Guns fired up on the Rockets; reclaim offensive prowess in home opener

At the 2017 home-opening game for the Rockets last Saturday night (from left): Bryden Vankessel; Guy Beliveau; John Cinnamon; Jordan Hodge, Linesmen; and Nicholas Seguin. Courtesy photo the Lions Club Sponsored our new set of Jerseys and we are very appreciative of their support

The Rockets’ Launch Pad

by Rob Sadler
North Dundas Rockets General Manager

The Rockets finally found their offense this past weekend putting 16 total goals on the board in a 9-to-8 loss Friday night against Metcalfe, and an 8-to-2 win Saturday night at the home opener against the Blackburn Hamlet Inferno. We would like to extend our thanks and appreciation to those who came out to support us and the Lions club this past Saturday night in Chesterville, a community based team relies on community support, and we got it, thank you.

Friday nights game in Metcalfe was a high scoring affair which resulted in a 9-to-8 overtime loss. The one positive coming out of the win was that our offense finally came to light. Team Captain Bryden Vankessel lead the way from the back end with 3 goals and 1 assist and overager Chris Marchand lead the way up front with a pair of goals, including a game tying 8th goal with 24 seconds left in the third period to push the match to overtime. Mackay Balaton, Justin lefebvre and Shawn Simms scored the other goals for us. Simms re-entered the game in the third despite a shoulder injury showing a lot of heart to bury the 7th goal of the game for us. Ultimately it would be William Lachepelle scoring the overtime winner for Metcalfe late in the overtime period.

On a side note to Friday night, our management staff would like to acknowledge the officiating crew and it’s director for overturning a call in that game after appeal; that could have led to a serious suspension for one of our players. It is important; for all the criticism officials receive throughout the season, that our team focuses on the positive as well. We trusted the system in appeal, and the league officials showed tremendous integrity in reversing their decision.

Saturday night was the home opener against the Blackburn Inferno with the result being an 8-to-2 win. Leading the way on the score sheet for the Rockets was alternate captain Landon Veenstra who found the back of the net four times while another alternate captain, Brad Stitt, tallied twice. Those six goals, combined with singles from Connor Roth and Mckay Balaton rounded out the 8-to-2 win.

We had good efforts from everyone this weekend in both games. It was great to get the offense going, as GM I felt we could a tough break Friday night but never quit, and certainly didn’t let it carry over into Saturdays game. It’s encouraging to see how hard this team works, it will not give up, which is a great sign early in a season. Myself and the coaching staff are confident in the group we have, and so far that group has us 4-2, good enough for third place in the standings.

Thanks again to the members of the Lions club who came out for the opening picture, and to those who attended the game or check the box score on line.

Next weekend we head to Blackburn Hamlet on Friday to finish a home and home, and on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. we host the South Grenville Rangers at the Chesterville Arena.

Alternate captain Landon Veenstra pots the first one in the Rockets’ 8-2 win over the Blackburn Inferno, Oct. 14, in Chesterville.
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