by Romano Di Franco
The Nepean Raiders made their way to the Brockville Memorial Centre for their Friday night tilt against the Brockville Braves. Nepean came into this game having won three straight games against the Braves outscoring 11-5 in that span and are hoping to continue the momentum. For the starting goalies, John Gedraitis who was fantastic last week against the Renfrew Wolves got the start for the visiting Raiders. As for the Braves, Edouard Piche got the nod for Brockville.
The goalies were great over the course of the first period until the latter half. The Nepean Raiders got on the board first when Nicolas Papineau was able to put home his 12th goal of the season. Best of all the Nepean Raiders were able to kill of both penalties in that session. By the end of the first period, it was the Raiders who outshot the Braves 8-7.
The Brockville Braves responded in the second period, leveling the score with a goal from Anoushan Mugunthan at 8:15, assisted by Kimani Eccleston. It would be the only goal of the period for the Braves. The end of the middle frame would was marred with violence as Dylan Coyle drilled Bo Doxtator to the ice as John Gedraitis tried to stick up for his teammate. The teams entered the final period with the game tied 1-1, setting the stage for an intense conclusion.
The third period witnessed an explosive offensive surge from the Nepean Raiders, leaving the Brockville Braves struggling to keep up. Joshua Reid ignited the scoring frenzy just 47 seconds into the period with a power-play goal, assisted by Curtiss Sturgeon and Mario Scalise. It was his 12th goal of the season.
The Raiders continued to dominate with three more goals. Oliver Band, Brandon Reinisch, and Dylan Pollock each found the back of the net, securing a resounding 5-1 victory for Nepean. The power-play success was a crucial factor in their triumph, capitalizing on opportunities with efficiency.
Three Stars of the Game:
- Curtiss Sturgeon (Nepean Raiders): Sturgeon’s exceptional performance, with two assists, earned him the first star of the game.
- Nicolas Papineau (Nepean Raiders): Papineau’s goal and assist contributed significantly to the Raiders’ victory, earning him the second star.
- Anoushan Mugunthan (Brockville Braves): Despite being on the losing side, Mugunthan’s goal secured him the third star of the game.
Penalties and Physical Play:
Both teams exhibited physicality throughout the game, resulting in several penalties. The penalty box saw action with boarding, roughing, tripping, and high-sticking calls. The Nepean Raiders managed to effectively kill penalties, showcasing their resilience on the defensive end.
The Nepean Raiders showcased their offensive prowess and ability to capitalize on power-play opportunities, securing a convincing victory over the Brockville Braves. With standout performances from players like Curtiss Sturgeon and Nicolas Papineau, the Raiders demonstrated their depth and skill, leaving fans eagerly anticipating their future matchups.
The Raiders next game will be in a week from now as they travel to the Rockland CIH Arena 1 to visit the Rockland Nationals for a 7:30PM puck drop.