Amherstburg Admirals

Town to consider its own surcharge recommendation for Libro Centre

 

By Ron Giofu

Town council has opted to consider its own recommendation for a new surcharge to be assessed to Libro Centre users.

In the process, they spurned a different proposal submitted by the building’s three main user groups – the Amherstburg Minor Hockey Association (AMHA), Skate Amherstburg and the Integrity Amherstburg Admirals.

According to a report from manager of recreation services Rick Daly, “administration proposed a capital surcharge outlined in the user fee bylaw” and “this capital surcharge is set at $6 per rental unit of time for sport facilities and park bookings and $3 per rental unit of time for room rentals.”

That option would see an estimated $25,350 collected in a year, as opposed to the other option, presented Monday night by AMHA president Marc Renaud. That option is estimated at collecting $26,648.

“We believe non-residents should pay more and adult users should pay more,” Renaud told town council. “Kids in sport stay out of court.”

Renaud said the option created by the three major users would require all three principal users to contract ice hours at a minimum100 hours per year. The principal rate user surcharge would have been $4 per hour to all hours rented on all ice surfaces from Sept. 1-April 30 annually and $10 per hour for all pads from May 1-Aug. 31.

For Amherstburg resident users that book ice rentals for a minimum of 12 hours per month would be set at $6 per hour for all pads. Casual non-resident users would pay a surcharge of $13 per hour of ice rentals.

Under the town’s proposal, Renaud said it would translate into a $21.82 cost per AMHA player and $13.50 for every Skate Amherstburg participant. Under the proposal he presented, Renaud said the numbers drop to $14.54 per player in AMHA and $9 per Skate Amherstburg participant.

According to the administrative report: “Administration recommends that Option #1 (the town’s recommendation) be approved as it is the most equitable and easiest to implement. The users would pay into the reserve equally based on rental levels.” The report added that “the fundamental difference in the structure of the reserve in Option 2 (presented by the primary users) is problematic, in that it doesn’t allow the town to deal with global building issues and only ice specific issues. Secondly, it creates inequality, as it doesn’t allow the users who are paying a disproportionate share much representation at the time the replacement is needed. In this case, you would have non-primary users subsidizing the future replacement of infrastructure to the benefit of the primary users.”

Councillor Rick Fryer said he supported the town’s recommendation, believing the $6 surcharge across the board is “fair” and that the people who use the Libro Centre most would pay a greater share of the surcharge.

“I don’t see this being a big issue with the user groups,” said Fryer.

Renaud reiterated his position that adult users should be paying more in order to keep youth in sports.

Councillor Jason Lavigne said he has three children who have played travel hockey and regardless of whether it is children or adults playing, the adults still pay the costs.

“You are kind of wishy-washy here,” Lavigne told Renaud.

Lavigne said the Libro Centre is the envy of the area but there are costs to keep it that way.

“We have to realize it costs money and we’re having issues here,” said Lavigne.

Councillor Leo Meloche believed the user groups’ options were “a burden to the non-primary users” and that the general taxpayers were paying “a pretty good share already” to maintain the Libro Centre. He said he didn’t find the user groups’ option to be unreasonable. Councillor Diane Pouget said “we try to be fair to everybody” and noted Daly’s report where it said the primary users had 54 per cent of the ice time in 2016 but would only pay 38 per cent of the total surcharge under their proposal.

Councillor Joan Courtney noted she has children and grandchildren who play hockey and believed that if a person can play hockey, they can afford to pay a little more. She noted there is money for hats and jackets and that “somehow they find the money” and didn’t believe the surcharge was unreasonable.

“To keep the Libro Centre a great facility, I don’t think it’s too much,” said Courtney.

Admirals extend winning streak to five games

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals winning streak is now at five games after a win in Wheatley Monday night.

The Admirals won 6-3 thanks to two goals from Ryan Alexander and single goals from Bryce McGregor, Josh Talerico, Dylan Muzzatti and Austin Jennings. The win improves Amherstburg’s record to 13-8-2-1, good for 29 points and fourth place in the PJHL Stobbs Division.

Ben Larder had 28 saves Monday night for the Admirals.

Amherstburg’s Travis Campbell (19) gets a scoring chance on Wallaceburg goalie Patrick Timpany during Sunday night’s game at the Libro Centre. Amherstburg defeated the Lakers 8-1.

The Admirals opened the week with a 6-3 win in Blenheim last Thursday night. McGregor led the way with his first Jr. C hat trick. Head coach/GM Paul Bortignon said they played a solid game throughout.

“I thought we controlled most of that game,” he said. “We played well through two periods. In the third period, I thought we executed very well.”

Also scoring for Amherstburg were Alexander, Ryan Holzel and Cory Burns.

The offence kept rolling Sunday night when the Admirals welcomed the last place Wallaceburg Lakers to the Libro Centre. Amherstburg used a six-goal second period to propel them to an 8-1 win. Four of the Admirals’ eight goals came on the powerplay.

Zack Yott and Talerico each scored twice versus the Lakers with McGregor, Jennings, Travis Campbell and Holzel also scoring.

“For the first period, I thought we were a little slow,” said Bortignon. “A lot of what we put to the net in the second period found its way in. A lot of guys contributed tonight.”

Josh Talerico (24) scores a third period goal against Wallaceburg Sunday night.

The turning point, he believed, was a second period five-on-three powerplay in which the Admirals scored twice.

Bortignon said he thought the Admirals’ defense were “pretty solid” and made some adjustments after the first period that paid off in the second and third periods. Despite beating the last place team, Bortignon emphasized that all wins are important in the PJHL’s Stobbs Division.

Goalie Chris Mitre relieved Larder with just over five minutes to go against Wallaceburg and got his first taste of Jr. C experience. Mitre was called up from the Amherstburg Stars juvenile team while Catalin Morin recovers from injury.

The Admirals play a pair of games this weekend, one on the road and one at home. Amherstburg is in Mooretown this Saturday at 7:30 p.m. while Wheatley comes to town Sunday at 7 p.m.

Admirals pick up pair of 4-1 victories over past week

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals won twice last week, each by a score of 4-1.

The most recent of the 4-1 wins was Sunday night at the Libro Centre, when the Admirals knocked off the Petrolia Flyers. Ben Larder made 37 saves in the win with Ryan Alexander, Cory Burns, Luc Warnock and Josh Talerico finding the back of the net for Amherstburg.

Amherstburg’s Ryan Holzel (14, left) gets a scoring chance on Petrolia Flyers’ goalie Riley Collins during the third period of Sunday night’s game. The Admirals downed Petrolia 4-1.

Amherstburg snapped Petrolia’s seven-game winning streak by defeating the Flyers Sunday night.

The other game of the week was last Wednesday night in Wallaceburg. Burns, Dylan Muzzatti and Warnock put Amherstburg up 3-0 after one period with Talerico adding a third period goal in that 4-1 win. Larder made 30 saves against the Lakers.

“We looked at these as must-win games,” Admirals head coach/GM Paul Bortignon. “It was definitely a big week for us and four big points for us.”

Bortignon said the win in Wallaceburg “went as planned” as the Admirals built an early lead and was pleased with Sunday night’s effort against Petrolia as well, noting they snapped the Flyers winning streak.

“I thought we did a good job in the first two periods and getting on (Petrolia’s) D (defense),” said Bortignon.

Bortignon said their intensity seemed to reduce after they built a 4-0 lead but still got a big win.

“In this league, any time you win a game is a big win,” he said.

Cory Burns (9, left) and Ryan Alexander (16, right) celebrate Burns’ second period goal Sunday night.

The Admirals started off the second half of their schedule well, Bortignon added, and will look to continue that Thursday night in Blenheim. The Blades have struggled somewhat this season but picked up a big win on home ice Sunday night against the Lakeshore Canadiens and Bortignon said Amherstburg will have to play hard for 60 minutes Thursday night.

The Admirals (10-8-2-1, 23 points) will host Wallaceburg Sunday night and will travel to Wheatley next Monday night.

In a related note, Ken Manley won an iPad courtesy of a Score-O game sponsored by Storey & Denomme Family Dentistry in the second intermission. Jay Proctor took the shot on Manley’s behalf. It was the third iPad given away this season.

Admirals earn four of six points on weekend

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Two-thirds of the weekend was good for Amherstburg’s Jr. C hockey team but the conclusion to the weekend was something they want to forget.

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals won two of three games over the weekend. They went to Dresden Friday night and won 4-3 in overtime and then defeated the Blenheim Blades 5-2 Saturday night at the Libro Centre.

Their game Sunday night was against the Mooretown Flags and saw the Flags come into Amherstburg and capture a 4-0 victory.

Amherstburg defenseman Austin Jennings (left, 10) carries the puck into the Mooretown zone during third period action Sunday night. At right is Flags’ defenseman Hayden MacDonald (4).

Austin Jennings was the hero last Friday as he tied the game with a powerplay goal early in the third period and won it in overtime for the Admirals. Travis Campbell and Caleb Paquette also scored for Amherstburg while Ben Larder made 41 saves in goal for the Admirals.

Cory Burns scored twice while Josh Talerico, Bryce McGregor and Amilio Acampora scored in Saturday night’s 5-2 win, Acampora’s goal being his first in Jr. C. Larder made 36 saves in that win.

A second period altercation Saturday night that saw defenseman Dean Patterson leave the bench and join in resulted in Patterson and head coach Paul Bortignon being suspended two games each. Assistant coaches Matt Fox and Rob Bondy ran the bench Sunday night.

Bortignon watched Sunday night’s game from the stands and was not impressed with what he saw.

“This weekend, we won two of three games and that’s kind of where it ended,” he said after Sunday’s game. “We can’t talk about the effort (against Mooretown) because there wasn’t one.”

Bortignon said Mooretown controlled Sunday’s game from start to finish, adding the poor performance from the Admirals is something that usually happens once a year and will be quickly be put behind them. While it was the third game in three nights, Bortignon said that is not an excuse as fatigue may cause mental mistakes but the Admirals had a poor effort top to bottom.

“(Mooretown) owned the game for 60 minutes,” he said.

Larder was one of the lone highlights for the Admirals Sunday, as he made 35 saves.

Amherstburg’s Ryan Holzel (14) shoots the puck in the direction of Mooretown goalie Nolan Hakr during the first period of Sunday night’s Jr. C hockey game at the Libro Centre. Mooretown won 4-0.

The effort was much different the first two games of the weekend, Bortignon indicated. He said they worked hard for the entire game Friday night and came out of Dresden with a win, something that is tough to do as the Jr. Kings are 7-1-0-1 on home ice.

Bortignon said “we picked up where we left off” Saturday night and turned in another solid effort in the 5-2 win over Blenheim.

Amherstburg (8-8-2-1, 19 points) travels to Wallaceburg to play the last-place Lakers Wednesday night. Despite a 1-15 record, Bortignon said Wallaceburg is playing better as of late and stated the Admirals will have to put in a full 60 minute effort.

The Admirals return home Sunday for a 7 p.m. game with the Petrolia Flyers.

Admirals clipped by first place Canadiens

 

By Ron Giofu

 

It was a case of “close but no cigar” for Amherstburg’s Jr. C hockey team Friday night.

The Lakeshore Canadiens got a goal from Steven Sartor with just 3:52 left in the third period and that gave the Canadiens a 2-1 win over the Integrity Amherstburg Admirals at the Atlas Tube Centre.

Lakeshore opened the scoring at the 18:11 mark of the first period on a goal by Ameen Fadel but the Admirals tied it thanks to a Travis Campbell powerplay goal 5:41 into the second period.

Ryan Alexander (16, right) makes his way into the Lakeshore zone during third period action Nov. 3 at the Atlas Tube Centre.

“For the most part, we were good with the exception of two shifts,” stated Admirals head coach/GM Paul Bortignon. “Key mistakes led to two goals.”

In a game against the first place Canadiens, mistakes are magnified by 100, Bortignon believed. He said it was a disappointing game in some respects, noting they converted one of five powerplay opportunities.

The first Lakeshore goal was a result of a missed backcheck, said Bortignon, with the second being the result of poor communication on a defensive zone assignment.

Amherstburg’s Caleb Paquette (6, white jersey) gets a scoring chance on Lakeshore goalie Erik Morneau during the third period of last Friday night’s game at the Atlas Tube Centre.

“You can’t make mistakes like that otherwise it ends up in the back of your net as it did tonight,” Bortignon said after Friday night’s game.

The Admirals competed hard and the defensive zone coverage was solid overall, he added. Another positive was the play of goalie Ben Larder, who made 28 saves on the night.

Amherstburg has to do a better job converting offensive opportunities, Bortignon added, saying they’ve lost a number of one-goal games this season including the most recent game in Lakeshore.

“We had plenty of chances to get the win. That’s the frustrating part,” said Bortignon. “We didn’t capitalize on our chances.”

Admirals goalie Ben Larder (1, right) slides to make a save during the third period of last Friday night’s game in Lakeshore.

The Admirals will be working on fundamentals and special teams in practice this week, Bortignon said, as they want to start winning more consistently to get home ice in the first round of the playoffs.

Amherstburg is 6-7-2-1 (15 points) through the first 16 games of the 40-game regular season schedule. They will be busy this weekend with three games in three nights. The Admirals will be in Dresden Friday night before returning home to play Blenheim Saturday and Mooretown Sunday with both home games being at 7 p.m.