CRAIG SCHROTER Special to The Standard
The Lindsay Muskies and Markham Royals played a game on Friday night that had fans on the edge of their seats all night long, but in the end, it was an all too familiar result, as two late Markham goals resulted in an 8-5 win for the Royals.
The game got off to a rough start for the Fish, as Markham’s Lucas Condotta redirected a point shot past Blake Curran in the Lindsay net, just 1:24, into the game. The goal was assisted by Jonathan Pransjak and Jack Jeffers. The Royals, Bain Cunningham increased the lead to 2-0, at 7:41, on a shot from in close. The lone assist went to Braedyn Aubin.
The Muskies got back into the game though, before the first period ended, when Owen Barnett finished a nice solo rush, for his first of the year at 16:44.
The second started much better for the Muskies, when Braydon Leeking tied the game at 2-2, tapping the puck in past Alexander Bishop, after a nice set up from Clay Coles. The other assist on the goal at 5:16, went to Taylor Bidon. It did not take long though for Markham to regain the lead, as Condotta scored his second of the game, at 7:32, from Jeffers. A Royals power play saw Aubin score, at 12:42, to restore the two goal cushion, with the helpers going to Jeffers and Zach Sheedy.
Just 51 seconds into the final period, Ryan Smith got the back within one, as he finished a nice two on one, with Ethan Ramsden. Cam Robinson had the second assist on that goal, but again the Royals answered right back, when Jeffers scored at 1:27, from Brett Ouderkirk and Jacob Culley.
Things went from bad to worse for Lindsay, when Ouderkirk scored at 7:46, to make it 6-3 from Condotta. Midway through the third though, the Royals were handed two minor penalties simultaneously, giving Lindsay a 5 on 3 power play. The Muskies power play has struggled this year, but they got it right at this point, scoring twice to climb back within a goal.
First it was Leeking’s second of the game, as he fired in a point shot at 10:42, set up by Brendan Tomilson and Noah Dollo. 21 seconds later, it was Brock Traill firing a slap shot past Bishop from Leeking, making the score 6-5. At that point, the Markham coach called his time out, to settle the team down. The Muskies kept coming on strong, but a giveaway, in the Lindsay zone at 16:56, saw Ouderkirk wind up with a wide open goal, to give Markham back their two goal lead, and that was the end of Lindsay’s comeback. J.T. Entelisano added an empty net goal from Culley to round out the scoring.
After the game. Braydon Leeking said it felt good to be back the lineup, after being out for about three weeks and to get two goals and an assist. As well, Owen Barnett, who has taken most of the red paint off the goal posts this year, said, it felt nice to finally get one. Both players agreed, despite the team’s record, the team remains upbeat, as they keep getting chances, but just don’t seem to get the right bounce at the right time.
Head Coach, Dan West did not share the players good feeling after the game, saying, that in his mind some players were not prepared to play tonight. “We played a slopp and lazy game tonight”, he remarked. “We score a few goals finally, and then feel that we can take a shift off”.
The next game for the Muskies is Sunday night in Pickering.
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