Jr. Raiders headed to Game Seven
Lacrosse: Mountaineers rally off impressive win to send series the distance
By: By Remy Greer
| Posted: Friday, Aug 09, 2013 10:48 am
The fourth win in a seven-game series is always the most difficult.
Look no further than the Alberta Jr. A finals where the Calgary Mountaineers rallied off a 9-5 win over the Okotoks Jr. Raiders, Thursday night at Pason Centennial Arena, to force a seventh and deciding game. The Raiders held a 3-1 series advantage prior to the Mounties’ two wins in a row.
Staring elimination in the face, the Mountaineers drew first blood in Game 6.
After Calgary’s Patrick Henry opened the scoring, Mountaineer goalie Jordan Kancsal did his best stonewall impression through the early stages of the first period, posting massive stops on Matthew Kristiansen and stymieing Mark Wilson on a breakaway.
Kristiansen finally got the Raiders on the board midway through the frame on a seeing eye point shot with momentum firmly on Okotoks’ side.
Against the run of play Calgary’s Ian McShane saw his shot beat Raiders netminder Mike DeGirolamo to restore the one-goal advantage for the visitors. The Mountaineers stout defence kept Okotoks to the perimeter for much of the remainder of the stanza before Kristiansen doubled his money. The slippery attackman shed a pair of Mountaineers and snuck a five-hole shat past Kancsal to even the contest at 2-2 after 20 minutes.
Wilson gave Okotoks its first lead of the game on his second breakaway attempt of the contest, this time beating the Calgary netminder high. Calgary’s top sniper Dan Taylor then evened the score on a great individual effort on a penalty kill. The league’s top scorer shrugged off two Raiders, escaped from the boards with possession and wristed a shot into the top corner. The shorthanded tally would mark a clear turning point in the contest.
Mountaineer speedster Matt Andruchow ensured the visitors went into the intermission with a priceless one-goal lead when he won a foot race, held off Kristiansen and beat DeGirolamo high.
Taylor was the story for the Mountaineers in the final frame. The rangy left sided player scored two goals off screens in a span of 1:13 along with Connor Wilson’s powerplay goal to give Calgary a comfortable four-goal lead.
Raider Kevin Pym cut the lead to three with a tally on the man-advantage, but Calgary’s Austin Jerhoff answered right back just 19 seconds later.
Okotoks kept it close when DeGirolamo sprung Jordan Getz on a terrific pass before the left sided player spun around and trickled one past the Calgary goalie.
With the Okotoks net empty in the final minute, Taylor put an exclamation point on a dominant performance with his fourth marker of the evening to secure the 9-5 victory for the Mountaineers.
The Jr. A finals will be decided in a winner-take-all seventh game between the southern rivals for the second year in a row. The Mountaineers won last year’s contest by a 16-11 score.
Game 7 goes Saturday at 2 p.m. at Stu Peppard Arena in Calgary.
For more information go to raiderslacrosse.ca