The Rice Memorial Prep hockey team kicked-off the 2018-19 season with a 2-0 weekend sweep over A21 Academy (Windsor, ON).
On Saturday, A21 Academy opened up the scoring 5 minutes into the game off of a defensive zone breakdown by the Knights. However, the Knights quickly answered back as Eetu Maki-Soini (Rauma, Finland) took advantage of a turnover in the high slot and fired the puck top-shelf to even the score to 1-1. The two teams continued to trade blows throughout the 2nd and 3rd periods as Maki-Soini added another tally and defenseman Paulius Macijauskas (Kedainiai, Lithuania) got in the scoring to bring the game to a 3-3 tie at the end of regulation. In overtime, the Knights capitalized on the powerplay with a perfectly placed slapshot from Mason Marcellus (Greely, Ontario) to secure the victory.
Coach Vickers on Saturday’s game: “I thought the game was a great example of playing through adversity. While I felt like we were outplaying the other team, we weren’t necessarily getting the results we wanted early on. It was important that the boys continue to play the game and keep chipping away to come back and tie late in the period and then come through in OT. Again, that can be attributed to them sticking with it and playing hard till the end.”
The Knights carried their momentum into Sunday’s rematch by attaining an early 4-1 lead, led by two goals from junior forward Frederic Nicolas (St-Jerome, QC) and one each by Mac Miller (Shelburne, VT) and Guillaume Sercia (Rosemere, QC). The 3rd period saw the Knights get into some penalty trouble, as they allowed A21 Academy to crawl back to within one goal. With the score now 4-3 late in the third, forward Julien Blouin (Lorraine, QC) posted an insurance tally with a heavy shot from the perimeter to propel the Knights to a 5-3 win, completing the weekend sweep.
Senior captain Oliver Gignoux on the weekend: “It was great to go out and get a couple wins at home. It was also great to see the families and students coming out to the games early in the season… as I know the boys appreciate the support!”
The Knights will enjoy a weekend off before returning to action Sept. 28 @ the East Coast Spartans U18 and Sept. 29-30 @ Bridgton Academy.