It took three games, but Friday night (February 22) the South Dundas Bantam B Rep Lions finished off the NGS Braves with a 2-0 victory and are now preparing to meet Alexandria in Upper Canada Minor Hockey second round playoff action.
The series kicks off tonight, Wednesday, February 27 in Alexandria. Game time is 7:30 p.m. Game two of the four-point series is set for Monday, March 4 at 8 p.m. in Morrisburg, and game three, if necessary, returns to Alexandria, Thursday, March 7.
The Lions got off to a good start against the NGS Braves with a 7-3 victory on home ice last Tuesday, February 19. Then on Wednesday night, they were on the snowy road to Maxville where they were hoping to wrap up the four point series, but the Braves battled back with a 5-2 win to force a third match.
That was played Friday night in Morrisburg, with the Lions claiming the game win, 2-0, and the series win, four points to two.
Friday night, Lions goaltender Christian Francis was unbeatable as the Lions went to work on the win.
It was late in the first period that Drew Minish goal got it rolling, unassisted.
From then on, the hometown fans were on the edge of their seats as the Lions worked to hold onto their slim advantage and try to add to it.
That didn’t happen until the end of the game when Matthew Woolsey shot the puck in the empty Braves net for the 2-0 win.
Assisting on the Woolsey goal were Josh Perry and Vincent Baron-Renaud.
In the series opener in Morrisburg on February 19, the Lions were forced to come from behind as they worked their way to the 7-3 victory.
The Braves went up 2-0 in the first period on a pair of goals by Owen Bourgeois.
Early into the second period, Riley Black put the Lions on the board with help from Ben Michels and Aaron Smith.
They collected another two goals in the second period while the Braves counted one, to make it 3-3 heading into the third period.
Aaron Smith (assisted by Callahan Bilmer) and Riley Black (assisted by Quinn Bennis and Smith) counted the Lions second period goals.
Then in the third, Francis shut down the Braves shooters while the Lions went to work for four unanswered tallies and the 7-3 win.
Drew Minish led the third period charge with three goals, and Koltin Merkley counted a single.
Riley Black assisted on two of the goals and single helpers were provided by Smith, Quinn Bennis, Elese St. Louis and Michels.