Regals return home to collect first win of season
GUELPH – Returning home to the Victoria Road arena was just what the Guelph Regals needed to record their first victory of the Ontario junior B lacrosse league season.
“Coming home tonight was real important,” Guelph coach Al Burton said. “We’d played three of our first four games on the road and we played real well here against Elora a couple of weeks ago. It was good to get back home and get that win.”
The Regals had a pair of five-goal outbursts Friday night as they scored a 17-9 win over the Welland Generals.
“We played a good game tonight,” Burton said. “The guys needed not only the win tonight, but they needed to score a lot of goals for their confidence and we did that.”
“This is amazing,” Regals’ Shane Halliwell said. “We got off to a bit of a rocky start to the season, but the boys really picked it up tonight. We got a few of our guys back from injuries and all the pieces really clicked tonight. It’s a great feeling.”
Guelph’s first five-goal run came in the final six minutes of the second period as they turned a one-goal deficit into an 11-7 lead. The other five-goal spree came in the final seven minutes of the game as they pulled away to the final eight-goal difference.
“This was our highest tempo game so we’ve got to keep the tempo high, keep the pace going and play physical and clean,” Halliwell said.
The game became chippy, especially in the third period, and Burton felt referees Michael Jolley and Ryan Wilson could have prevented that from happening.
“We’re asking our guys to play the right way,” Burton said. “Our team motto is that we want the guys to play the right way and we’re getting there. We’re a young team and when we see officiating like what we saw tonight, it’s completely unacceptable. I got thrown out of the game and I’ve got to defend my players. That’s all I can say about that. We’re going to complain to the office.”
Burton was tossed for arguing the calls following a dust-up with 4:06 to go in the game when Guelph’s Kaz Nizielski was awarded a fighting major and the accompanying game misconduct and Welland’s Dylan Dekoe was given an unnecessary roughness minor.
Halliwell, Liam Holwell and Michael Blaymires each had three goals for the Regals Friday while newly-acquired Mitch Taylor and Ethan Keleher scored twice each. Jack Burke, Julian Siragusa, Nizielski and Aiden Marroni added single goals. Ethan Keleher assisted on six of the goals while Burke, Grant Patterson, Marcus Keleher, Marco Middaugh and Halliwell each had two assists. Getting one assist apiece were Nizielski, Tyler Beecraft, Cam Wheeldon, Taylor, Marroni and Blaymires.
Bailey Fournier-Higgins and Lucas Briscall scored twice apiece for Welland while the other goals were scored by Liam Haine, Davis Shepherd, Peter Hrynuik, Evan Williams and Justin Porga. Hrynuik had four assists while Nick Villella had three, Porga had two and Ethen Wellings, Shepherd, Justin McPherson, Briscall and Fournier-Higgins each had one.
Both teams had to be pretty happy with their power-play efforts, but not so happy with their penalty killing. Both had 10 power plays with Welland getting six power-play goals and Guelph getting five.
“We liked our effort all around tonight,” Burton said. “We would’ve liked to have stayed out of the penalty box a bit more. Some of those penalties we owned, but the ones that we didn’t own, the referees have to own. We’ll take responsibility for the ones that we owned. We gave up six power-play goals tonight and that’s just not going to get you to heaven. Not in this league.”
Chris Wood picked up the win in the Guelph net in his first outing of the season. Matt Hines took the loss for Welland and he was replaced late in the third period by Joe Joe Brant.
The result leaves the Regals at 1-3-1 and Welland at 0-5-0.
With Burton in his first season behind the Guelph bench, the Regals have gone for a faster pace.
“He’s really pressed us about keeping up the ball pace and keeping up the movement,” Halliwell said. “That’s something that’s really stuck in our minds the whole time, keeping the ball going fast.”
The Regals are to host the Windsor Clippers (4-1-1) Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Victoria Road arena. The Clippers defeated the Regals 4-1 at Windsor last weekend.
“We’ve got a tough tilt on Sunday,” Burton said. “We feel like we owe Windsor one. We played pretty well up in Windsor, but we just couldn’t score. We’ll see how it goes.”
Regals 17 Generals 9
1. Guelph, Jack Burke (unassisted), 0:32
2. Guelph, Mitch Taylor (Kaz Nizielski, Jack Burke), 8:03
3. Welland, Liam Haine (Ethen Wellings, Peter Hrynuik), 8:21
4. Welland, Davis Shepherd (Nick Villella), 10:35 sh
5. Guelph, Shane Halliwell (Tyler Beecraft, Grant Patterson), 14:12
6. Guelph, Julian Siragusa (Ethan Keleher, Cam Wheeldon), 14:47
7. Welland, Bailey Fournier-Higgins (Peter Hrynuik), 16:42 pp
Penalties: Julian Siragusa Gue (slashing), 2:25; Carter McGrath Gue (holding), 6:23; Joe Brigante Well (crease violation), 9:26; Kaz Nizielski Gue (holding), 11:06; Carter McGrath Gue (elbowing), 15:56; Carter TenEycke Gue (roughing), Max Brook Well (roughing), 18:49.
8. Guelph, Ethan Keleher (Marcus Keleher, Mitch Taylor), 0:36 pp
9. Welland, Lucas Briscall (Peter Hrynuik), 2:36
10. Welland, Bailey Fournier-Higgins (Justin Porga, Nick Villella), 5:49 pp
11. Welland, Peter Hrynuik (Justin Porga), 6:18 pp
12. Guelph, Liam Holwell (Aiden Marroni, Ethan Keleher), 8:15 pp
13. Welland, Lucas Briscall (Davis Shepherd, Justin McPherson), 13:04 pp
14. Guelph, Kaz Nizielski (Grant Patterson, Marcus Keleher), 14:00 pp
15. Guelph, Michael Blaymires (unassisted), 14:28 pp
16. Guelph, Mitch Taylor (Marco Middaugh), 15:23
17. Guelph, Shane Halliwell (Ethan Keleher), 15:30
18. Guelph, Ethan Keleher (unassisted), 19:59 ea
Penalties: Peter Hrynuik Well (slashing), 0:19; Nick Villella Well (checking in the crease), 3:29; Ethan Keleher Gue (charging), 4:52; Julian Siragusa Gue (illegal cross checking), 5:38; Ethen Wellings Well (slashing), 7:32; Evan Williams Well (holding), Billy Dale Well (checking from behind), 11:59; Max Brook Well (illegal cross checking, unsportsmanlike conduct), 13:23; Hayden Miller Well (slashing), 16:38.
19. Guelph, Shane Halliwell (Jack Burke), 3:28
20. Welland, Evan Williams (Lucas Briscall, Peter Hrynuik), 6:11 pp
21. Welland, Justin Porga (Bailey Fournier-Higgins, Nick Villella), 11:31 pp
22. Guelph, Aiden Marroni (Michael Blaymires), 12:59
23. Guelph, Michael Blaymires (Ethan Keleher), 13:06
24. Guelph, Liam Holwell (Shane Halliwell, Marco Middaugh), 13:49
25. Guelph, Michael Blaymires (Ethan Keleher, Shane Halliwell), 15:37 pp
26. Guelph, Liam Holwell (Ethan Keleher), 17:58
Penalties: Carter TenEycke Gue (interference, slashing), 5:52; Marcus Keleher Gue (charging major, interference), Liam Haine Well (roughing), 8:17; Liam Holwell Gue (illegal cross checking), 10:27; Ethen Wellings Well (roughing), 14:23.
Shots on Goal
Goalies: Matt Hines (L, 53:49, 46 shots-31 saves), Joe Joe Brant (6:11, 7 shots-5 saves), Welland; Chris Wood (W, 53 shots-44 saves), Guelph.
Power Plays (goals-chances): Welland 6-10; Guelph 5-10.
- Guelph Sports Journal