Peewee AA's Finish Undefeated in Round Robin At Ajax Touney, News, PeeWee, AA (Guelph Minor Hockey)

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Peewee AA's Finish Undefeated in Round Robin At Ajax Touney
Submitted By Bruce Schlitt on Saturday, September 7, 2019

The Gryphon Peewee AA’s opened their 2019 – 2020 season by participating in the 5th Annual Break The Ice tournament in Ajax.  The Gryphons finished on top of their division after sporting a perfect 3-0 record in round robin play.

The Gryphs opened their tourney on Friday morning by playing the host Ajax Knights.  A goal late in the third was the difference as Guelph earned a 3-2 victory.  Ajax opened the scoring 7:44 into the opening period and led 1-0 after one period of play.  Guelph finally got on the scoreboard with 4:22 left in the second period.  Zach McKnight picked up a turnover in the neutral zone and broke into the Ajax zone on a two on one with Tyler Chadwick.   McKnight fed Chadwick with a perfect pass for a break on net and Tyler made no mistake as he snapped the puck in the top corner to tie the game at one apiece.  

Ajax took a 2-1 lead with 10:10 remaining in the game.   With 7:19 remaining,  Zac McKnight poked in a rebound off an Adam Smith shot to tie the game at two apiece.  Then with just 2:47 remaining, Oscar Johnson fed Evan VanEkykeren who split the Ajax defense and fired a shot on goal.  While falling to his knees, VanEykeren corralled his own rebound and slide it home into the open net to give Guelph the win.  Alex Driscoll was solid in his Gryphon debut to pick up the victory in net.

On Friday evening, Guelph took to the ice against the Oakville Rangers Red.   Guelph opened the scoring with 3:33 remaining in the first period when Ryder Burns took a pass from Oscar Johnson in the slot and snapped the puck thru a crowd into the back of the net.   The score stood 1-0 in favour of Guelph after one period of play.

Oakville tied the game 2:21 into the second.   At the 3:50 mark of the period, the Gryphons went on the powerplay.  49 seconds later,  Guelph worked the puck around the zone smartly, resulting in a Zach McKnight drive on net.   While the shot was stopped,  Olan Norton snuck out from behind the net to stuff in the rebound before Oakville could react to give the Gryphons a 2-1 lead after two periods of play.  With 9:53 left in the game, Guelph struck once again on the powerplay as Kyle Assmann snapped a bullet from the point that bulged the twine to give Guelph a 3-1 lead.  Tanner Bothwell drew the assist.   However Oakville answered back just over a minute later close the gap to one with 8:38 remaining in the contest.  While Guelph struggled at times to hold off the big, aggressive Rangers squad, goaltender Ale Gruosso shut the door to prevent the tying goal from crossing the line.   The clock wound down and Guelph escaped with a narrow 3-2 win to end the first day with a 2-0 record.

Saturday morning was a battle between the two undefeated teams of the tournament as the Gryphons squared off against the Oshawa Generals.    Guelph showed lots of hustle and heads up puck movement on route to a convincing 5-0 victory.  Guelph got on the board with 2:33 left in the first as Nathan Boyle hacked and whacked at the puck in a battle in front of the Oshawa net and was finally able to push it across the line to give Guelph a 1-0 lead after one period of play.   57 seconds into the second period,  Matthew Stam forced a turnover behind the Oshawa net and Boyle quickly did a wrap around to stuff the puck past the surprised Oshawa netminder.   Then 3:33 into the period, Tanner Bothwell increased the lead as he banged in a Nathan Boyle shot to make the score 3-0 after two periods of play.   Nathan Schlitt also assisted on the play.  1:33 into the third,  Zach McKnight fed Kyle Assmann back at the point and Assmann smoked his second goal of the tourney into the back of the Oshawa net.  Then with 5:09 remaining, Boyle completed his hat trick off another scramble in front.   Matthew Stam and Evan VanEykeren drew assists on the play.   Alex Driscoll picked up the shut out in between the pipes.

With a 3-0 record, the Gryphons have received a bye to Sunday morning’s semi finals where they will face the winner of the Oakville / Ajax quarter final game
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Printed from on Sunday, September 15, 2019 at 8:50 PM