

 

The Amherstburg Admirals fell short in a 2-1 overtime loss to the first place Dresden Kings this past weekend.

The Admirals got an early lead as Max Clifford scored less than five minutes into the game. That would be the lone goal for Amherstburg.

Jared Ratko helped extend the home shutout streak to 179 minutes but with just 59 seconds remaining in regulation, Nolen Vandenboorn, the league’s leading goal scorer tied the game sending it to overtime. Vandenboorn would score his second of the night and 14th of the season to defeat the Admirals 2-1 in overtime.

Max Clifford (25, left) scores a first period goal less than five minutes into the game versus the Dresden Kings. The Admirals would lose 2-1 in overtime.

“We were missing three key bodies,” said Paul Bortignon, the Admirals head coach and general manager.

The Admirals were without Kyle Meloche after his penalty and fight in the second period led to a game misconduct. Also missing from the lineup was Caleb Paquette, who was unavailable due to a family function, and Travis Campbell.

Despite the loss, Bortignon is happy with the way his team has defended home ice.

“If you’re going to get five of every six points on home ice you’re going to be a happy coach,” said Bortignon. “I think we can build off that. Those are teaching moments for us.”

As of Sunday night, he Admirals are now 4-2-0-1 and have nine points, a feat that took them 11 games to reach last year.

Kyle Meloche (12, left) gets into a tussle with a Dresden player during Sunday’s game at the Libro Centre.

“We know those points are critical especially come playoff time,” added Bortignon. “We’ll take our record now and be happy with it.”

The Admirals next game is Wednesday night in Wallaceburg before returning home Sunday night to host the Mooretown Flags. Sunday night’s game at the Libro Centre starts at 7 p.m.

Admirals pick up wins over Petrolia and Wallaceburg

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Admirals have four wins and two losses on the young PJHL Stobbs Division season with two wins coming over the past week.

The Admirals most recent game was an 8-0 romp over the Wallaceburg Lakers Sunday night at the Libro Centre. Amherstburg overcame a slow start as they led 1-0 after one period on a goal by Cory Burns but were outshot 11-5 in the opening 20 minutes.

In the second period, the Admirals blitzed the Lakers with seven goals with two coming from Caleb Paquette. Michael Hatch, Cole Welsh, Kyle Meloche, Dean DeLuca and Max Clifford also scored for Amherstburg.

Ben Larder picked up the shutout for the Admirals, who have not allowed a goal in their first two home games.

Admirals forward Brett Smith (8) gets a second period scoring chance against Wallaceburg Sept. 30. Amherstburg scored seven second period goals Sunday night en route to an 8-0 victory.

“Obviously we weren’t ready to go in the first period,” said Admirals GM/head coach Paul Bortignon. “I think our vets did a great job after the first period having a chat amongst themselves.”
That chat paid off as Amherstburg scored early and often in the second period en route to the victory.

“The biggest thing about that game is not giving up a goal,” said Bortignon.

Bortignon said while they weren’t engaged in the first period, they were able to play well defensively throughout and was happy with the shutout.

“After the first period, the guys did a great job to regroup,” he said.

Admirals forward Caleb Paquette tries to avoid a collision with Wallaceburg goalie Patrick Timpany all the while being checked by Matt Tourigny during Sunday night’s 8-0 Amherstburg victory. Paquette scored two of the Admirals’ seven second period goals during Sunday night’s Jr. C hockey game.

The Admirals picked up a 4-2 win last Thursday night in Petrolia, with three of the four goals coming on the powerplay. Bortignon said they had other opportunities to score in that game and said goalie Jared Ratko played well.

Petrolia is a tough rink to play in, Bortignon stated, and the Admirals battled hard to get the victory.

“It was a good road win,” said Bortignon.

Amherstburg has now won three straight hockey games after a tough start to the year in which the first three games were on the road. The first of the three wins was against a strong Dresden club, and the Kings will be looking for revenge this Sunday back at the Libro Centre. Bortignon said if the Admirals focus on their defensive play, the offensive will come.

Dean DeLuca (16) brings the puck up the ice during the Admirals’ 8-0 win over the Wallaceburg Lakers Sept. 30 at the Libro Centre.

“The biggest part for us is to focus on the D-zone,” he said.

Sunday’s game against Dresden starts at 7 p.m.

Admirals improve to 2-2 after tough road schedule

 

 

By Christian Bouchard

 

The Amherstburg Admirals split a pair of games over the weekend, improving their record to 2-2.

Amherstburg couldn’t avenge their Game 7 loss in the playoffs to the Mooretown Flags Saturday as they lost 4-2 on the road. The Admirals allowed 40 shots in the loss, an area in which head coach/GM Paul Bortignon said needs to improve.

Defense was the name of the game in the Admirals home opener as they picked up a 5-0 win against an undefeated Dresden in front 614 fans. The Admirals outshot the Kings 40-15 as Ben Larder picked up his first shutout of the season.

Ty Moss celebrates his third period goal versus Dresden in the Admirals home opener. The Admirals defeated the Kings 5-0.

“We gave up 40 shots to Mooretown so to come back the next night against a team that was 4-0 and get four by a goalie like (Dresden’s Brett) Brochu who was playing lights out is huge for us,” said Bortignon.

The offensive was led by captain Austin Jennings who had two goals and an assist in the victory. Other Admirals goals were scored by Ty Moss, Josh Talerico and Christian McBride, who scored his first junior goal of his career.

Despite the offensive explosion, Bortignon said he was more impressed with the team’s effort on defense.

“Whenever you can give up 15 shots or less, that’s going to win you a lot of games,” added Bortignon.

With so much emphasis on defense, Ben Larder said it allowed him to have a great bounce back game.

Kyle Meloche (12, right) goes for a poke check on a Dresden player during Sunday night’s home opener.

“I’m happy with the effort in front of me, the boys helped me out a lot,” said Larder. “They did a great job killing penalties and blocking shots. I’m just trying to keep pucks out of the net. Winning the game is the goal, especially against a team that is 4-0”.

The Admirals hit the road this Thursday night to take on the Petrolia Flyers before returning home on this Sunday night to host the Wallaceburg Lakers. Puck drop for Sunday night’s game is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Libro Centre.

Admirals begin 2018-19 season with 1-1 record

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Admirals are 1-1 to start the 2018-19 PJHL Stobbs Division season.

The local Jr. C hockey team’s most recent game was a 5-2 victory Sunday night in Blenheim. The game was delayed due to a reported hydro loss in Blenheim but once it did, the powerplays for both teams showed they were powerful as the first four goals of the game were scored with the man-advantage.

Austin Jennings made it 2-0 for the Admirals with a goal in the first period and another goal in the second but the Blades tied it on goals by Connor Wright and Brodie Conlon. Ty Moss and Kyle Meloche restored Amherstburg’s two-goal lead before the second period was out.

Moss added his second of the game on a third period powerplay.

The Admirals began the season last Tuesday night with a 6-3 loss in Essex.

Amherstburg’s Christian McBride (white jersey, 27) crashes the net during last Tuesday’s game in Essex.

Bryce Ryan scored for Essex in the first period and it stayed that way until midway through the second when the 73’s expanded their lead to 2-0 on a goal by Dawson Winchester. Ty Moss scored his first Jr. C goal a little over two minutes after Winchester’s first goal of night, but Winchester would strike again shortly after Moss’ goal to give Essex a 3-1 lead.

The 73’s expanded their lead to 5-1 with a pair of goals early in the third period from Curtis Jackson and Quinn Fazekas, the latter on a powerplay, but the Admirals did not quit and scored two of their own as Cory Burns and Caleb Paquette made it a 5-3 game. Paquette’s goal came while the Admirals had a man-advantage of their own.

However, Michael Vieira’s shorthanded empty net goal with just over two minutes left sealed the deal and was the final goal in Essex’s victory.

“Ultimately, they were a cleaner team when it came to the defensive zone,” said Admirals GM/head coach Paul Bortignon after the game against the 73’s. “(Essex goalie) Jax D’Hondt gave them stops when they needed them.”

Dean DeLuca (16) and Broden Meloche battle with Essex players in front of the 73’s goal/

Bortignon said they never want to get down 5-1 in a game but did like how his team responded when they did so in Essex. He said the last 11 minutes of that game was something to build on as they had scoring chances and “our best players were our best players.”

The Admirals’ goal remains to get better every game, he said, and that he was pleased with how the first-year players performed against the 73’s.

“From the standpoint of the first-year players, I thought we did well tonight,” he said. “That was good to see.”

The Admirals are in Mooretown Saturday night before hosting Dresden Sunday at 7 p.m.

Admirals host fifth annual golf tournament

 

 

By Christian Bouchard

 

The Amherstburg Admirals traded in their sticks for clubs as they celebrated their fifth annual Fall Classic golf tournament this past weekend.

Admirals players, coaches, families and friends golfed at Sutton Creek Golf Club on Sunday for the team’s annual fundraiser. Cory Burns and his team won the overall tournament shooting 18 under par and a total of 54 strokes.

While final numbers are not available yet, general manager/head coach Paul Bortignon estimates 13-14 groups participated.

Victoria Hilton goes for the green during the fifth annual Fall Classic golf tournament presented in wet conditions Sunday at Sutton Creek Golf Course in McGregor.

“Aside from the weather, I thought everything went well,” said Bortignon. “We had a ton of support from the community and all the guys had fun”.

Just a few days before their season opener, the Admirals have set the roster to the 23-player limit. He added they are excited about the players they’ve added and with the returning players but stated there wasn’t a lot of time to prepare before the season opener in Essex, which was played Tuesday night after this issue of the River Town Times went to press.

Ty Moss and Dean Deluca were among many of the rookies who Bortignon said would have a lot of impact for the team. He added Andrew Clark, a 2000 player from Windsor, is more than likely going to be the biggest surprise.

“What he brings on the penalty kill, in energy alone, and especially in the face-off circle, I think he’s going to wow some people in the organization this year,” added Bortignon.

Admirals goalie Ben Larder chips one towards the hole.

With the addition of a handful of rookies being added to the roster, the Admirals will rely heavily on veteran presence to lead the team. Now entering his fifth year with the team, Bortignon said he’s thrilled with what he’s seen from his team’s leaders.

“I really think the leadership we have this year with Austin Jennings as our Captain, Travis Campbell, Cory Burns and Caleb Paquette wearing the As, it may be the best leadership we’ve had in five years,” said Bortignon.

Along with players taking on bigger leadership roles, he stressed the importance of taking it one game at a time and trying to get as many points as possible early in the season.

“When you look at the last 30 games last year, we had the best record in the league,” he said. “That still put us in the fourth spot going into playoffs. If you can get one of the top three seeds in the league, that saves you a round of torture in the playoffs. So for us, that’s a huge goal.”

The Admirals concluded the pre-season with a 5-2 win in Wheatley last Friday. The Admirals’ first home game is Sept. 23 against the Dresden Kings at 7 p.m.