By: John Mignelli- Assistant Sports Editor
A four-goal third period for the Ryerson Rams (4-1 OUA) was more than enough to dispatch the Brock Badgers (3-3 OUA) 5-1 on October 25 at the Seymour-Hannah Centre, despite a great performance by Badger goaltender Dalton McGrath (Toronto, Ont.).
Brock’s Josh Schram (Paris, Ont) scored at the 46-second mark in the first period but the Badgers would not celebrate another score for the rest of the game. They came close just seconds later following the post-goal face-off but the Ryerson net was dislodged and Brock was denied a goal, which would have been their second before the one minute mark.
Brock was dominant in winning draws one after the other in the first period and their breakout was sharply executed time and time again. McGrath had a superb period making critical saves at times when it looked like he had no chance. A third opportunity arose midway through the first period when Badger forward Kaine Geldart (Kingston, Ont.) was alone in the slot, but the pass intended for him was just out of reach, squandering the scoring chance.
The Rams began to make their mark in the second period when Michael Fine (Toronto, Ont.) tipped in a goal from Jamie Wise’s (Stouffville, Ont.) shot. This was Wise’s first of three points on the night and it came during a very strong phase for the Rams, who agonizingly outplayed the Badgers for the first half of the second period.
Brock went on a power-play about eight minutes into the second period and came excruciatingly close to taking a lead. Matt Abercrombie (Sarnia, Ont.) made a fantastic move to shake three Ryerson skaters and was into the offensive zone by himself. After deking Ryerson goaltender Adam Courchaine (Kanata, Ont.) the puck was left enticingly on the goal line for the trailing Badger Geldart, who failed to pop in the rebound.
Just when Brock seemed to be getting momentum back, they took a goaltender-interference penalty when Schram got tangled up with Courchaine, effectively negating the rest of their own power-play.
Brock’s penalty-kill unit was very strong and McGrath kept his team in position to win by continuing his great first period after the deflection early in the second.
Coming out for the third period, the Badgers were very stingy defensively and laid multiple big hits on Ryerson skaters. The home team was awarded another power-play after a slashing call on Mitch Gallant (Ottawa, Ont.) but Brock barely had time to set up their man-advantage attack before taking their own penalty for having six skaters on the ice.
Ryerson scored what would be the game-winning goal when Matthew Andreacchi (Mississauga, Ont.) one-timed a pass from Wise at 13:21 in the third period.
One last chance for Brock came when Thomas Stajan (Mississauga, Ont.) won a face-off in the neutral zone and supplied Johnson Andrews (Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.) with a lead pass, but Andrews’ ensuing shot went painfully wide of the net.
Ryerson added three more goals, two of them into an empty net to close the deal. Ryerson was clearly the dominant team as they outshot Brock 43-25.
The Brock Badgers will look to bounce back from this loss, as they take on the Guelph Gryphons on Oct. 30 for their next home game. The puck drops at 7:15 p.m. at the Seymour-Hannah Centre.