Article by I. Schoonderbeek/Photos by C. Archer & T. Schoonderbeek
It wasn’t pretty, but the Clarington Eagles extended their win streak to four games to open the season. The boys in red squeaked out a 2-1 victory over the visiting Uxbridge Bruins Thursday evening at Garnet B. Rickard Recreation Complex.
Despite the win, head coach Dean Baumhauer wasn’t entirely pleased with the effort of his squad. “A lot of guys were fighting the puck tonight,” said Dean. “I thought we had some undisciplined play, and we took too many offensive zone penalties. I think the strength of our team is being able to run four lines, but we’ve only really had two lines going that last couple of games.”
Trent Gaylor opened the scoring in the first period. He intercepted an Uxbridge breakout pass and then chipped his own rebound past the surprised Bruins goaltender. Gaylor would later be ejected from the game after a third-period fight.
“I liked Gaylor’s game tonight,” said Baumhauer. “Someone took a pretty good run at his linemate, Junkin. I liked how he stood up for his teammate. He has some jam to his game”
There was a scary moment in the third period when Bryson Kelloway, who played another solid game on the blue line, was the recipient of a hard hit from behind in the corner. The rugged defenseman returned to the ice and took a regular shift after briefly going to the Eagles’ dressing room.
“Not every game is not going to be a work of art,” said Baumhauer. “It was a little ugly out there at times. But the penalty kill was really good, we got the win, and we’re 4-0 to start the year. So I’m not going to complain.”
Baumhauer was also pleased with the performance of rookie goaltender Carter Watson. “He had a good game for us tonight,” said Dean. “He’s a little unorthodox, but one goal against is very good. He got the job done for us.”
Kelloway also had high praise for the team’s young goalies. “Both our goalies are really rounding into form right now and giving us confidence on the back end and moving forward.”
“As a D-core I thought we really played well tonight,” Kelloway continued. “Tonight was a good building block heading into tomorrow’s game.”
With the win, the Eagles sit atop the Orr Division standings, four points ahead of the Little Britain Merchants (2-0) and the Georgina Ice (2-1).
The Eagles travel to Georgina Friday night to take on the Ice at the Georgina Ice Palace. Puck drop is 7:30 p.m.