Logan Churko stymies opposition with a crease boffo performance
Submitted – Photos By Gav
The Highland Storm Bantam ‘A’ started their season off with two hard-fought exhbition wins over the tough and fast Bancroft Jets.
In Bancroft on Saturday night the Storm broke a scoreless tie five minutes into the third period with a goal by Joseph Patrick, assisted by Curtis Ballantyne.
The Jets finally got on the board with just over a minute left to tie the game. But then Braden Roberts – assist to Devon Upton – netted the winner with 50 seconds remaining.
Back in Haliburton on Sunday afternoon, the game started out in scratchy and chippy fashion, no surprise for teams with only a few practices under their belts.
In the second period the teams traded goals with the Storm scoring first (Patrick, assisted by Mac Rider and Noah Dollo), and then broke it open with three straight goals: Ballantyne, assisted by Patrick and Dollo; Patrick, from Ballantyne; and Roberts, assisted by Upton.
Goalie Logan Churko was outstanding in both games, cool, confident, and totally focused, another indicator that this could be a very competitive group in the Muskoka Parry Sound League, and in the OMHA playdowns in the 2012.
The Highland Storm Midgets also played a home and away exhibition series against the Jets, tying both games, 2 -2 in Bancroft and 3-3 at home.
These four games were the first for the Storm to be played with the new Head Contact rule change in effect.
The rule states: “… a Minor penalty shall be assessed to any player who accidentally contacts an opponent in the head, face or neck with his stick or any part of the player’s body or equipment.”
Further, “… a Double Minor Penalty of a Major and a Game Misconduct Penalty, at the discretion of the Referee and based on the degree of violence of impact shall be assessed to any player who intentionally contacts an opponent in the head, face or neck with his/her stick or any part of the player’s body or equipment.”
And, “A Major and a Game Misconduct penalty, or a Match penalty shall be assessed any player who injures an opponent under this Rule. A Match penalty shall be assessed any player who deliberately attempts to injure of deliberately injures an opponent under this Rule.”
It will take a number of games for both players and refs to get used to the new regime: in all four of these games most of the minor penalties were for accidental contact.
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