The South Dundas “Pizza Hut” Atom B Rep Lions moved up in the standings Saturday night, with a 3-2 win against their division rival NGS Braves.
The Braves entered the game in the East Division’s third place, one point ahead of the Lions. The home team, however was looking to move ahead.
The Braves opened the scoring late in the first period on a goal by Makenna Brownlee when Lions goaltender Brendan Shaver got a piece of the puck, that trickled over the line before he could reach back and save it.
The Lions played a strong first period.
Jack Connors who made his season debut on the blue line adjusted early. Connors was able to create a few scoring chances by keeping the puck alive at the offensive blue line and getting his strong shot through to the net.
In the second period, the teams battled hard and the Braves poured on the shots, but Shaver made several key saves to keep the score, 1-0.
The Lions jumped on the offense late in the period when Joshua Broad, playing centre on line with Jaeden Phifer-Shaver and (call up) T.J. Barnhart, won a defensive zone draw to start an offensive attack.
Phifer-Shaver skated the puck out of his end and into the Braves zone. As he crossed the blue-line, he looked to make a pass, but instead wristed a shot low on the glove side to beat the Braves goaltender and tie the game 1-1.
Momentum shifted to the Lions in the third. On a power-play, Ben Lapier, Nolan Henry and Owen Fetterly were able to sustain the pressure.
When a Braves defender attempted to clear the puck, Fetterly knocked it down and quickly get it to Lapier.
Lapier faked a shot and then slid it across to a wide open Nolan Henry whose on-ice shot slid into the net for a 2-1 Lions lead.
The Braves found themselves in more penalty trouble later as a check to the head resulted in a four minute Lions power play which began with the line of Brody Fairbairn, Duncan Hutt and Kieran Geurkink who pressed in the attacking zone for the two goal lead.
After a line change on the fly, centreman Ben Lapier stole the puck off the left wing boards, skated into the slot and buried a shot behind the Braves goaltender for a 3-1 Lions lead.
The Braves battled back and scored one, but the Lions defense core of Nathen Verhey, Emytt Fetterly and Jayden Rowe kept the Lion’s den clear of Braves, to secure the 3-2 win.
The South Dundas “Pizza Hut” Atom B Rep Lions have a busy schedule to round out their regular season. They are next in action at home on Thursday, January 31st at 7 p.m. against the West Division Brockville Braves.