Reid Stieler

Admirals play well during busy stretch

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Admirals have been busy as of late and the results have been mostly positive.

After a 3-1 win over Petrolia Dec. 30, the Admirals went to Wheatley last Wednesday night and picked up a 5-2 victory. Dean DeLuca had two goals for Amherstburg while Travis Campbell, Cory Burns and Max Clifford also scored.

The only blemish over the weekend was a 5-2 loss in Lakeshore Friday night. Austin Jennings and Reid Steiler had the Amherstburg goals. The Admirals bounced back on the weekend at home with a pair of wins, starting with a 5-4 win Saturday night versus Blenheim. Caleb Paquette,Jennings, Josh DiCarlo, Amilio Acampora and Stieler scored for the Admirals but coach Paul Bortignon said they didn’t end the game they way they wanted, as they allowed three goals late in the game.

Amherstburg’s Josh Talerico (24, blue jersey) and Bryce McGregor (18) look for a scoring chance during Sunday’s 2-1 win over Dresden.

Jared Ratko played well Saturday night for the Admirals but Bortignon said his teammates “left him out to dry” late in that game.

The Admirals bounced back Sunday night with a solid 2-1 win over Dresden. Clifford and Josh Talerico got the Amherstburg goals. Dresden thought they tied it with 1:26 to play but the officials waved the goal off after it was ruled to be directed in with a glove.

“That’s a big win for us. We took three of four over the week,” said Bortignon after Sunday night’s game. “Friday night was tough but we bounced back (Saturday) night. Tonight, we battled hard and that’s nice to see. We were down bodies but the key was our depth.”

Bortignon said the win over Dresden was a “great effort” and that started with goalie Ben Larder and spread throughout the entire lineup.

Amherstburg’s Christian McBride tries to put one home during the Admirals’ 3-1 win over Dresden Dec. 30.

The Admirals are part of an outdoor series of games this Saturday as they play the Wallaceburg Lakers at Lanspeary Park in Windsor starting at 1:45 p.m. Bortignon said it was a good idea by the league to showcase itself. Bortignon said they don’t know what to expect in an outdoor game but “I think our guys will have fun with it.”

Other games at Lanspeary Park include Petrolia battling Lakeshore Friday night at 7:30 p.m. and Wheatley playing Blenheim at 5 p.m. Saturday, after the Admirals-Lakers game.

The Admirals return home Sunday night to host the Wheatley Sharks at 7 p.m.

Admirals thump Blenheim 7-2

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Admirals erupted for four goals in the second period Sunday night and used that to propel themselves to a 7-2 win over the Blenheim Blades.

The Admirals got first period goals from Reid Stieler and Josh Talerico but the Blades would tie it before the period ended. Travis Campbell, Kyle Meloche, Cory Burns and Stieler would score in the second to allow the home team to pull away before Amilio Acampora netted a third period goal.

Amherstburg’s Christian McBride (27) handles the puck in the corner as he is being watched by Blenheim’s Cam Wheeler (6).

Amherstburg scored seven goals on only 23 shots while Blenheim fired 38 at Admirals’ goalie Ben Larder.

The win improved the Admirals’ record to 13-5-0-3, good for 29 points. They are now 8-1-0-1 at the Libro Centre.

Stieler felt good about his two-goal effort, saying “obviously it’s nice to get some recognition and get some goals” but he noted he is more of a defensive defenseman.

“I think we came out really strong which is something we’ve been lacking lately,” he said

The Admirals let their foot off the gas in the last half of the first period but Stieler said they were re-energized in the second period.

“We kind of shut them down,” he said. “We dealt with the stuff they were doing and shut them down.”

Cory Burns (9) scores a second period goal Sunday night at the Libro Centre. Burns’ goal was one of four second period goals in a 7-2 Admirals’ win.

The Admirals don’t play again until next Sunday when they return to home ice for a 7 p.m. game against the defending PJHL Stobbs Division champion Lakeshore Canadiens. Stieler said it will be nice to get some rest after a tough stretch of games, allow some players to heal some injuries and get some practice time in.

Amherstburg lost their only other game last week, a 5-4 overtime decision in Petrolia last Thursday night. The Admirals trailed 4-2 after two periods but Cory Burns forced overtime with a pair of goals in the third period. Matt Hunt scored the winner 5:04 into overtime for the Flyers. Austin Jennings and Broden Meloche had second period goals that night for Amherstburg.

General Amherst has two all-stars, one playing in showcase game

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs boys hockey team features two WECSSAA all-stars and one of those players is also advancing to play in the Pro Hockey Life Showcase Series.

Brock Beaudoin, a second team WECSSAA all-star, will represent General Amherst in the showcase game tonight at the Libro Centre with the game getting underway at 6 p.m. The game is designed to let high school players get additional exposure to scouts from higher levels of hockey, such as Jr. B or Jr. C.

“I was surprised,” said Beaudoin. “I’m pretty excited about it.”

Pat Garrett, head coach of the Bulldogs hockey team, said it’s a good opportunity for Beaudoin, describing him as “a physical goal scorer.”

“I like to lay the body out there,” said Beaudoin.

Beaudoin hopes to play either Jr. C or midget major hockey next season.

Reid Stieler (left) and Brock Beaudoin of the General Amherst Bulldogs boys hockey team were both WECSSAA all-stars with Stieler being named to the first team and Beaudoing to the second team. Beaudoin will play in the May 10 Pro Hockey Life Showcase Series game at the Libro Centre starting at 6 p.m.

Reid Stieler (left) and Brock Beaudoin of the General Amherst Bulldogs boys hockey team were both WECSSAA all-stars with Stieler being named to the first team and Beaudoing to the second team. Beaudoin will play in the May 10 Pro Hockey Life Showcase Series game at the Libro Centre starting at 6 p.m.

“It’s a huge honour to have Brock selected to the showcase game,” added Garrett. “The fact that it’s at home is a nice touch for Brock.”

Also competing in the showcase game are two Villanova players – Chris Francia and Cole Welsh.

Reid Stieler was also recognized recently as he is a first-team WECSSAA all-star.

“Obviously, I’m honoured about it,” Stieler said of his all-star selection. “It’s a great feeling to be recognized.”

This is the second year in a row that Stieler has been named a first-team WECSSAA all-star. He hopes to join a Jr. C club next year, possibly the Integrity Amherstburg Admirals, or play for the Amherstburg Stars midget major team.

Bulldogs lose in WECSSAA finals in three games

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs pushed the Belle River Nobles to the limit in the WECSSAA “AA” boys hockey final but could get no further.

The third and deciding game was played Monday afternoon at the Atlas Tube Centre in Lakeshore with the Nobles winning the best-of-three series and the championship with a 4-0 victory.

General Amherst’s Max Clifford flips the puck into the Belle River zone during the third and deciding game of the WECSSAA Tier 1 hockey final Monday afternoon at the Atlas Tube Centre in Lakeshore. Belle River won the game 4-0 to win the title.

General Amherst’s Max Clifford flips the puck into the Belle River zone during the third and deciding game of the WECSSAA Tier 1 hockey final Monday afternoon at the Atlas Tube Centre in Lakeshore. Belle River won the game 4-0 to win the title.

“It was a good hockey game for two periods,” said Bulldogs’ head coach Pat Garrett.

A shorthanded goal that made it 2-0 for Belle River seemed to take the Bulldogs off their game for a bit but the wheels came off for the Bulldogs in the third period. Garrett said they tried sneaking a player behind the Nobles’ defense to generate some offense but that led to two-on-ones the other way, which proved costly.

“For lack of a better term, it got away from us,” he said, referring to the third period.

Garrett, who coached the team this season with Joe Shaw, said they were proud of the players and the effort they put forth.

“The tough part about championship games is someone has got to win and someone has got to lose,” he said.

Ethan Hamelin had a “phenomenal” game Monday afternoon with Garrett adding that Reid Stieler, Jacob Fields and Stefan Dobrich playing a ton of minutes on defense.

The two teams had split games last week to send the game to the deciding third game with Belle River winning last Tuesday 2-0 on their home ice and the Bulldogs tying the series with a 5-4 overtime win at the Libro Centre last Thursday afternoon. Hamelin scored the overtime winner last Thursday with Josh DiCarlo adding two goals and Dobrich and Nathan Lenson adding singles.

General Amherst celebrates Ethan Hamelin’s overtime goal last Thursday at the Libro Centre. The 5-4 win forced Monday’s Game 3.

General Amherst celebrates Ethan Hamelin’s overtime goal last Thursday at the Libro Centre. The 5-4 win forced Monday’s Game 3.

Garrett said goalie Will Bratt played well in that game. He added they had their chances in the first game but just couldn’t find a way to score despite outshooting the Nobles.

“We wanted to take it in regulation but any win is good,” Stieler said after the second game. “We’ve got to keep our energy for three periods. We finally proved we can take it to them.”

Garrett said Monday that they only lose one player to graduation and perhaps two or three more to junior hockey. The rest are eligible to return, leading him to believe the future is bright for the Bulldogs.

“That’s a good core of kids in there,” he said Monday, gesturing towards the Amherst dressing room. “I enjoyed coming to the rink and coaching them.”
Despite a 3-6-3 record in the regular season, Garrett stood by his belief they were better than that and noted they played without key players particularly early in the season. He said they had a good run when they got to the playoffs.

“It was a fun ride,” Garrett concluded.

 

Bulldogs advance in boys hockey playoffs

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs have advanced in the WECSSAA playoffs after winning on the road Thursday afternoon.

The boys hockey team won 6-3 over the St. Joseph Lasers in a one-game knockout playoff game at the WFCU Centre. After the Lasers took a 1-0 lead after one period, the Bulldogs exploded for five second period goals.

Stefan Dobrich got the first Bulldog goal with Reid Stieler, Max Clifford, Isaac Hammond and Brock Beaudoin scoring before the second period was finished.

Beaudoin added his second goal of the game in the third period.

Brayden Mayco scored twice for St. Joseph with Carter Comeau scoring the other goal.

The General Amherst Bulldogs boys hockey team  celebrates following a 6-3 win over St. Joseph last Thursday.

The General Amherst Bulldogs boys hockey team
celebrates following a 6-3 win over St. Joseph last Thursday.

“We didn’t have a good start. We were finding our own way,” said Amherst captain Reid Stieler. “We woke up in the second period. We got the puck in deep and threw the body.”

Stieler said they started putting pucks at the net and that enabled the Bulldogs to get a couple of “garbage goals” because of it.

The Bulldogs are undefeated in their last four games, dating back to the regular season, and Stieler said it is a good time to start playing well.

“Obviously, it’s a good time to get things together at the start of the playoffs,” he said.

The Bulldogs play this week in a best-of-three series with the Kingsville Cavaliers and Stieler thinks they have a shot. The Bulldogs tied the Cavaliers 3-3 Feb. 6.

“We feel confident going into the series,” said Stieler, after Thursday’s game.

Amherst head coach Pat Garrett said “it was a difficult year in terms of standings,” as the Bulldogs finished the regular season with a 3-6-3. Garrett noted the Bulldogs were missing key players during various points of the season but have had full lineups the last four games.

“It’s nice to have everyone in the lineup,” said Garrett, following Thursday’s game.

Garrett said St. Joseph is a good hockey team but his team worked hard, finished their checks and were relentless. He added that he always believed the Bulldogs were a better team than their record indicated.

As for the Kingsville series, “I feel optimistic about it, I really do,” said Garrett.

“It’s a good time to start playing well,” he added.

The goalies are playing strong and the Bulldogs are getting goals from different players, he added.

(UPDATE – The Bulldogs won Tuesday against Kingsville 6-2. They host the Cavaliers in Game 2 Thursday at 2:30 p.m.)