Backto-back champs

Up­per Is­land Cove Hawks cap­ture sec­ond straight Ice­berg Cup


What do you get when you com­bine a Yu­gosla­vian bus driver and 15 lo­cal hockey play­ers with a fourhour bus, ferry ride and a sheet of ice?

How about a week­end of mem­o­ries and a cham­pi­onship to boot. Af­ter an in­ter­est­ing bus ex­cur­sion and a short ferry ride from Farewell to Fogo Is­land, the Up­per Is­land Cove Hawks hit the ice on Fri­day evening, Jan. 18 against the host Fogo Is­lan­ders in the first game of the an­nual Ice­berg Cup Recre­ation Hockey Tour­na­ment.

As the de­fend­ing champs from 2012, the Hawks were promised a tougher ride in the 2013 tour­na­ment, which fea­tured five teams from Fogo, Gan­der, Grand Falls and St. John’s.

En­cour­aged by their cheer­ing fans, the Is­lan­ders stayed with the Hawks in the first 25-minute half, trail­ing 3-2 at the break. The Hawks added a cou­ple of quick mark­ers early in the sec­ond half, and held on for a 6-4 vic­tory in the fast-paced opener. Chris Pet­ten led the Hawks at­tack with a hat trick, while Char­lie Deer­ing, Paul Brown, and An­drew “Cy” Babb added sin­gles. Ian Moores chipped in three as­sists.

The tour­na­ment was a home­com­ing of sorts for a cou­ple of Hawks, which had prompted the Jan­uary visit to the is­land re­treat. John Drover was a former teacher at Fogo Is­land Academy, while Randy Rear­don has pa­ter­nal fam­ily roots on Fogo Is­land, trac­ing back a cou­ple of gen­er­a­tions.

Along with some fast-paced hockey, it was a great op­por­tu­nity for the play­ers to make new friends and get reac­quainted with some old friends and fam­ily.

The Hawks had a slow start in Game 2 on Satur­day morn­ing, but were ahead 2-1 at the break against a gritty team from Grand Falls. The team from Cen­tral couldn’t keep pace in the sec­ond half as the Hawks added three more goals in a 5-1 win. Paul Brown car­ried the big stick in, pick­ing up a hat trick, while Michael Adams and Randy Rear­don added sin­gles. John Drover added three as­sists.

The fi­nal round-robin game on Satur­day af­ter­noon saw the Hawks pick up a hard fought 4-2 vic­tory over a St. John’s team which fea­tured former South­ern Shore goal­tender Dennis Lake be­tween the pipes. Mark Reynolds led the way with two goals, while Neil Shute and Shawn Drover added sin­gles. Jonathan Con­nelly added a pair of helpers to keep the Hawks un­beaten streak alive.

With a 3-0 pre­lim­i­nary roundrecord, the Hawks were ranked first over­all in the six-team tour­na­ment, gain­ing a bye to the fi­nal against the win­ner of the semi- fi­nal game be­tween St. John’s and Grand Falls.

In the cham­pi­onship game on Satur­day night in front of 200 lo­cal fans, the Hawks ran into a smooth skat­ing and de­ter­mined team from Grand Falls, a re­match from the 2012 fi­nal. Hawks goal­tender Lee Nose­wor­thy was forced to make a num­ber of out­stand­ing saves in the first half to keep the game score­less and keep the Hawks in the mix.

Pick­ing up the pace in the sec­ond half, the Hawks broke the ice with about 15 min­utes re­main­ing when Matthew “Walt” His­cock blocked a shot on his own blue­line and skated in alone to score on a nifty fore­hand deke. With the tide slowly shift­ing, the Hawks added an in­surance marker with eight min­utes to play when Scott Adams fired a low shot from the slot through a Shawn Drover screen on a pass from Ian Moores.

The Hawks clinched the ti­tle with a well-earned 2-0 vic­tory and cap­tured the 2013 Ice­berg Cup, named in me­mory of Thomas and Emma Penton.

If all goes well, the Hawks hope to re­turn to Fogo Is­land in 2014 to de­fend their ti­tle, much to the de­light of the host or­ga­niz­ing com­mit­tee. With a 1.75 goals against av­er­age, four wins and a shut out, goal­keeper Lee Nose­wor­thy was se­lected team MVP for the sec­ond straight year.

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