DARRYL KNIGHT Special to The Standard
The Port Perry MoJacks made the most of their weekend, posting a 5-3 win in Little Britain on Saturday night, before winter weather wiped out their home affair, on Sunday afternoon, against the North Kawartha Knights.
The Merchants, meanwhile, will be looking to quickly put this weekend behind them, after falling in back-to-back games by identical scores, after the Clarington Eagles soared to a 5-3 win, in ‘The Sports Capital of the Kawarthas’ on Sunday evening.
First period goals by Graham Lamers and Lucas Berkers paced the MoJacks to a 2-0 lead, through 20 minutes in Little Britain on Saturday night. The Merchants would come roaring back in the second period, tying the game on goals from Hayden Long and Nick Thomas, before the MoJacks were able to pull away for good with a three-goal outburst, late in the middle frame. Mitch Gustavsen, Lamers and Ben Sheremeta all scored for Port Perry, with Skyler Andrus chipping in with a third period score for Little Britain, but it was as close as the Shopkeepers would get, with the MoJacks prevailing by a score of 5-3.
On Sunday night, the Merchants were looking to bounce back with the Clarington Eagles in town, for the second half of a back-to-back weekend of Provincial Junior Hockey League (PJHL) action in Little Britain.
Little Britain stormed to an early lead less than three minutes into the action, when Nick Thomakos lit the lamp for the home side, assisted by Derek Risebrough. However, the Eagles would reply with a pair of goals around the middle of the opening stanza, to take a 2-1 lead into the dressing room after 20 minutes of play.
It was a tie game less than five minutes into the middle frame, when Mac West connected on a powerplay goal, assisted by Thomakos. The teams would carry on their see-saw match, throughout the second period, trading goals with a Ryan Shaw score sandwiched, around a pair of Eagles goals as Clarington clung to a 4-3 advantage, heading into the third period.
Clarington goalie Curtis Laviolette would prove to be the difference down the stretch, as the rookie netminder made several sensational saves, while the Merchants overwhelmed the Eagles’ defence throughout the final 20 minutes, peppering Laviolette with 18 shots, outshooting the Eagles by 10 in the final frame, but they couldn’t slip the puck over the line. An empty net goal gave Clarington some breathing room late in the contest, as they escaped with a 5-3 victory, on a snowy evening in Kawartha Lakes.
- With Sunday’s game cancelled, the MoJacks were forced to postpone their annual ‘Wooly Toss’, in support of Operation Scugog. The event will now take place during ‘The Battle of North Durham’, at Scugog Arena on Sunday, Dec. 18th, with the rival Uxbridge Bruins in town for a 2:25 p.m. matinee match-up. Fans are asked to bring winter hats, gloves, mittens or scarves (wrapped in a plastic bag), to be tossed onto the ice when the MoJacks score their first goal of the game. Everything then collected will be staying in the community to help local families stay warm this winter.
- Thomas continues to pile up points since being signed by the Merchants. In 12 games played, the Central Ontario Wolves product from Zephyr has 17 points, having scored in his past four outings.
- This weekend will be another busy one for the Merchants, as they travel to Uxbridge on Friday, Dec. 16th, for a 7:45 p.m. match-up at the Bear Den. On Saturday night, they are back on home ice, hosting the Georgina Ice at 7:30 p.m., wrapping up the weekend with another home game, facing off against North Kawartha, at 8 p.m. on Sunday evening.
- The MoJacks will make the trek to Keswick, on Friday, Dec. 16th, looking to melt the Georgina Ice, with the action getting underway at 7:30 p.m.
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