By Larry Robertson, Special to The News
A pair of back-to-back wins over the Fort Erie Meteors, coupled with a victory in Buffalo, have vaulted the Ancaster Avalanche into third place in the Golden Horseshoe Junior B Hockey Conference.
Last Thursday, a pair of power-play goals by Mike Pollice carried Ancaster to a 4-3 win over the Meteors. Two nights later, Cole Nagy scored a hat trick en court to a 4-2 victory. Earlier in the week against Buffalo, Ancaster edged the Blades 3-2 as Zach Nieminen scored twice.
“These players are still learning to play as a team…it’s a slow process,” said general manager and coach Ryan Kuwabara. “It’s taking them longer than I had expected to play as a team.”
“If they keep doing all the small things, they’ll get their chances to score. As a team, they are getting better in the defensive zone, but it takes a combination of both to make a better hockey team.”
The Fort Erie game was not without its anxious moments. With 29 seconds left in the second period, Ancaster’s Jake Bain hauled down Fort Erie’s Braden Kavaratzis as he raced in on the net. Bain incurred a penalty shot. Kavaratzis drifted in from centre ice and drilled a shot at Ancaster’s newly acquired hometown goaltender Braydon Banitsiotis, who stopped him cold, before the match turned in the Avs favour.
At the next Avalanche home game, Thanks 2 U Thursday, $2 tickets will be offered to all participants and coaches in Ancaster girls and boys minor hockey and Ancaster Figure Skating Club members who wear their team sweaters, jackets, and/or uniforms, or Ancaster Avalanche merchandise.
Thanks 2 U Thursday Oct. 10 is the lead-up to the Thanksgiving weekend, when the Avalanche take on the Caledonia Pro-Fit Corvairs at Firestone Arena. Game time is 7:30 p.m. The following night (Friday), the Avalanche travel to Port Colborne.
Last Saturday in Fort Erie, Ryan Lewis scored the Avs fourth goal as Harrison Domagala set up two of the scoring plays. Also scoring were Luke Zupan and Nagy.
Earlier in the week in Buffalo, Nieminen scored twice with Ryan Lewis adding the other.
For a full schedule, visit www.ancasteravalanche.ca.