LLOYDMINSTER, SK (May 14, 2016) – The Brooks Bandits (0-1) had two goals disallowed in their RBC Cup opener against the Trenton Golden Hawks (1-0) on Saturday afternoon, losing the tournament’s opening game 3-2 to the Ontario Junior Hockey League and Dudley Hewitt Cup champions.
The Bandits battled back from a 2-0 deficit to tie the game, and outshot Trenton 31-22 in the game, but a defensive zone turnover in the third period led to the game winner for the Hawks.
Photo credit: Matthew Murnaghan/Hockey Canada Images
Trenton opened the scoring at the 15:28 mark of the opening period when regular season leading scorer Danny Hanlon snuck behind a Bandit backchecker, speeding in on a partial breakaway and firing a wrist shot past goalie Garret Hughson for a 1-0 Golden Hawks lead.
The Bandits thought they had tied the game late in the first, when Cale Makar (Calgary, AB) sped behind the Trenton net off of a faceoff and centered a puck to Dylan McCrory (Kirkland, PQ) whose quick wrister beat a sprawling Daniel Urbani. But in moving to make the save, Urbani barely nudged the net off of a mooring. Under Hockey Canada rules, no goal can be scored with the net dislodged under any circumstances. The play was initially ruled a goal, then reversed, giving the Bandits a 1-0 deficit after one.
It was an inauspicious start to the second for the AJHL champions, as Kevin Lavoie scored for Trenton just 43 seconds in when his wrist shot from the left circle skipped off of Hughson’s glove and bounced behind him, rolling into the Bandits net to make it 2-0.
But the comeback began just over halfway through the game. After a tripping call put the Bandits on the penalty kill, Jesse Pereira (Fort Erie, ON) sped into the Trenton zone shorthanded on a one-on-one rush and snapped a snipe of a shot off the crossbar and into the Trenton net to get the Bandits on the board.
Soon after, at even strength, Pereira led the way again, dropping back a pass at the left circle of the Trenton zone after carrying in, for linemate Kyler Nachtigall (Calgary, AB) to wrist past Urbani to tie the game.
Not long after that, the Bandits appeared to take their first lead of the game, when a Nick Prkusic (Medicine Hat, AB) shot from the left halfboards found the back of the Trenton net. But for the second time, the Bandits had the goal waved off. A referee ruled that Austin Wright (Niagara Falls, ON) had interfered with Urbani, and assessed him a minor penalty. However, video showed clearly that Wright had exited the crease after being tangled with the Trenton goalie, and had not been called for any delayed penalty. After his exiting the crease, the puck entered the Trenton net. It was only after the Bandits scored that Wright’s activity in the crease was deemed to be worthy of a penalty.
In the third, a miscue by the Bandits led to the game’s final goal, when a puck was left behind the Brooks net, scooped up by Liam Morgan, and centered to a wide open Lavoie who jammed a puck past Hughson for the game-winner.
Both teams were 0 for 3 on their respective power plays. The Bandits will resume their tournament round-robin play on Sunday night, taking on the BCHL champion West Kelowna Warriors for the third time this season. Puck drop is at 7:30 PM with pre-game coverage beginning at 7:00 PM on the official broadcaster of the Brooks Bandits, Q105.7.