3/26/07 vs. Enforcers (1-0-0)
This week’s game was against our old friend/foe, the Enforcers, however, this was not the same Enforcers team we’ve faced in the past. They have added some significant offense, in addition to bolstering their defense as well.
We spent the first period fighting off their offensive advances and trying to control play, but the Enforcers were all over us, firing shots from everywhere. Less than a minute in, Josh was already making big saves. Two 2-on-1’s and a big scramble in front lead to some huge saves to stay in the game. Halfway through the period, still knotted at zero, we began what would be a very bad trend on the night – penalties. Our first was for too many men on the ice. While we killed this penalty off, we were wearing ourselves out early on chasing them around in our zone. With just over a minute remaining in the period, we then took our second penalty – again, for too many men on the ice. Aside from these stupid penalties, there was something else that was particularly troubling – our lack of shots. We probably had 3 shots through the entire period. However, despite our anemic offense, we escaped the period 0-0.
That didn’t last long however, as the opening faceoff was brought into our zone down the right side and a perfect pass to the front of the net was tapped home to put us down 1-0, just 28 seconds in. The ensuing faceoff finally gave us some puck possession as Chuck brought the puck deep into their zone. After a number of shots, saves and a couple of faceoffs, less than a minute later, Chuck popped one home to tie the score at one. We finally found a glimmer of offense and for the next few minutes, the play was even. Around the 8-minute mark of the period, Lyle had a shot blocked, which lead to a 3-on-0 heading towards Josh. The first man made a nice drop pass to one of the trailers who fired one into the top corner to put the Enforcers back in the lead. Moments after that, a penalty call, again on us, lead to the Enforcers third goal. A player at the bottom of the left circle fired a shot on goal that Josh got a piece of, but it trickled out of his glove and into the net, just barely crossing the line. Just less than 3 minutes after that, the Enforcers came down on yet another 2-on-1 and the shooter fired a shot into low right corner using the defenseman as a screen. Within a five minute span, we were down 4-1 and still continued to take too many penalties.
The third period saw more of the same, as Josh continued to come up with save after save. We also saw more of the same in the penalty department, as we were called two more times for too many men on the ice. Trying to come from behind is made so much more difficult when you’re killing penalities. After playing defense for the majority of the game, with just over two minutes to go, Chuck fired home his second of the night and third of the season, from the left circle, to cut the deficit to two. Moments later, with 1:40 left on the clock, Tom N. found the net with a backhand for his first goal of the season to cut their lead to one. Before the faceoff, we called a timeout to discuss the scenario, when to pull the goalie and who was coming on for him. With that plan in place, we got the puck into the zone, but not deep enough to get Josh off the ice. The play was turned back up ice, eventually with Josh making a huge save with Just more than a minute to go. However, right after the faceoff, a loose puck squirted to an open man in front who snapped a quick shot over Josh’s right shoulder to ice the game.
Final Score: 3-5 (0-2-0)
Next week, another 1015 game against Gang Green.