On the strength of 25 saves from Ben Thorlakson, the Charleswood Hawks defeated the River East Royal Knights 1-0 on Sunday afternoon. Shane Kustra-Nelson scored his third of the season with the helpers going to Shea Gorenstein and Eric McLuckie in the first for what proved to be the game winner. With the win the Hawks maintain their unbeaten in regulation streak at 5 games with Ben Thorlakson decreasing his GAA on the season to a minuscule 1.30 with a save percentage of 0.957.
The 3-0-2 Hawks return to the ice next Friday with their first meeting of 2017-18 against the 1-4-0 Twins. With the puck dropping at 7:30pm over at the Coy – make sure to clear your schedules to join us!
Above: Flag Bearer Kellan Isaac of the Varsity View Falcons.
I think it is fair to say that no one saw this one coming. A season in which your Hawks finished on top of the MMJHL standings after one of the tightest races in League history, then rolling into the semi-finals after completing an opening round sweep of the Riels, came to a quick and abrupt halt at the Eric Coy Arena on Sunday night at the hands of the juggernaut Raiders JHC. We can spend an awful long time discussing and analyzing what went wrong for the Hawks in this series but a wise, bald headed friend of mine once said that in some instances, rather than beat yourself up trying to find the answer to the question “why”, you should just give your opponent credit for being better than you were. Without going into great detail, that comment probably says it all. The Raiders are on a roll and are peaking at the right time. Bottom line, they are playing damn good hockey and will be tough to beat.
For the second consecutive game, there is no scoring summary to report from the Hawk’s side of the game sheet. And yes, you are right, it is very hard to win a game when you don’t score a goal. Raiders demonstrated a balanced attack, scoring a pair of goals in each period. The final score will read Raiders 6 Hawks 0 but unlike the contest on Friday, right from the beginning to the very last whistle, your Hawks battled hard and didn’t quit. At the end of the day, that is all you ever ask or want of them.
Hawks went 0 for 3 on the PP and their PK went 4 for 5. Hawk’s starter, Ben Thorlakson stopped 24 of the 28 shots he faced over the two periods he worked and Ryan Hall came in for relief in the third and made 12 saves on the 14 shots directed his way. Raider tender Ryan Brown turned away 24 Hawk shots to record the shut out. Raiders out shot the Hawks 42 – 24.
I know the season did not end in the manner that a lot of us had envisioned. We didn’t attain our main objective of winning the Championship but when the emotions of defeat get drained from our systems, we will realize we had a pretty decent run. It may have ended earlier than we wanted but no one can take away the good season we just experienced. I am PROUD of each and every one of you!
Above: Hawks fans really step up. Thanks for a great season! The team really appreciate your support!