The South Dundas “Pizza Hut” Atom B Rep Lions were defeated in their opener here on Saturday night at the hands of the visiting NGS Braves. The Lions who were 1-2-1 in exhibition play coming off a win last week against South Stormont couldn’t survive the offensive pressure of the Braves, 5-1.
With the score 2-1 Braves half way through the third period, the Lions looked to tie the game up but were set back on their heels by the Braves offense.
The Lions gave up three goals in just over a minute to put the game away.
Braves forward Barret Rutters completed his hat trick with goals eight seconds apart, one on a passing play and the other one on a break from centre.
The Braves forwards drove the net and isolated the Lions defenceman allowing forwards to find themselves wide open and able to get their passes through on consecutive plays.
Lions goaltender Brendan Shaver was strong throughout the game and made lots of keys saves early, but with the score 1-1 in the second period and the Lions on the power play, Braves forward M. Brownlee broke down the Lions wing and wristed a shot off the post and off Shavers left pad into the net to give the Braves the lead.
The Lions tried to respond later in the period when Jack Connors received a pass from Owen Fetterly and skated freely into the Braves zone before wristing a shot over the net.
In the first period, the Lions came out strong and carried the play grabbing an early lead on a line change.
Jayden Rowe and Jaeden Phifer-Shaver got caught up on the bench and the puck hit Phifer-Shaver. Ben Lapier picked it up and stick handled across the ice into the Braves end to beat both defenceman before putting a move on the Braves goalie to open him so he could slide home a backhand shot through the five hole.
Later in the game Lapier broke down the right wing and send a cross ice pass onto the stick of Joshua Broad, but he was robbed as the Braves goaltender Tyson Zollinger stuck out his right pad.
Defenceman pairing of Dana Domanko and Emytt Fetterly and Nathen Verhey and Kieran Geurkink continued to improve their defensive play and were able to get some shots at the Braves netminder to create scoring chances for the Lions forwards.
Brody Fairbairn and Duncan Hutt teamed up on one play to get Fairbairn open in the slot before he slid a shot pass the right leg and post.
Nolan Henry was the defensive forward of the game as he continued his strong back checking while creating offensive chances.
The South Dundas “Pizza Hut” Atom B Rep Lions will face the Char-lan Rebels here on Thursday night at 7pm, as they look for their first points of the season. Come out and support your Lions!