Slugfest leads to suspensions

Break it up, again! – Midway through the second period of their December 10th match up, the Morrisburg Jr. C Lions and the Papineau Vikings were more interested in fighting each other than for the puck. (The Leader/Blancher photos)

MORRISBURG – It was a game that the Morrisburg Jr. C Lions would likely want a Mulligan on. The team faced off against the Papineau Vikings in their sole game of the week on December 10th at the Morrisburg Arena.

The Vikings hit the scoreboard late in the first period, scoring two goals three minutes apart to take a 2-0 lead.

Five minutes into the second period, the Vikings went up 3-0 when Justin Labrosse sent the puck past Lions goalie Justin Lalonde. Lions assistant captain Zack Leblanc was sent to the penalty box for cross checking, which put the Vikings on their third power play of the night so far. A minute into the advantage, Papineau scored their fourth of the night.

With the Lions trailing the Vikings 4-0 midway through the period, the game went into the weeds. Several minor skirmishes on the ice between the two teams kept the officials on their toes. At one point in the second period, each team had three players cooling their heels in their respective penalty boxes.

Full house

The situation did not improve in the third period. Less than 30 seconds into the final frame, Papineau extended their lead to 5-0. They would score twice more in the period. One positive for Morrisburg was that six out of the seven goals scored by Papineau were at even strength. The Lions were successful on the penalty kill.

After the Vikings sixth goal, the Lions substituted goalies, with Dean Gauvreau replacing Lalonde between the pipes.

The end of the game was a mess for both sides with players trading the ice for the squared circle. There was only 18 seconds left in the game when Aaron Smith (Lions) and Michael Paradis (Vikings) were bounced for fighting.

The main event occurred at the final buzzer when four Morrisburg players (Jordan Smail, Thomas Ouderkirk, Gauvreau and Landry exchanged blows against a similar number of players from the Vikings in Morrisburg’s end of the ice. This included that team’s goalie who crossed the ice to join in. Smail received a double game misconduct in the brawl.

“Situations of this kind are taken very seriously by the NCJHL,” league president Ian McRae told The Leader. “There were 8 fighting majors called and players will be suspended as per discipline code of the League.”

Ouderkirk and Landry each received a one game suspension issued by the league December 12th. Smail, who also is the captain of the Lions team received a four game suspension, two games for instigating, and one each for fighting. Papineau players Jacob Osborne, Danny Plourde-Grenon and Pascal Leblanc each received a one game suspension in the ruling.

The Lions host the Metcalfe Jets at the Morrisburg Arena December 16th. They visit Papineau the following day for a rematch against the Vikings.