Elora Mohawks drop Regals, but they wanted more
Rob Massey, Guelph Sports Journal
ELORA – It was a win for the Elora Mohawks, but they felt they could have done better.
It was a loss for the Guelph Regals, but it was a better effort than the night before when they were shut out at home.
Kurtis Woodland struck for four goals and three assists as he led the Mohawks to a 9-2 victory over the Regals in Ontario junior B lacrosse league play Saturday night at the Elora and District Community Centre.
“We could’ve been better tonight,” Elora coach Kyle Goss said. “I don’t think Guelph’s very happy with that game on their side either and we’re not exactly pleased with the way we played either. But a win’s a win. I don’t know if we were looking ahead to tomorrow a little bit, but that’s not the way we want to operate.”
The win pushes Elora’s record to 8-4-0. The Mohawks are to host the Windsor Clippers (7-1-1) at the Elora and District Community Centre Sunday at 7 p.m.
Saturday’s game came eight days after the Mohawks had defeated the Regals 15-2 at the Sleeman Centre.
“That was probably in our guy’s heads a little bit,” Goss said. “Us as a coaching staff tried hard to kind of level them out and (let them know) this game was going to be nothing like last week’s. Guelph proved it and that’s a lesson learned, even though we got a win.”
“Every game’s a game,” Woodland said. “This is a division game – they’re in our division – so no matter what, this matters. It’s good to get up and battle everyone the same way.”
Saturday, the Regals surrendered the first five goals of the game, three of them coming in the opening period. The Mohawks connected for their first goal 58 seconds into the game.
Elora led 3-0 at the end of the first period and 5-1 after the second.
“We just got a lot of chances,” Woodland said of his seven-point night. “We were setting a lot of picks. In practice we were really going over what we needed to do, just going over all of our plays and making sure we knew everything.”
Again shots were at a minimum for the Regals as they were held to 25 for the game, an improvement of six from Friday night’s loss to the Orangeville Northmen. Elora had 55.
Matt Humphrey picked up the win in the Elora net while Brady Wilson was tagged with the loss for the Regals.
A game between Elora and Guelph usually has a different feel to it than any other game either team plays. Most of the players know each other and several on the opposing sides are actually schoolmates. While they’re often tough matches, there usually isn’t anything extra thrown into the checks and for the most part the yapping is friendly with trash talking at a minimum.
“I know a couple of (their) guys just from playing field lacrosse,” Woodland said. “We share the same centre.
“I feel like on the floor because I’m buddies with a couple of the guys, they went a little easier on me today. I didn’t catch a couple of slashes that I usually would and it’s always nice not having to feel that stick go across your body.”
Both teams entered the game coming off a loss to Orangeville. The Mohawks completed a stretch of four games in five days with a 4-3 loss at Orangeville last Monday while the Regals were blanked 12-0 at the Sleeman Centre Friday night.
“We expected more in the Orangeville game, but we knew we were probably a little bit gassed as well,” Goss said. “At the end of the day it showed again. We struggled to score goals and it caught up to us. You don’t see many 4-3 games in lacrosse. Our offence just kind of struggled a little bit again and that kind of happens with us.”
The Mohawks have hit double figures in goals four times this season – twice against the Regals and once each against the Point Edward Pacers and London Blue Devils. The Pacers have won four times, the Regals and Blue Devils once each.
Sam Rooney, Hyatt Welsh, Ryan Mueller, Dawson Bolger and Eric Egan had a goal apiece for Elora Saturday night while Klayton Hoelscher assisted on three of the goals. Welsh, Mueller and Dawson Bolger each had two assists while Egan, Ryan Buller and Nathan Bolger had one apiece.
Ben Heidecker scored both goals for Guelph while assists were awarded to Quenton Begin, Daniel Nakatsu, Cole Cook and Kent Radbourne.
Heidecker’s first goal at 18:54 of the second period put an end to a scoreless streak for the Regals at 79 minutes and 25 seconds of game time. Their previous goal had come with 29 seconds to go in their 16-6 win over the Niagara Thunderhawks last Sunday at Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Saturday’s loss leaves the Regals at 1-9-0. It was the third meeting between the teams this season and Elora has won all three. They’re to battle one more time – June 16 at the Sleeman Centre.
Next game for the Regals is Thursday when they’re to tangle with the Owen Sound North Stars (5-6-0) at Owen Sound, the first game of three in a four-day stretch.