by Romano Di Franco
NEPEAN, ON – The Raiders opened up their November schedule Wednesday night hosting the Pembroke Lumber Kings. The two teams last faced off against each other in the first game of the CCHL Showcase back on October 9. The Raiders were beaten soundly that night but the Raiders are now playing their best hockey. They have picked up nine points in their last seven games.
The Raiders called up Luke Posthumus from their U18 squad for the game against Pembroke. He has been on fire with 11 goals and 15 assists for a total of 26 points in just nine games played.
Evan Martin (1-4, 5.22 GAA) got the start in goal for Nepean while Reece Proulx (3-1-1-1, 2.26 GAA) was in goal for the Lumber Kings.
For the sixth time in their last eight games, the Raiders opened the scoring. After winning a face-off in the Pembroke zone the puck eventually found Samuel Beaulne at the point. He found an open David Fontaine at the top of the face-off circle. Fontaine was left unchecked and skated in and blasted a shot from the dot that beat Proulx five-hole. It was Fontaine’s first of the season and came on the game’s first shot just thirty-seven seconds in.
Coleman Bennett almost made it 2-0 on a glorious scoring chance off. Owen Hollingsworth started the break-out and found Jeff Taylor. Taylor made a great cross-ice pass just to the left of the Pembroke goal. Bennett made a nifty move but Proulx made an even niftier save to keep it a 1-0 game.
After 20 minutes the Lumber Kings outshot the Raiders 14-4 but the Raiders led where it counted as they held on to a 1-0 lead. All the Lumber Kings had to show for their efforts was three hit-crossbars as Evan Martin kept Pembroke at bay.
The second period was another strange one. This time it was the Raiders who outshot the Lumber Kings 17-10 but it was the Lumber Kings who did the damage. It was Brady Egan who did all of the damage scoring twice. The first on a stretch-pass that turned into a break-away and the second came from a one-timer rocket in the slot.
The Raiders did have multiple quality scoring chances but this time it was Proulx showing why his save percentage coming into the game was an astounding 0.927. The Raiders’ best chances came on the PowerPlay but they could find the back of the net even on a 5-on-3 with Riley Thompson in the box for Hooking and Max Martin joining him for Checking from Behind.
The third period was a free-wheeling one with the two teams trading chances but the two goalies continued their stellar play. With around three minutes left in the period, it was the Pembroke Lumber Kings who would score. When Alex Urbisci pounced on a rebound off a break-away save by Martin. Brady Egan would then ice the game with an empty-netter to complete the hat-trick.
The game ended 4-1 but it was a much closer game than the score would indicate. The story of the game was Reese Proulx giving up a goal on the first shot of the game and then going on to make 34-straight saves to backstop the Lumber Kings to the win.
Brady Egan’s hat-trick gives him 13 on the season and that was enough to nab him first star honours. David Fontaine (1G) was named the game’s second star while Pembroke forward Joe Jordan (2A) was the third star.
Evan Martin who stopped 27 of 30 shots in his first start since October 17 was named the hardest working Raider.
The Raiders have just two games off until their next game. They head to the Ma-Te-Way Activity Center to take on the Renfrew Wolves for a 7:30pm puck-drop.