DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
Thanksgiving weekend was a time for the Uxbridge Bruins to resume hostilities with their two oldest rivals, the Little Britain Merchants and Port Perry Lumberjacks.
The Bruins would extend their recent winning streak to five games with a 5-3 win over the Merchants on Friday night at the Bear Den before falling 4-1 on Sunday afternoon in Port Perry.
Little Britain entered Friday night’s game with a familiar face behind the bench, former Bruins player and coach Matt Muir, who recently took over coaching duties for the Shopkeepers after the surprising resignation of the former coaching staff.
Uxbridge did not provide a warm welcome to their former bench boss, with Quinn Meek scoring a pair of first period goals to open up a 2-0 advantage. In the second period, Brando Mancia’s first tally of the season extended Uxbridge’s lead to 3-0.
However, the third period saw some signs of life in the visitors, as the two teams engaged in some thrilling end-to-end action that thrilled the almost 400 fans in attendance.
After Jake Rigillo scored to push Uxbridge’s lead to 4-0, the Merchants would finally break up Logan Carter’s shutout bid when Everitt Corneil scored. Ty Roberts would reply shortly afterwards for the Bruins, and the Merchants would add a pair of late goals from Zac Krolicki and Owen Worseley to round out the scoring in a 5-3 Bruins victory.
On Sunday afternoon, the Battle of North Durham resumed with a matinee match-up at Scugog Arena as the Bruins ventured to Port Perry for the first time in the 2023-24 Provincial Junior Hockey League (PJHL) season.
The two arch rivals battled throughout a scoreless first period, with Bruins goalie Andrew Claughton and his Lumberjacks counterpart Gavin Bradt both making several sensational saves.
A pair of Port Perry goals near the midway point of the second period opened a 2-0 advantage for the home side, but the Bruins would respond shortly afterwards with a powerplay goal from Gavin Graham, assisted by Anthony Lamanna and Josh Czalij to cut the lead to 2-1 after 40 minutes of play.
Although the Bruins were able to muster 12 shots on the Port Perry goal in the third period, none of them could find their way to the back of the net, and another two Lumberjacks goals, including an empty net tallied sealed a 4-1 win for the home side.
- Live streaming has resumed in the PJHL with the launch of PJHLtv.ca, which is currently available for a free trial through the website. Eventually all 63 teams from across the province will have their games broadcast through the platform. However, the Bruins will be maintaining their in-house video crew for their popular highlight packages through their Facebook page and YouTube channel.
- This Thursday, Oct. 12, the Bruins are back on the road when they travel to Bowmanville for a 7:25 p.m. game against the Orr Division-leading Clarington Eagles, who are unbeaten through their first eight games of the season.
- The Bruins will be back at the Bear Den on Friday, Oct. 13, looking to scare up a win against the North Kawartha Knights in their 7:45 p.m. tilt.