DARRYL KNIGHT Special to The Standard
NORTH DURHAM: It was another thrilling edition of the ‘Battle of North Durham’ at Scugog Arena, on Sunday, Oct. 16th, as the Port Perry MoJacks staged a dramatic comeback from a three goal deficit, to score a 5-4 victory against the rival Uxbridge Bruins, to extend their season-opening nine-game winning streak alive.
The Bruins struck early in Sunday’s matinee, with Jack Schnalzer, Brady Baker and Damien Heinle giving the visitors a three-goal lead less than ten minutes into the action, before a power play goal from Lucas Berkers got the MoJacks on the board.
The second period saw great chances from both sides, with Cole Murray drawing Port Perry to within one, with just over a minute remaining in the middle stanza.
The MoJacks continued to roll in the third period, tying the game on an early power play goal by Mitch Gustavsen. Almost four minutes after knotting the game, the MoJacks took their first lead, on Konrad Piorkowski’s 8th goal of the season.
However, the home side’s advantage would be short-lived, as Schnalzer fired home his second of the afternoon just 22 seconds later, setting up a furious finish to the action. After seven minutes of tense back-and-forth action, Murray netted his second goal of the game, to again lift the MoJacks into the lead, and would prove to be the winner as Jacob Lebel scored the win in goal for Port Perry, to extend their lead atop the Provincial Junior Hockey League’s (PJHL) Orr Division.
The weekend began on a brighter note for the Bruins, with Uxbridge scoring their second straight win, at the Bear Den on Friday, Oct. 14th, mauling the Clarington Eagles by a score of 3-1.
After falling behind 1-0 through 20 minutes of play, Uxbridge roared back to take the lead in the second period, after a power play strike from Derek Dolan, and Marshall Lockhart’s first goal of the season.
Jake Joosten continued his strong play in the third period for the Bruins, turning aside everything the Eagles through at him in the crease, making 37 saves over the course of the evening. Just over two minutes into the final frame, Jackson Evans’ first-career goal for his hometown Bruins provided Uxbridge with an insurance marker.
Despite high scores in both games over the weekend, the Little Britain Merchants were denied any points in the games against the Georgina Ice and Lakefield Chiefs.
The goals came early and often, in the Merchants’ 8-5 loss to the Ice in Keswick, on Friday night. Jordan Sharpe paced the Little Britain offence with a pair of goals, and singles were credited to Aiden Renouf, Ryan Shaw and Evan Wasylyk.
Back on home ice on Saturday night, the Merchants were done in, by three third-period-goals from Lakefield, as the Chiefs rallied to score a 6-4 victory, with the final goal fired into an empty net.
A pair of goals from Renouf gave Little Britain a two-goal lead, less than eight minutes into the action.
Mac West and Riley Young lit the lamp for the home side in the second, balancing out a pair of goals from Lakefield.
The third period belonged to the Chiefs, as the visitors scored three goals to claw their way back and shoplift two points from the Merchants.
- Both sides will be looking to get back on track, when the Merchants make their first trip of the season to the Bear Den on Friday night, tangling Uxbridge at 7:45 p.m.
- Little Britain will look to put the brakes on Port Perry’s unbeaten start to the PJHL season on Saturday night, with the MoJacks in Little Britain for a 7:30 p.m. tilt.
- The MoJacks will be back on home ice at Scugog Arena, for a 2:25 p.m. matinee against Lakefield.
- Uxbridge will host a rare Tuesday night match-up on Oct. 25, as the Bruins bring the heat against the Georgina Ice in a 7:45 p.m. match-up.
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