The Rockets’ Launch Pad
by Rob Sadler
North Dundas Rockets General Manager
The North Dundas Rockets had a pair of games this past weekend at home against the Cumberland Bandits on Saturday night, and on the road in Saint-André-Avellin to play the Papineauville Vikings.
Saturday night in Chesterville the Rockets took another short handed squad to the barn in Chesterville and fell victim in a 2 to 1 loss to the Bandits. In an exciting game that saw excellent goaltending from both sides the score knotted at 0 after the first period. The Rockets would open things up in the second period on a slap shot goal by Tanner Barnett (Nick Sourges, Jack Vankessel 19:09). The Bandits tied the score at less then three minutes later on a goal by Aiden Cannell (Alex Lebrecque, Gabriel Cuillerier); and would take the lead when Alexi Latimer (Sam Gaudet, Josh Bourdeau) found the back of the net on a scramble. That would be all the scoring for both sides until Bandits captain Martin Forget found the back of an empty net with 11 seconds remaining, the result a 3 to 1 for North Dundas.
Sunday afternoon 13 Rockets made the trek to Saint-Andre-Avellin where they were on the receiving end of an 8 to 2 loss. Justin Lefebvre and Tom Fingler scored the only two Rockets goals with Jace Legue, Shawn Simms and Connor Roth drawing assists.
As General Manager of the club I was pleased with our effort Saturday night against Cumberland, losing a 2 to 1 game like that under those circumstances is what it is. We’ve hit a rough patch as a team the last two weeks with work schedules and injuries keeping guys out of the lineup, our main goal as a team is simply to get healthy moving forward.
The game on Sunday, without trying to make excuses, was flat out the most one-sided and biased display of officiating I have seen in the 8 years I have been involved in junior hockey; those in attendance at the game will understand. When you get to the rink as a team, and the head official for the game is in the home teams dressing room laughing with your opponent prior to the game, it’s reasonable to assume that could mean trouble. To put it bluntly, as the game wore on it became more of a comedic affair then an officiated game. We had three kids, Connor Roth, Tom Fingler and Brodie Barkley who were hit from behind in that game, and didn’t get one call; while we went to the penalty box 6 times in 13 minutes during the second period. The bottom line is we escaped without further injury or suspension which is a bonus, while the Vikings improved their home record to 14-2 with their only two losses at the hands of the Gatineau-Hull Volants and the Saint-Isidore Eagles.
This weekend the Rockets host the Morrisburg Lions at home on Saturday night in Chesterville, puck drops at 7:30 p.m. and our lineup is looking a little fuller already.
See you at the rink!