The Morrisburg Junior B Lions righted a couple of wrongs here Sunday afternoon when they downed the visiting St. Lawrence Division’s first place Casselman Vikings, 3-1.
Those wrongs were a 10-2 loss to the Vikings in their barn on Thursday, November 1 and 5-3 loss on Morrisburg ice on Sunday, November 4.
While they didn’t play well in Casselman, the Lions felt they played better than the 10-2 score indicated and back home in Morrisburg, despite the 5-3 loss, they felt they had played well enough to win it.
So this time out there was no question that the Lions do have the stuff needed to win against the Vikings and any other team in their division.
“On Sunday, it was our best team defensive game of the season,” said Lions team manager Kevin Casselman early this week. “It was the result of what Dan (coach Frawley) and Andrew (assistant coach Scott) have been preaching for some time.”
“Mikael (Dion) was solid in net and our five defencemen played very well collectively. The forward units were coming back to help and picked up their defensive responsibilities.”
“It was a great game, because we felt we had played well enough to have won against Casselman the previous Sunday.”
“With the parity in the league, each week brings hope and optimism that a four point weekend can lift a team back into the battle for a playoff position. It is really that close.”
And close indeed. With the stats in after this past weekend, the Casselman Vikings are in the St. Lawrence division’s top spot with a slim two point lead over the Char-Lan Rebels. The Akwesasne Wolves have climbed into third place with 17 points, Alexandria is fourth with 15, the Hawks fifth with 14 and the Lions still at the back of the pack with 10, but climbing.
While a four-point weekend is a must do for the Lions to catch up to the pack, it didn’t happen this past weekend as they got it rolling Friday night in Alexandria with a 4-1 loss.
Again it was a slow start for the Lions who found themselves down 3-0 in the first period.
Michel Lefebvre counted the lone Lions goal, a power play marker, at 6:52 of the second period assisted by Chris Rutley.
Dion was in the Lions net for the loss. The Lions were out shot 37-24 by the Glens in the game that saw eight minors and one misconduct assessed to the Lions and six minors to the Glens along with one double minor and a misconduct.
Sunday, the Lions were waiting in their home den for the Vikings to come to town for a game that remained even through two periods.
The Vikings got their only goal against Dion just 3:40 into the first period while on their power play.
Just over four minutes later, Chris Rutley answered on the Lions power play with help from Grant Cooper and the 1-1 tie lasted until 1:10 of the third period.
It was at 1:10 that Lefebvre and Rutley went to work to assist Sylvester Bzdyl on what would be the winning Lions goal.
With Dion unbeatable and the defense buckling down, the Lions protected their one goal lead until 15:37 of the third when Grant Cooper, with help from Brandon Chaffe and Matt Marcil, beat Vikings goaltender Phillippe Quesnel for the Lions third and final goal.
Dion was outstanding in the Lions net facing 43 Vikings’ shots, while the Lions managed just 26 shots against Quesnel.
The Lions sat out nine minor penalties, one double minor and a 10 minute misconduct while the Vikings handled five minors, a five minute fighting major and a game misconduct.
This weekend, the Lions are scheduled to host the Char-Lan Rebels, Friday night, November 16 at 8 p.m. Sunday, they are on the road to take on the Akwesasne Wolves in a 3 p.m. match.