A Hurricane of hockey games
In six days the Tillsonburg Hurricanes Jr A Hockey Club saw six games. Included in those recent games was a back-toback against division-leading St. George Ravens.
The first of the six saw Tillsonburg host the Tottenham Steam where the Hurricanes took a 7-2 victory, then the Canes had the Ravens ‘In at the Bunker’ (Tillsonburg Kinsmen Memorial Arena) just 24 hours later. With a depleted bench due to injuries and suspensions, the Canes performed excellent but were defeated 7-6 with some suspect officiating.
Just 17 hours later the Canes would make their way to St.George to play the first-place Ravens with only 10 men. The result was a 1-0 defeat for the Hurricanes, again with some very suspect officiating.
“I’m very proud of each of these guys that had the guts to suit up against a very strong team and put in the performance not only on Friday, but Saturday and Sunday,” said GM and head coach Jason Dopaco. “As well, Sunday, I have never seen young men put themselves through so much adversity and still be in the game.
“This is a special group of players, right from the get go it has been a family.”
The Canes then took a much needed day off and got back to work at practice Tuesday and Wednesday.
Last Friday night saw the Niagara on the Lake Nationals visit ‘your hometown Tillsonburg Hurricanes.’ The Canes took an early lead but the Nationals would not quit and pushed the low-manned Canes deep into the third period. The Nationals led 5-4 going into the final three minutes when France native Louis Rabelle managed to redirect a puck in down-low. Just a minute-and-ahalf later newcomer to the Canes Ivan Subbotin stole a puck at the opposing blue line and found Dallas Routh for a short breakaway to score the game winner.
The Hurricanes were then on the road to play the Northumberland Stars. The Canes had some bus trouble along the way getting them to the rink very close to game time. The Canes were slow and lackluster in this performance and the effects of injury and suspension had fatigue setting in. Tillsonburg fell 7-5 to the Stars.
With a four-hour bus ride home and a lot to think about, the Canes were back in action 16 hours later. The Canes made their way to North York to play the Toronto Predators. With Griffin Sinden and Riley Ellis returning to the lineup, the Canes seemed to have a lot of jump coming out strong after the terrible performance just 16 hours earlier. Ivan Bondarenko and Sinden immediately got to work along with Routh, Clayton Hilker, and a strong offensive game for seasoned veteran Kam Wilson.
“What a roller coaster weekend, we were down in the bodies department again but managed to pull four outta six points this weekend,” said Dopaco. “It’s good, just not great. I do recognize that we are tired and down bodies.
“We have added a new player, Ivan Subbotin, which we picked up from the New Tecumseth Civics. We also have Dmitri Selyutin coming in Monday who will add to already strong offensive punch.”
The Greater Metro Jr. A Hockey League released their players of the month seeing Tillsonburg Hurricanes’ assistant captain, No. 49 Ivan Bondarenko, win Forward of the Month with 41 goals and 31 assists on the season for 72 points in 14 games.
Next Canes home game will be Friday, Nov. 9 against the London Lakers. Warmup starts at 7 p.m., puck drop at 7:30 p.m. Come out and support your local Junior hockey team.