CALEDONIA — After a long wait, the OSBLL playoffs has finally begun. The Ennismore James Gang and Owen Sound game was stopped due to bad floor conditions with 7 minutes remaining. Until that game was officially decided, those seven minutes had to be played to determine who would be playing whom in the playoffs.
After winning that mini-game Friday, the James Gang road into Caledonia for the first game of the playoff series versus the Rivermen, who have been cooling their heals waiting for an opponent.
Right off the faceoff Saturday night in Caledonia, Alex Kedoh Hill put the Rivermen up 1-0 at 34 seconds. Danton Miller and Josh Johnson assisted. Greg Longboat and Rodd Squire followed, both set up by Tom Montour.
Ryan Nolan got the Gang into the game at 7:05, but a minute and a half later, Josh Johnson made it a 4-1 game for the Rivermen, Brock Farmer assisting on the play.
Cory Bomberry got in the act at 9:01 putting Ohsweken up 5-1 before Ennismore struck for the next three goals to make it a one goal deficit at 5-4, but Kedoh Hill closed the period like he started it with 10 seconds remaining in the period and it was 6-4.
Danton Miller opened the second period scoring from Marty Hill and Murray Porter, which the Gang countered at 11:46 to bring the score to 7-5, for the Rivermen.
Six Nations added four quick goals in the last three minutes of the period with Squire’s second of the game, Roger Vyse, Marcus Elvin and Josh Johnsons’ second, Stu Hill and Greg Longboat’s second, scoring with one second on the second period clock for a two period lead of 15-6.
The James Gang whittled away at the Rivermen lead with the only three goals of the third period for the 15-9 final in favour of Six Nations. Johnson led the Rivermen with a seven point game (3G,4A), while Danton Miller (2G,3A), Kedoh Hill and Greg Longboat contributed two goals each. Warren Hill got the win in the Rivermen cage.
Jeff Swift led the James Gang with three goals and four assists.
The James Gang had to find an alternative venue for Game 2 in Peterborough, which was played Sunday afternoon at 2:30.
Six Nations’ Wayne Miller and Stu Hill took the first two goals at 1:31 and 5:61 respectively, before Jeff Swift connected at 7:53 on an Ennismore powerplay. Alex Kedoh Hill scored two goals in rapid succession and it was 4-1.
The Gang did not turn back and countered with two of there own to end the first period with Six Nations holding a 4-3 lead.
Josh Gilray evened the score at 4-4, at 6:33 of the second period. Josh Johnson and Rodd Squire scored 10 second apart to take the lead back. Squire scored again at 12:29 from Tom Montour and goalie Chase Martin.
Ryan McCrory scored the James Gang’s fifth goal of the game but Johnson closed the second period with the 8-5, cushion goal.
The Gang came out quickly for the third and netted one at 29 seconds, scored by Swift, and it was suddenly 8-6.
Greg Longboat threw a bucket of water on any hopes of a James Gang comeback when he scored at I:27, followed by Kyle Smith at 3:06, for the Rivermen to make it 10-6.
Ennismore’s last goal of the night came from Cody Mcmahon at 9:58 and from there on it was all Rivermen with Longboat and Wayne Hill icing the cake for the 12-7 win.
Josh Johnson topped the Six Nations point getters with three goals and two assists.
Game 3 of the series will be played at the Caledonia Arena, Friday, July 28, at 8:30 pm. Should a Game 4 be needed, it will be played at the Caledonia Arena, Saturday, July 29, at Ennismore, while a possible Game 5 would be played at the Caledonia Arena.
The Six Nations Rivermen were impressive in the first two games of their best of five playoff series against the Ennismore James Gang, defeating the Ennismore James Gang 12-7 and 15-9. Game 3 is Friday at the Caledonia Arena at 8:30 pm. Photo by Jim Windle
Rodd Squire Jr. scores one of his two goals for the Six Nations Rivermen who are looking strong and ready to take it all the way. Photo by Jim Windle