DAN CEARNS The Standard
SCUGOG: The Port Perry MoJacks currently hold a two-games-to-one lead on their second round playoff series, against the Uxbridge Bruins.
The two teams opened the series at Scugog Arena, on Wednesday, February 21st. The game didn’t start well for the MoJacks. Just 21 seconds in, the Bruins scored the first goal of the game. The MoJacks had several quality scoring chances in the first period, but just couldn’t put anything past Bruin goalie Ryan McConkey, in the first frame.
But, about five and a half minutes into the second period, on a MoJack power play, Jeff Gauld fired a shot past McConkey, tying the game 1-1. Over two and a half minutes later, Brady Martin tipped the puck past the Bruin goalie, and Port Perry took their first lead of the game.
Dan Harris scored the clinching goal late in the third period, and the MoJacks won the first game of the series 3-1.
The MoJacks continued to roll in Game 2 at Uxbridge Arena, on Friday, February 23rd, winning the game 7-4.
Just like in the first game, the Bruins opened the scoring, putting the puck in the net over eight minutes in the game.
However, just 11 seconds into the second frame, Graham Lamers scored, tying the game 1-1. But, over two minutes in, the Bruins recaptured the lead. About four minutes later, the Bruins, again, put the puck in the net, for a 3-1 lead. The MoJacks pushed back though, with power play goals later on in the period, from Derek Risebrough and Austin Mackie, and the game was tied 3-3 after 40 minutes of play.
Over three and a half minutes into the third period, the Bruins took a 4-3 lead, but over two minutes later, Lamers scored his second goal of the game, knotting the game 4-4. Eight minutes after that, Spencer Robinson put the puck in the net. Just 49 seconds later, Mitch Gustavsen scored, giving Port Perry a 6-4 lead. Adam Turner later scored an empty net goal, and Port Perry won Game 2 by a score of 7-4.
However, the MoJacks struggled in Game 3, held at Scugog Arena, on Sunday, February 25th, against a desperate Bruins squad.
Before the start of the game, Risebrough was recognized, by convenor Liz Basinger, as the PJHL Orr Division’s player of the month, for the month of January.
The game was scoreless until late in the first period. With just one second left on the clock, the Bruins put the puck past MoJacks goaltender Shawn Mabley.
Then, a little over a minute into the second period, the Bruins again lit the lamp, extending their lead to 2-0. Almost three minutes later, the Bruins again extended their lead to 3-0.
After that goal, the MoJacks decided to make a goalie change, sending in Corey Kuypers. The MoJacks responded, as just 25 seconds later, Lamers’ shot squeaked past McConkey, cutting the Bruins’ lead to 3-1.
But, almost 13 minutes in, the Bruins put the puck past Kuypers, giving them a 4-1 lead. Just 32 seconds later, Lamers scored his second goal of the game, and his 14th goal of the playoffs, cutting the Bruins’ lead to 4-2.
But, that was as close as the game would get. The Bruins scored three goals in the third period, and won the game 7-2.
After the game, MoJacks head coach Tom Boyle said he hoped game 3 was a wake up call for the MoJacks players.
“I tried to warn them before the game. [Assistant coach Patrick Jobb] and I spoke to them about being up by two [games], and Game 3 is a key game and we needed to be ready for a big push from Uxbridge, and they had their big push and we didn’t respond,” he said.
With the MoJacks having surrendered the first goal of the game in all three games in this series, Jobb spoke about what the team needs to do to get out to an early lead in the next game.
“They need to come to the rink prepared. That was two or three games in the first series as well, that’s six of seven games where we’ve allowed the first goal. We need to be ready to go from the drop of the puck,” he said.
The two teams played Game 4 of the series at Uxbridge Arena, on Tuesday, Feb. 27th, past The Standard’s press deadline.
Game 5 will be held at Scugog Arena, on Wednesday, February 28th, at 7:25 p.m.
We reserve the right to remove any and all comments for any reason. Comments with swearing will be deleted without exception.