Week 20 Weekend Wrap
Toronto Star Photo
The Exposure Hockey Group’s Paradise Cup turned out to be all it was cracked up to be as 14 of the nation’s top-30 USA Boys 2009 teams competed and crowned champions in three divisions in Clearwater, Fla. Our LiveBarn Featured Game of the Week was a semifinal matchup in the tournament’s Warrior Division between the No. 6 Boston Jr. Terriers and seventh-ranked Pittsburgh Penguins Elite.
Pens Elite came away with the victory in that one in a barnburner only to fall in the championship game to TP3 Hockey out of Massachusetts. No. 18 Florida Alliance and No. 43 Team Maryland also won division chmpionships in Clearwater, Fla.
With hockey fully returning to action in Ontario during the past 10 days, we looked north of the border for our other three Games of the Week. Two of our contests featured top-10 Tier 1 Canada Girls teams competing in the U13 and U15 divisions of the Ottawa Girls Hockey League, while the third was an Ontario Boys U16 AAA Greater Toronto Hockey League matchup, also featuring a pair of top-10 clubs.
One of our Canadian matchups was a No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdown in Canada Girls U15 play, with the second-ranked Durham West Lightning skating to a mild upset by handing the No. 1 Peterborough Ice Kats their first league loss and third overall setback of the year by a 3-0 margin Sunday. Both higher-ranked teams won close games in our other matchups.
Our Featured Game of the Week can be seen on-demand on LiveBarn. Recaps of all four Games of the Week can be found below.
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Video highlights of our Featured Game of the Week can be seen by CLICKING HERE once they are posted and live.
LIVEBARN FEATURED GAME OF THE WEEK
USA Boys 2009
Saturday, Feb. 12 - 4:30 p.m.
#7 Pittsburgh Penguins Elite - 6, Boston Jr. Terriers - 4
Clearwater Ice Arena - Clearwater, Fla.
Pens Elite tallied twice in each period and held off a Jr. Terrier rally in the third frame to earn the semifinal win and advance to the championship game, which they would lose to TP3 Hockey out of Massachusetts, in the Warrior Division of the Paradise Cup event in Florida. Pittsburgh ended up losing its first and last games of the tournament to TP3. Pens Elite opened play by dropping a 4-2 decision to them before beating No. 3 Dallas Stars Elite, 5-3; No. 22 Honeybaked, 5-3; and the No. 8 Mid-Fairfield Stars, 3-2 in overtime. They also tied the 10th-ranked Los Angeles Jr. Kings, 4-4. The Jr. Terriers tied the No. 17 Buffalo Jr. Sabres, 2-2; beat No. 9 Little Caesars, 6-4 and 8-0; beat No. 18 Florida Alliance, 3-2; and fell to No. 3 Dallas, 3-0. Boston concluded the tournament with a 35-10-5 overall record and holding a 195-94 scoring advantage against all opponents. Pens Elite is now 37-20-2 overall and held a 257-167 scoring advantage against its opponents heading into the finals. Nolan Snyder paced all Pittsburgh players in the semifinal victory with three goals and an assist, while Treyton Palocsik and Mark Pape each tallied once. The sixth goal was not recorded on the online scoresheet. Jack Funk, Kolton Kelleher, Brian Whitecross and Kellen Labanara each scored once for the Jr. Terriers.
Ontario Boys U16 AAA
Saturday, February 12 - 1:00 p.m.
#6 North York Rangers - 4, #8 Vaughan Kings - 2
Westwood Arena - Etobicoke, Ontario
The fourth- and sixth-place teams in the Greater Toronto Hockey League faced off as North York entered the game one point behind Vaughan with an 8-6-2 record and 18 points. Thanks to a 4-2 victory, the Rangers leapfrogged the Kings and moved into fifth place with 20 points to Vaughan’s 19. The Kings still have three games in hand, however. North York is tied in points with the fourth-place Markham Majors, but the Rangers have played two more games. The top-ranked Mississauga Senators are in second place with 24 points, one fewer than the third-ranked and first-place Toronto Marlboros. North York is 24-10-1 now, with 132 goals for and 83 goals allowed. The Rangers didn't play from Dec. 14 until Feb. 5 and are 3-1 since returning to action, with the loss coming against Markham. They are 6-1-1 in their last eight outings, including a 2-2 tie against the Marlboros. North York also handed the Kings a 7-2 loss on Nov. 6. Vaughan is 13-6-4 on the season and holds a 71-53 scoring advantage over its foes. The Kings played their first game since Dec. 8 on Feb. 6, skating to a 2-2 tie with the No. 12 Don Mills Flyers. This lost snapped a four-game unbeaten streak for the Kings, who are 10-2-3 in their last 15 outings.
Canada Girls U15 Tier 1
Sunday, February 13 – 7:30 p.m.
#2 Durham West Lightning - 3, #1 Peterborough Ice Kats - 0
Ajax Community Arena - Ajax, Ontario
Durham West handed the Ice Kats their first loss in OWHL play and closed to within four points in the East Division standings at 11-1-0 (22 points). Peterborough has played two more games than the Lightning and is 13-1-0 for 26 points. Both teams have been dominant in league play as the Ice Kats now have outscored their league opponents, 59-13, while Durham West holds a 55-11 scoring advantage in OWHL games. Peterborough is 37-3-0 overall with 158 goals for and 28 goals against. The Ice Kats did not play between Dec. 16 and Feb. 4, but they beat No. 30 Whitby Wolves and No. 21 Belleville Bearcats since returning to play before Sunday’s loss. Another of their losses came against this Durham West team by a by a 3-1 margin Sept. 26, but they also beat the Lightning, 2-1 Sept. 19, and 4-1 Nov. 27. So, the season series now is tied at two games apiece. Peterborough's other setback was a 3-1 loss to the No. 5 North York Storm Dec. 3, and since then they had won nine straight without allowing more than one goal in any of those contests before losing to the Lightning. Sunday’s game marked just the seventh time the Ice Kats have allowed more than one goal, and at one point they posted seven consecutive shutouts. Durham West did not play between Dec. 12 and Feb. 4, but the Lightning have made up for lost time since by going 10-0 with six shutouts since returning to action. Sunday’s win brings their overall record to 36-4-2 and their goal differential to 161 goals for and 46 goals against. Durham West's only losses were to Peterborough in September and November, the No. 4 Nepean Wildcats in October and the No. 5 North York Storm in October. Since the last loss to the Ice Kats, the Lightning have gone 18-0, allowing more than one goal just three times. They have recorded 12 shutouts on the season and allowed more than one goal just 10 times. Peterborough and Durham West meet again Feb. 24.
Canada Girls U13 Tier 1
Sunday, February 13 - 3:45 p.m.
#1 North York Storm - 1, #9 Scarborough Sharks - 0
Paramount Ice Complex - Toronto, Ontario
The storm won another hard-fought battle against the Sharks in this battle of first- and fourth-place teams in the OWHL Central Division. North York is now 12-1-0 in league play with 24 points, good for a 13-point lead over the 5-6-1 Sharks, and has outscored league opponents, 74-11. The Sharks hold a 19-17 scoring edge over their OWHL foes. The Storm are six points ahead of the No. 6 Barrie Sharks and seven in front of the No. 8 Toronto Leaside Wildcats in the OWHL Central standings. North York has won 26 of its 27 games overall this season, only falling to Barrie, 3-2, Dec. 14. The Storm opened the season with 19 straight victories before that setback. Since the loss they have gone 7-0, recording five shutouts and scoring 48 goals in that span. After being off from Dec. 8 until Feb. 5, North York has returned to action by winning all five of its games, including a 5-0 victory over the Wildcats. They have outscored their opponents, 155-19, allowing more than one goal just four times. North York beat the Sharks, 2-0 Oct. 2, and 2-1 Nov. 27. Scarborough is 20-14-3 overall after suffering a pair of 1-0 losses over the weekend and has outscored its opponents, 87-63. The Sharks, who were scheduled to face the Central York Panthers Monday, are 3-4 since returning to play Feb. 3, with the losses coming against teams they are chasing in the standings. They are 7-4 in their last 11 outings.