DAN CEARNS, The Standard
SCUGOG: The Port Perry Lumberjacks opened their pre-season hockey action with a loss in a close game against the Orillia Terriers, on Wednesday, August 31st. Showcasing a mix of returning players and potential new additions to the roster, the LumberJacks started a new era, with players wearing the new logo at Scugog Arena for the first time since the name changed from MoJacks to Lumberjacks. Just 36 seconds in, the Terriers scored in their first shot on goaltender Damien Daniels. Then, with about three and a half minutes remaining in the period, Daniels came out to play the puck, but the Terriers player got there first and was able to shovel the puck into an unguarded net for a 2-0 score. About five and a half minutes into the second period, the Terriers added to their lead with a goal. But, nearly 14 minutes into the frame, Damian Bridgett was able to take a breakaway pass from Greg Soomre, at the opposing blueline, and deke the puck past the Terriers’ goalie, cutting the deficit to 3-1. Then, over halfway through the third period, with the Lumberjacks on the power play, Jeremy Poulin banked a puck off the left goalpost and into the net, making it a 3-2 game. But, the Terriers would add an empty net goal, and the Lumberjacks fell by a score of 4-2. After the game, new head coach David Ayres provided his thoughts on the team’s performance. “[It was a] slow start for us, but as the game went on, I thought we got better. In the third period, we played well, and it showed.” He also discussed what he wants this team’s identity to be, when they open the regular season later this month. “Hard work. These guys are going to work hard, [and] they’re going to make teams pay for their mistakes. That’s what we’re looking for.” The LumberJacks will be heading to Alliston this weekend, for a few final pre-season tune-up games, facing Hespeler, Penetang and Alliston. They will open the regular season on Friday, September 16th, in Uxbridge, against the Bruins.