SIX NATIONS – It was a classic goaltenders dual at the ILA Saturday night as the visiting Brampton Excelsiors and the defending Mann Cup Champion Six Nations Chiefs did battle producing an abnormally low scoring 4-3 win for the Excelsiors.
On the positive side, Colin Doyle returned to the Chiefs’ lineup after recovery from an injury to score one and assist on another Six Nations goal. But with a number of their players in Denver playing for the Iroquois Nationals, the Chief’s lineup was without the services of Sid Smith, Cody Jamieson, Craig Point, Roger Vyse, Tom Montour, Jeff Shattler and others.
The Excelsiors were also without some their big guns who were playing for Team Canada, but between Chiefs’ goaltender Evan Kirk and Brampton’s Tye Belanger at the other end, they faced a combined 107 shots.
Brampton had better results in the first period with call up, Randy Callaghan and regular Sandy Chapman giving the Excelsiors a 2-0 lead. Six Nations’ Kessler Doolittle made it 2-1 at 7:17 from Jake Crans, but Pat Saunders ended the period with Brampton leading 3-1, two of them powerplay goals.
Kirk and Belanger put on a show in the second period with only one goal scored, that by Brampton’s Brady Heseltire at 8:17 to give the visitors a 4-1 lead with 20 minutes remaining in regulation time.
The Chiefs came on in the third period to make a game of it when Doyle scored at 5:14 from Stephan Keogh and Wayne VanEvery, called up from the Six Nations Rivermen of the Sr. B’s, scored to make it 4-2, with lots of lacrosse left to play.
Call up, Scott Defrancesco, playing in a Chiefs uniform for only the second time this year, found twine at 15:59, but that would be as close as Belanger would let them get and the game ended 4-3 in regulation time.
The Chiefs remain tied for second place with Peterborough, however the Lakers hold a game in hand. They will have to watch behind them as well. KW is four points behind but hold three games in hand over the Chiefs and two over the Lakers.
Brooklin remains solidly in first place with an 11-2 record as of Sunday.
The Chiefs will wait for the rest of the league to catch up in games played while also waiting their Team Iroquois mates to return from Denver. They won’t see action until Sunday when they take on the Redmen, in Brooklin.
Then Wednesday night, July 23, the Redmen come to Six Nations. These could both be pivotal games in moving the Chiefs up the standings into a possible second place position.