SIX NATIONS – The Whitby Warriors brought their best to the ILA to open the best-of-seven OLA Jr. A semi-finals, Monday night and came very close to taking Game #1 at the ILA. But the Arrows Express prevailed in the low scoring 6-5 series opener.
Both goaltenders, Doug Jamieson for Six Nations and Mike DeGirolamo for Whitby, were sensational in making the shooters work for whatever they got. In the end, DeGirolamo made 42 saves on 48 shots and Jamieson turned aside 32 of 37 Warriors shots.
In the other semi-final series, Peterborough went up 1-0 after an 11-7 Peterborough win at the Peterborough Memorial Centre, also on Monday night.
The Arrows Express drew first blood at 4:53 when Jackson Reid scored from Jordan Durston and James Rahe. Dallas John made it 2-0 from Durston and Bendan Bomberry.
But Six Nations seemed to loose focus near the end of the first period when Whitby scored three goals in a minute and a half to end the first 20 minutes ahead of the Minto Cup defending Arrows 3-2.
Austin Staats eventually evened the game at the halfway mark of the second period from Rahe and John. Bryce Yetman restored the Whitby lead at 15:37 before Rahe and Bomberry closed the second period with the Arrows ahead by one 5-4.
Jamieson and DeGirolamo put on a show in the third period frustrating attackers throughout the final 20 minutes. Yetman beat Jamieson to tie the game once again, at 11:38, but with 5:30 remaining, Rahe found the key to DeGirolamo’s cage and scored what would prove to be the game winner.
The Arrows special teams made the difference, making good on three of six odd man advantages while keeping the Warriors powerplay to 0-4.
The series shifted to Whitby Tuesday for Game #2, with Game #3 backed at the ILA, Thursday night, July 23rd, at 8 pm. Game #4 is in Whitby on Saturday with Game #5, if necessary, at Six Nations Sunday, July 26th, at 7 pm. If needed, Game #6 will be in Whitby, Tuesday, July 28 and Game #7 at the ILA, July 30th.