Men’s hockey string together three wins before winter break

Photo by: Brenden Cowan

Fresh off a stinging 6-2 loss to Toronto Metropolitan University on Nov. 24, the men’s hockey team looked to seize an opportunity with games against York University and the University of Guelph on Dec. 1 and 2.

The first game, one at home against York, would be a memorable one, led by a Badger’s hat trick courtesy of Jacob Roach. This comes on the end of an impressive stretch for Roach, who now has six goals on the season.

Roach’s first goal came just over five minutes into the first when he stripped the York forward of the puck at centre, turned into York’s defensive zone and beat the goalie far side from the left circle.

Roach’s goal would hold as the lead for the first period, and though York equalized early in the second, the scoring barrage held out until the third thanks to a number of penalties.

Captain Jared Marino finally changed that with over nine remaining, ripping his seventh of the season past York’s goalie from the high slot on a powerplay.

Upon that powerplay’s conclusion, York almost immediately took another penalty for tripping, setting Roach up for a powerplay goal and his second of the night.

Undeterred by the two powerplay goals against, York started to play even rougher, with one of the York players even being awarded a game misconduct.

York would score in the time shortly after this melee, trimming Brock’s lead to one. With only two and a half minutes remaining and the Lions putting on the pressure, Adam Berg showed some relentless tenacity to beat out an icing and give Roach a look at the empty net to complete the hattrick. Roach’s empty-netter would stand as the night’s final goal, delivering Brock the 4-2 victory.

Without much time to celebrate their win, the Badgers hit the ice again on Friday, this time meeting the Gryphons in Guelph.

Tyler Burnie and Cole Thiessen got the scoring started for the Badgers, putting them up 2-0 in the first period.

In the second, it was Guelph’s turn to respond. Like most Badgers games this season, the physicality and penalties seemed to ramp up in the second. Though Guelph’s first goal would come at even strength five minutes in, their tying marker would come on the powerplay after Brock and Guelph combined for five penalties in under three minutes.

Not much changed in the final frame until Guelph took a late 3-2 lead, one that Brock would tie in less than three minutes and eventually overcome with four minutes remaining, leading 4-3. However, Guelph heroically scored in the final minutes to preserve the tie going into overtime.

Finally, seven minutes through the overtime period, Justin Brack potted Brock’s fifth goal of the night, winning the game 5-4. The win puts the Badgers only one point back of Windsor for first in the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) West Division, though Windsor have a game in hand.

The Badgers next played Guelph again on Sunday in their final game before the winter break. Brock dominated Sunday’s game 7-3 in a dismantling effort. The Badgers’ special teams came to play, scoring three powerplay goals and two shorthanded markers. Tyler Burnie exploded for a hattrick, leading Brock’s special teams effort with a powerplay and a shorthanded goal. With nine goals and 13 points in 10 games, Burnie is sixth in the OUA in points per game.

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