Ryan Holzel

Admirals conclude regular season with 11-0 rout of Wallaceburg

By Jonathan Martin

Four Amherstburg Admirals have played their last regular season home game.

Dylan Muzzatti, Ryan Holzel, Ryan Alexander and Dean Patterson are aging out of the league, which means their final playoff season is just over the horizon.

“We’ve all been in the league for quite some time now,” said Muzzatti, who is also the team’s captain. “It’s a pretty sad day for us. We’ll miss the Sunday nights here in Amherstburg, for sure.”

Dylan Muzzatti and Dean Patterson were joined by members of their families for their final regular season home game with the Admirals.

The day wasn’t all bad news for the Admirals, though. Goalie Jared Ratko earned his first career shutout with an 11-0 win over the Wallaceburg Lakers. The game was also head coach and general manager Paul Bortignon’s hundredth career win and saw Caleb Paquette score his hundredth point among the five points he scored on the night. Cory Burns carried the night with five points.

Zack Yott and Alexander each scored twice for the Admirals. Other goals were scored by Carter Comeau, Paquette, Burns, Travis Campbell, Holzel, Austin Jennings and Reid Stieler.

“We wanted the two points to lock up home-ice advantage in the first round,” said Bortignon. “I thought our guys responded well in the first and that just sort of carried over in the second and third.”

Muzzatti said a big part of the team’s synergy came from the knowledge that it was the last time they would play together on home ice.

Ryan Alexander and Ryan Holzel were joined by members of their families for their final regular season home game with the Admirals.

“We were all pretty emotional and I think we all just wanted to put everything into it one last time,” he said. “Now, everything resets. We have to take it game-by-game, day-by-day and understand that from now on (the other teams) are going to be more prepared … both mentally and physically.”

Muzzatti said he believes the Admirals have the players to overcome that obstacle. Bortignon said winning the playoffs, a first for the Admirals, would be sports poetry.

“To go out as champions would be ideal,” he said. “It’s emotional for us. These four guys have … been with us since day one (except for Muzzatti, who joined in year two). If we could go out winning the championship, that would be pretty sweet for them.”

The playoff schedule has not yet been posted.

Admirals pick up wins over Mooretown and Petrolia

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Amherstburg’s Jr. C hockey team picked up all four points that were up for grabs on the weekend, but their coach/GM still sees room for improvement.

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals travelled to Mooretown Saturday night and came away with a 4-3 win but had to have late game heroics by Ryan Holzel in which to do it. After Cory Burns, Josh Talerico and Caleb Paquette scored in the first period to give the Admirals a 3-0 lead, they held it until the third period when Mooretown took advantage of Amherstburg penalty trouble and managed to tie the game.

Amherstburg defenseman Reid Stieler (7, left) battles for the puck with Petrolia’s Trent Jardine Sunday night.

However, Holzel scored with just 3:25 left in regulation time to give Amherstburg the win. Ben Larder stood tall in the Admirals’ net, stopping 46 of 49 shots.

The Admirals returned home Sunday night and hammered the visiting Petrolia Flyers 9-3. Dean Patterson and Paquette each scored twice with Bryce McGregor, Michael Hatch, Broden Meloche, Ryan Alexander and Holzel also scoring for Amherstburg.

Goalie Jared Ratko picked up his first win as an Admiral.

Admirals head coach/GM Paul Bortignon said the coaches want to see a better effort over 60 minutes every night.

“Obviously at this point, we’re fighting for every point,” he said. “It’s good to get the four points.”

Bortignon said the third period in Mooretown wasn’t as good as it should have been but “we fought back to get the win.” Even in the 9-3 win Sunday night, they didn’t play as well in the third period.

“We strung together 40 minutes in some games,” he said.

The Admirals have to do a better job locking down defensively and putting games away, he believed.

Amherstburg continued to make roster moves before the deadline, one of the more recent being the addition of Keegan MacVoy. Bortignon said MacVoy has got Jr. B experience and he helps bolster their blue line even further.

“For us, it was a no brainer to add him to our defense corps,” said Bortignon.

MacVoy said the Admirals were hungry to win these last two games after having lost the previous weekend to Lakeshore and Essex. He said he was happy to join the Admirals.

“I’ve been excited especially for this game,” he said after Sunday’s win over Petrolia in which he had one assist. “I’m excited to play in front of my hometown.”

Amherstburg’s Kyle Meloche (12, left) gets a scoring chance Jan. 14 against Petrolia. Amherstburg won the game 9-3.

MacVoy said they are gearing up to make a run at the PJHL Stobbs Division championship.

“I believe this team can win it all,” he said.

The Admirals (22-10-2-2, 48 points) have to increase their work ethic, MacVoy added, and stay out of the penalty box. He said there is a lot of skill on the Admirals but they have to avoid taking penalties.

The Admirals are in Wallaceburg Wednesday night before returning home to battle Lakeshore Sunday night. They travel to Wheatley to battle the Sharks next Monday night.

Admirals go 1-1-1 over the past week

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals won one, lost one and tied another game over the past week.

The Admirals’ week concluded Sunday night at the Libro Centre where the local Jr. C team tied the Dresden Jr. Kings 2-2. The teams were even at one after one period as Josh Talerico (Amherstburg) and Will Tetzlaff (Dresden) traded goals.

Amherstburg forward Cory Burns (blue jersey) scores on Dresden goalie Brendan Johnston 35 seconds into the second period.

The teams also traded goals in the second period as Cory Burns scored for Amherstburg while Derek Shaw tallied for Dresden. The teams were scoreless in the third period and the three-on-three seven-minute overtime period.

“I thought we were OK,” said Admirals head coach/GM Paul Bortignon. “We still didn’t get that 60-minute effort.”

Bortignon noted the Admirals didn’t score on the powerplay despite having seven opportunities, including a full five-on-three man advantage in the second period. They also went 0-for-6 Friday night in Dresden, a far cry from the powerplay that went 6-for-8 in an 8-2 win in Petrolia last Thursday.

Amherstburg got goals from eight different players in Petrolia, with goal scorers being Jack Hubbell, Bryce McGregor, Carter Comeau, Ryan Alexander, Burns, Luc Warnock, Kadin Ritchie and Kyle Meloche.

The Petrolia game was the first since a hard skating practice after Bortignon said they were outworked in a loss in Wheatley that was reported in the Oct. 11 issue.

Amherstburg’s David Cooke (22, left) battles for the puck with Dresden’s Dayne Davis during the third period Oct. 15.

The first of two games last week against Dresden was on the road and ended in a 5-2 loss. Ryan Holzel and Burns scored 38 seconds apart for the Admirals in the third period. Bortignon said they had a good first period that night and noted all of the goals Dresden has scored against them this season have been from about six-feet from the net.

Bortignon said they have not had the practice time they’ve wanted and have been battling injuries as about six players are out including some lost to injury Sunday night.

“It’s frustrating but you’ve got to move forward with the cards you are dealt,” said Bortignon.

The Admirals (3-5-2-1, nine points) have a full week off as they don’t play again until this Sunday night at home against Essex so that will give them some of the practice time they need. Bortignon did credit goalie Ben Larder for playing well, noting Larder has been “a big time bright spot for us.”

 

Admirals fall 5-2 in Game 1 of championship series with Essex

 

By RTT Staff

The Integrity Amherstburg Admirals came out on the short end of a 5-2 decision in Essex Tuesday night in Game 1 of the Great Lakes Jr. C Hockey League finals.

The 73’s used two goals in a span of 13 seconds in the third period to pull away from the Admirals. Cody Leeming and Max Viselli broke the game open in the third and propelled Essex to the win.

The teams traded goals during the first two periods, with the Admirals scoring the first goal of the series late in the first off the stick of James Brooks. The 73’s tied it just over a minute later when Matt Zelko scored.

Tyler Scott scored 54 seconds into the second period to give Essex a 2-1 lead but Ryan Holzel’s unassisted goal tied it for Amherstburg a short time later. The 73’s had a 3-2 lead after 40 minutes thanks to a goal from Brett Vorshuk.

Amherstburg outshot Essex 28-27 on the night.

Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Thursday night at the Libro Centre. The third game is back in Essex Saturday night with Game 4 being Sunday in Amherstburg. Those games all start at 7 p.m.

The remainder of the series would be played, if necessary, March 15 at Essex (7 p.m.), March 18 in Amherstburg (7:30 p.m.) and March 20 at Essex (2:30 p.m.)