Bantam AE Stars Open The Regular Season Undefeated, News, Bantam AE ('99-'00), 2013-2014 (St. Thomas Minor Hockey)

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Bantam AE Stars Open The Regular Season Undefeated
Submitted By Harry Cosgrove on Saturday, October 12, 2013
The St Thomas Bantam AE Jr. Stars have opened the 2013-2014 regular season undefeated in Shamrock league play.

The team began with a 3-2 win over Mt Brydges, as Chris Wood got the start in net and was solid throughout the game.  The game featured two breakaway goals by Dylan Buhler, a 3 point game by Joshua Hare (1 goal, 2 assists), a goal by Payton Demeray. There were two other assists from Ryan Verhoeven and one from Lane Westgate.  The team played well with good puck movement, solid defence from Justin May and Sam Graham and good chemistry from a relatively new group of players.


Our second game was against the Dorchester Dragons and featured the season debut of Trent Riley between the pipes.  He wasn’t tested very often early, but made some key saves late when it counted.  The team jumped out to an early lead but then penalty trouble allowed the Dragons to come back and eventually take the lead. The scoring was spread out with Bradley Johnson and Noah Allen netting their first goals of the season. Josh Hare had another multiple point night with a goal and an assist, while Payton Demeray scored his second of the season. Noah DosSantos, Colin Wright had assists, but it was Ryan Verhoeven’s point blast with less than a minute to go, down by a score of 5-4, on a power play and with our net empty that had the St Thomas fans cheering. The goal allowed the team to come back and secure the single point tie for the Bantam AE Stars.


Game three saw the team travel to Strathroy for a tilt versus the Rockets with Chris Wood in net once again.  Our boys played a solid game from start to finish and kept the penalities down to just four, 2 minute minors.  Our defensive zone coverage was excellent and we benefited from timely scoring once again.  Noah DosSantos and Lane Westgate were finally rewarded with goals from all their hard work and Dylan Buhler continued his torrid pace by netting his 4th of the season.  Josh Hare kept his point streak alive with another two assists along with Ryan Payne’s two assists. Kyle Noviss and Ryan Verhoeven added an assist a piece. The 3-2 win over Strathroy restored the team’s confidence in themselves.


Game four was an afternoon affair in Mooretown on a muggy Saturday which meant soft, slow ice and poor conditions.  The boys pressed hard early on and carried the play through much of the first period but found themselves down a goal early.  The Mooretown goalie seemed to have a bulls-eye painted on his mid-section as our team fired shot after shot into his chest protector.  Finally, we broke through only to have Mooretown score a goal that apparently defied the laws of physics.  In the end though, the Bantam AE Stars won 3-2 and were powered by Ryan Payne’s first of the season, another multiple point game from Josh Hare (1 goal and 2 assists) and goal and assist from Lane Westgate.  Despite the early goal and phantom tally, Trent Riley played another solid game and our overall team defence was solid with good backchecking from our forwards on several Mooretown rushes.


So, after four regular season league games, the team is playing well.  The boys seem to be getting along in the changeroom, we have picked up our defensive zone system well and almost every player on the team has either a goal or assist.  Things do seem to be going good, but winning will do that for you.  The boys have much work to do though and need to press on forward as other teams will be gunning for us. Being in first place will do that.


Enjoy your long Thanksgiving Day weekend and the short break before our schedule really ramps up, leading into our upcoming tournaments.

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