Bombers Fall Short Against the Centennial Cup Hosts

Photo Credit: Lori Bolliger / Hockey Canada Images

Photo Credit: Lori Bolliger / Hockey Canada Images

By James Brohm

Oakville, ON – It was a highly-anticipated, prime time matchup between the host, Oakville Blades and the newcomer to the Canadian Junior Hockey League, Sioux Lookout Bombers. Even more Bombers fans showed up Saturday night for the opportunity for family and friends to see their Bombers play in the national championship.

Sioux Lookout got a jump early and generated several scoring chances in the first couple minutes of play. Oakville took the first penalty of the game at 4:21. The Bombers increased the pressure and sustained it for the entire power play and beyond. Shots at the 10 minute mark were 10-6 in favour of the Blades, despite prolonged o-zone time for the Bombers. At 16:51, the Bombers went on the plower play again and came close to getting the icebreaker on numerous plays around the Blades’ net. The teams retired to the dressing rooms scoreless after one period.

Jack Osmond was up to his usual self, continuing to make big saves for the first 5 minutes of the middle frame. The Bombers, ignited by the play of their goaltender turned the tide and started to dominate play. Unfortunately, hemmed in their own end for a lengthy shift, the Bombers took a penalty at 12:38. The Blades’ deadly power play went to work and converted just 33 seconds in to the player advantage. The power play marker was scored by Sean Clarke. The Blades struck again at 7:23 when Maxwell Donohoe walked in from the point and ripped a shot past the glove of Osmond. Oakville added a third goal just over a minute later. Jacob Crisp, in the slot, took a centering feed from Kyle Kussman and deposited the puck to give the Blades a 3-0 lead. In the late stages of the period, Cobe Delaney placed a hard shot right onto Blades goalie, Mikkel Christensen. The puck popped up in to the air and fell behind, bounced off the goalie’s back and into the cage at 17:28. Sioux Lookout trailed Oakville 3-1 at the intermission. Shots on goal were 32-29 in favour of the Blades.

The Bombers had good energy shifts to start the third period and Trever Sanderson cut the Blades’ lead to one goal at 1:22. He pounced on a rebound off an Owen Cotter shot. Oakville was able to re-establish the two goal lead at 4:31 on a goal by Kenneth Belanger and Matthew Indovina added an insurance marker for the Blades at 6:02. The middle of the frame opened up and the teams traded grade-A scoring chances. However, as the period wore on, the Blades were successful in clogging up the neutral zone and not allowing the Bombers to breakout or gain the blue line effectively. The Blades held on for a 5-2 victory over the Bombers. Final shots on goal were 46 for the Blades and 34 for the Bombers.

The Bombers are back on the ice on Sunday evening to take on the Miramichi Timberwolves in their third game of the preliminary round.