Junior A Canadiens avoid weekend sweep with 5-2 win

Toronto replies with five straight after falling behind

The Toronto Junior A Canadiens celebrate their 5-2 victory over the Buffalo Junior A Sabres. Craig Hagerman- Toronto Observer

The Toronto Junior A Canadiens scored five unanswered goals after falling behind, on route to a 5-2 victory Sunday night.

Canadiens avoided a weekend sweep with the win following a 6-5 loss Friday to the Hamilton Red Wings, and a 2-1 decision Saturday to the Milton Ice Hawks.

Head Coach Mario Cicchillo believes the win capped off a solid weekend where despite what the scoreboard reflected the team played very well.

“I thought we played two very good games, we just didn’t get the bounces,” said Cicchillo. “The guys are doing what they’re taught to do in practice. It’s a game of chess; you make the wrong move and its checkmate.

“The guys worked hard all three games and the hard work paid off tonight.”

“The guys worked hard all three games and the hard work paid off tonight.”

—Mario Cicchillo

Aaron Spivak led the way offensively for the Canadiens with two goals and an assist on the night while Luca Farrace also chipped in with a goal and two assists. With his three point performance, Spivak is now tied for the league lead in scoring with nine points through the first five games.

Despite the burst in offence in the second and third periods, the Canadiens found themselves down by two just 2:39 into the game.

This comes after their loss Friday when the team blew two two-goal leads. The fact that they were able to come back shows that they have something that many of the best teams in the league have suggests Spivak.

“It shows our team character,” said Spivak. “To go down 2-0 very quick and to bounce back and to come together is something championship teams all need to have to move on and to win games and it’s a really good sign tonight that we rallied.”

The Canadiens have been working hard this week in practice on new systems and Spivak believes the team has seen success with them the last two games.

“We were adjusting to new systems and it’s working out,” said Spivak. “Obviously the shot total last night (outshooting Milton 48-19), but we’ve got to work on burying goals and that was the focus today and it kind of panned out towards the end.”

Spivak was the recipient of two great passes Sunday connecting on the powerplay in the second period when Kevin Hancock, from behind the net, found Spivak in front; snapping the puck over the shoulder of Sabres goalie Nate Skidmore.

While on his second of the night and fifth of the season he was able to finish off the cross crease pass from Justin Maiolino.

The game marked the second time in two nights where the Canadiens were able to direct more than 40 shots towards the opposition’s net.

After being outshot 12-10 in the first period, the Canadiens would allow just eight more Sabres shots through the final two periods, outshooting them 41-20 by the time the final whistle sounded.

Though offence seemed to be the story of the night, defenceman Andrew Mullen who scored the game’s tying goal, suggests goaltender Nathan Colitto really helped keep the team in the game.

“Colitto backs us up all the time,” said Mullen. “One play I screwed up, I coughed up the puck and it went straight to their guy, but he always comes up and saves our asses.”

The Bolton, Ont. native Colitto, made 18 saves on 20 shots for his second win of the season. The 19-year-old now has a respectable 2.00 goals against average and a 0.922 save percentage.

The Canadiens next game is Saturday when they welcome the Wellington Dukes to Buckingham Arena, puck drop is at 8 p.m.

About this article

By: Craig Hagerman
Posted: Sep 15 2014 7:44 am
Filed under: Amateur Hockey Local Sports Sports