Monday’s Game in Charlestown, saw the raiders take on the Flyers B in the recreational division. In the second game hosted in Charlestown, the Blackrock Whalers ‘A’ took on the Dundalk Bulls ‘B’ (Reigning Champions). Another new change to the league is the addition of a new ladies team, The Cubs who had their debut match against the Blackhawks.
Flyers ‘B’ vs. Raiders
This game was quite tense from the onset, yet as the match progressed, the play began to open up but it was the Flyers that struck first. Amie McCabe provided the assist for Alan McEvoy to slot home and give the Flyers a perfect start. Both teams took a lot of penalties, but the Flyers did well to kill a 5 on 3 power play. The game became end to end with Sean Pepper making some great saves to keep a clean sheet. On one occasion, he made a brilliant save by reaching behind him to stop the puck on the line. At the other end, Igars Zutis came up big when the Flyers put the pressure on.
The Flyers sealed the game with only a few minutes to go as the puck fell kindly to Mark Pepper who eventually put it away to end the match
First Star: Sean Pepper (Flyers) – Excellent Shutout.
Second Star: Alan McEvoy (Flyers) – Game winning goal.
Third Star: Igars Zutis (Raiders) – Kept team in game.
Final Score: Flyers 2 – 0 Raiders.
Whalers vs. Bulls ‘B’
A new look Whalers team took on the reigning champions, in what would be the best match of the season so far. From the start, the Whalers showed themselves to be the dominant side. The media favourites by far, the Whalers scored first with a great goal on the power play. Lukasz Pasich of the Whalers scored a goal just over the blocker side of the goalie, Sean Pepper. The highlight of the night was soon to come as Stephen Hayes picked up the puck short-handed, charged up the right wing only to beat three Bulls. One of the defenders fell trying to stop him, yet Hayes powered on and leapt over the fallen defender, waiting until the last moment to round the final defender and put the puck between Sean Pepper’s legs. It was a goal worthy of the travel down to Dublin. The Whalers then became complacent as the Bulls began to take a stand in the game. Andy Milum scored a slap shot through a partial screen from the point making the score 2 – 1.
Sean Pepper pulled off some great saves to keep his team in the game, yet even his efforts weren’t enough as David Dunne scored a goal by winning the face off with the help of Blaine Rennicks. Dunne then took a misconduct at the end of the game, but held on for a win.
First Star: Stephen Hayes (Whalers) – Driving Force
Second Star: Andy Milum (Bulls) – Great Goal
Third Star: David Dunne (Whalers) – Sealed Game with Goal
Final Score: Whalers 3 – 1 Bulls ‘B’
Cubs vs. Blackhawks
The last game of the opening weekend saw the Cubs taking on the Blackhawks. After a close contest early on, Rebekah Burke stood on her head making save after save, a trend that would continue throughout the game. The Blackhawks put shot after shot on net and eventually broke the deadlock when Oscars put the puck top shelf, putting the Blackhawks ahead. Lanusbergs put them two up and Stagelovics tacked on a third before the end of the period. At the beginning of the second however the Cubs picked up their first goal with Gabi Vlanskova finishing off a power-play assisted by Jana Grekena. The Blackhawks tacked on 5 more goals however and ended up running out 8-1 winners.
First Star: Rebekah Burke – Outstanding
Second Star: Stagelovics – Impressive goals
Third Star: Vlanskova – Good both ends of the rink
Final Score: Cubs 1 – 8 Blackwaks