Friday, October 12, 2007

Deja Vu *Updated 10/13*

I'll just put this out there for now so that people can share my nightmares (I'm just kidding) - I'll clean it up later and polish it tomorrow with some professional updates as well.

UNH 3 - UNB 4 (Follow the title-link to the Official Page's stat sheets on the game)

First Story: JVR - phenomenal.

You could just see the talent (it was oozing off him! really). He should have had another but it went off the top of the crossbar after having put on some incredible moves to split the defense. First game in Blue and White = 2 goals

Second Story: Thomas Fortney

Solid. Played excellent on both ends of the ice - just may fulfill the hopes of many here who are expecting him to really ratchet it up this year - with the way he created chances last night I would say so. And I don't think that that shorthand tally will be his last this year.

Third Story: Radja and Fornataro

Looked like the grizzled veterans that they are. Tons of honed skill and ability they will be unstoppable with JVR. The entire line (Fornataro, Radja, JVR) was chippy tonight, all getting at least one penalty we'll see how that goes.

Fourth Story: Goalies

Regan and Foster looked great, very sharp - I would chalk the goals up to defensive lets downs and too many penalties that weren't killed well.

Fifth Story: Youngsters

It looked like any of the lines from tonight could play at least fourth line (EVERYBODY DRESSED - to the point where they barely fit on the bench! - there were a lot of lines, more than five full lines worth on the bench)

*Rookie of The Game - Matt Campanale: Matt was credited with an assist on James vanRiemsdyk's first goal. He was also a great presence on the ice all night and really looked like he belonged out there. Now, some of you may be saying but James must be given credit for being the 'ROTG' - no. James did not look like a rookie at all (well, maybe a little soft play in the defensive zone) and therefore does not qualify! Besides, James gets the Player of The Game nod!

*Player of The Game - James vanRiemsdyk: If you need any more reason than his two goals in his first game in a Wildcat uniform then you just need to get to a game and see for yourself! Go! Right Now! Buy Tickets! I added a link under the 'Upcoming Games' section! Well, I guess you can't buy tickets until Wednesday before the game. If you don't see this guy skate on Towse Rink you will never forgive yourself!

How the game looked to me:

First Period
I thought that the first was great except for that whole finishing it 0-1 thing. The team was passing better than any team that I can remember(a big critique of mine over the past decade). They looked like a fine tuned machine that was going to tear UNB to shreds at any moment - and in some moments they did. The main thing that wasn't there in the first was the defense. It looked like you took the defense from one team and quite frankly put them behind a clearly superior offense. The only other thing that I would say about the first period, and the entire game really, was quality scoring chances - there weren't any. That's a lie - James had one that he tried to sneak under the UNB goalie, who made a great save, just stopping it with his toes underneath him.

Second Period
When our men went down 0-2 they appeared to be shaken and for a while were back on their heels. To illustrate - our first line took the opening faceoff of the second frame and were scored on in just 12 seconds to which they responded by heading straight to the bench. Things quickly went downhill as they recorded just one shot in the first 10 minutes of the period and were only credited with three (four on the game sheet) on the jumbo-tron for the period. The only high point was vanWildcat's (Trademarked!) insane goal from the 'off-wing' (meaning that his stick, in it's natural grip, would point towards the middle of the ice as opposed to the boards) side of the ice that homed in on the left hand, top corner of the net like a guided missile. Ousak, UNB's goalie, never had a chance.

Third Period
The team seemed to get it back together in the third but for the most part didn't seem able to execute. The passing had deteriorated a bit and they had some of the same problems finishing as before. Fortney would tally his goal in the third, on the shorthand no-less but it would be the only real bright spot of the period although the crowd certainly erupted with vanRiemsdyk's last second goal. Through the period as a whole team offense was up, recording 17 shots but hardly any of them were quality chances.

Post Game:
Throughout the game the team did not seem to be jelling well when it counted - the same can't be said of UNB.

A lot of credit goes to UNB they played HOCKEY. They stayed spread out and for the most part just played as a team - good team defense and good goaltending as well. They really exploited our weaknesses throughout the game and capitalized playing a sound fundamentals game throughout.

Professional Front
Most of our 'Cats were not playing last night and those that were flying under the radar. I did find two short-term 'Cats in the ECHL, AJ Bucchino and John Doherty, are with the Augusta Lynx who were dropped by the Gwinnett Gladiators 7-2 in pre-season play.

Jeff Pietrasiak made his way back to the Reading Royals this year and he got the pre-season win in a goalie-split game. Jeff allowed one goal on eight shots. (these result are from Thursday)

If we backtrack to Wednesday:

Micflikier scored and assisted as his Stockton Thunder edged Brett Hemingway, who had an assist, and the Fresno Falcons. Causing a scare a few days ago was news that an M. Fornataro had signed alongside Jacob in Stockton. Those reports were incorrect as it was N. Fornataro, Matt's brother from what I've read, who played his college hockey for Alaska-Fairbanks.

Now back to last night:

Nothing doing - Shawn Vinz is still list as being with the Charlotte Checkers but did not play last night. And Andrew Leach's Trenton Titans picked up the 'W' last night with a 2-1 win. Andrew was even for the night and recorded one shot on goal.

Be back with more tonight - for now I've got to get out of the house while the day is nice and air myself out as I've covered so much hockey by this point that I smell like a hockey rink!

Go 'Cats!


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