Tempers flare on the ice, but Corvairs still reign supreme

CALEDONIA ‑ The Caledonia Pro-fit Corvairs cooled down after a nasty 5–4 double OT win Friday night in Niagara Falls, but on Saturday there was still some fire left to pour out on the visiting Welland Canadians, to hold on for the 5–4 regulation time win at the Haldimand County Caledonia Centre.

The Corvairs took a 2–0 first period lead on goals scored by Mitch Graham and Matthew Hore.

Jake Brown and Quentin Maksimovich added two more in the second period before Nathan MacDuff got Welland going late in the period. The third period turned as ugly as it did Friday night with Brayden Crowder and Nick Zotti teeing off on each other with a minute left on the clock. Tait Seguin and Nick Boehmer were the combatants in the second period with all four getting game misconducts and first dibs on the post-game shower.

Graham netted Caledonia’s fifth goal three minutes into the third period but Welland was able to distract the Corvairs long enough to chip away at the 5–1 lead. Steve Farano, Cole Hamilton and Tyler Stranges almost upset the Corvairs apple. Stranges’ goal on a power play and an extra man power play came at 19:46, and the Corvairs were able to protect the lead for the final seconds of the game for the 5–4 win.

Caledonia now carries a record of 36 wins, one loss, one tie, and two OT losses — each worth a point. With 75 points after 40 games played, the Corvairs look ready to make history with their third straight Sutherland Cup win. But anything can happen in the playoffs and Coach Mike Bullard knows that, not allowing his team to relax on any opponent.

This coming weekend, Caledonia will host the Thorold Blackhawks on Saturday night, Jan. 30th, at 7:30 pm.

It took double overtime to break a 4–4 tie game at the Gale Centre Friday night between the Niagara Falls Canucks and the Caledonia Pro-fit Corvairs. But at 4:37 of the second OT period, Corey Pawley put the game away with a 5–4, unassisted marker.

Referees Mike Bolibruck and Geoff Lawson wore out their whistles as the Corvairs were assessed 129 minutes in penalties and 43 minutes to the Canucks.

Pawley also opened the scoring with a power play goal very late in the period assisted by Davis Brown and Nick Zotti.

Matthew Hore connected from Jake Brown at 5:41 of the second, and Captain Tait Seguine made it 3–0 before the Falls’ Thomas Flack scored to end the second period with Caledonia leading 3–1. But the tempers were already starting to boil with Todd Ratchford getting tossed for checking from behind in the first period.

There were three “inciting an opponent” calls, two to Caledonia, as the game began to get out of control.

The third period seemed to last forever and took its toll on the Caledonia bench, with Michael Fitzmorris, Daniel Volpe, Matt McCartney, Jonathan Schaefer and Coach Mike Bullard being thrown out of the game for a variety of offences, including abuse of officials, gross misconducts, and travesty of the game. In total, 27 penalties were called, mostly major offences.

The nasty stuff even followed them into the sudden death overtime periods. Tyler Hill was thrown from the game at 1:28 of the second OT period before Pawley put an end to the hostilities. The serious nature of the penalties will likely result in more severe action by the league brass.

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