I know, some of you may be wondering about the silence of the Wes after 10 games and no report. I've just had a bad case of writer's block and could not seem to "figure it out". Well, thanks to my good friend Bruce Dickenson, I have found a cure... it seems all I needed was a little more cowbell. Go Thunder!
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21-Jan vs TI Vikings at the Golden Dome (6-0W)
After a 5-year hiatus, the Greece Athena/Odyssey Thunder Hockey team trek'd north to Ogdensburg for the Brian Wade Memorial Hockey Tournament, that was held at the Ogdensburg Free Academy (OFA) Golden Dome in January. Thunder faced the Thousand Island Vikings 7:30pm on Friday nite (21-Jan) for their opening game, which turned out to be not much of a contest as Thunder outshot the Vikings by a 2-1 margin (32-15) for a 6-0 final. Leading the way for Thunder were Brandon Hutchison, with 2 goals and 1 assist for 3pts, Tyler Mattle with a pair of goals, and Anthony Crawford with 1 goal and 3 assists for 4pts. Andrew Simonelli tended nets for the Thunder and stopped all 15 shots he faced.
Did not get to meet the DJ but it was obvious by the end of the warm-up that they like their AC-DC up there in the north country. Ima rollin thunder, im pourin rain, im comin on like a hurricane. Well hells bells yeah, wee little Brandon Hutchison came on like a hurricane after taking a shot to the head in his first shift by a kid who was a head and a half taller. Before skating off on a change, Hutch payed the kid a visit in the opposite corner and rang his bell. Snake walked the line and put several pucks on net but could not buy a goal on his birthday. Fast forward to the end of the first frame and Hutch would shift gears from ringing bells to lighting lamps, as he crashed the net and put away the corner feed from Anthony Crawford with 13.5 seconds to the first cut. It seems they like their Neil Diamond up north as well with Sweet Caroline filling the Golden Dome at the first intermission.
AC got his two and a half mins into the second with a wraparound stuff, assisted by Jared Tam-Grimshaw. Six minutes later Tyler Mattle would score when a shot by Eric Hostetter deflected in off his skate. And with just 39.8 seconds left in the frame, Hutch picked up his second goal of the evening, tucking in the rebound on the powerplay, after AC hit the post, to make it 4-0 Thunder.
During the second intermission Jodi Grills dubbed the venue "Wades World" as Pat was sharing stories of how he used to walk from class to hockey practice without even having to go outside. Several folks commented on how one of the officials looked to be about 80yrs old and of course Wader knew the guy, Mel Tomalty, and indicated he was actually 77 years old and used to ref his HS games back in the day. In the backdrop of all this education the DJ showed his range from getting the Led out to Funky Cold Medina to Ice-Ice baby to Sweet Home Alabama to Ride Sally Ride to YMCA to My Sharona (Daryl's personal fav) to Fight for your right to party. A few missing tracks that would have made the playlist complete include: Head Games (Foreigner), We're Not Gonna Take It (Twisted Sister), and R-E-S-P-E-C-T (Aretha).
Halfway through the third Tyler Mattle took a pass from Eric Hostetter at neutral, walked in, pulled up, and sniped short side for the 3-hole goal, his second on the nite. Rounding out the scoring with Thunder's sixth and final goal of the game was Jared Tam-Grimshaw, assisted by AC and Hutch. Just about everyone got their feet wet in this lopsided contest including the rookies who showed some promise with some nice passing plays down the stretch. Back on the bus to the Quality Inn for a Pot Luck Dinner compliments of the booster club - can we get a "thanks mom and dad"?
22-Jan vs OFA Blue Devils at the Golden Dome (4-3L)
While the "Thunder of Greece" came up short losing 4-3 to the "Blue Devils of OFA" in the Saturday matinee, it was a period-by-period points based tournament format, and so Thunder still managed to win it and bring home the hardware. Scoring for Thunder in this game were Justin Simonelli, Anthony Crawford, and Tyler Mattle. Shots were 31-29 in Thunder's favor. Andrew Simonelli made 25 saves. The following Thunder players were named to the All-Tournament Team: Tyler Mattle, Michael Briganti, and Brandon Hutchison (MVP).
Prior to the game, a ceremonial face-off was held at center ice with Pat Wade dropping the puck between OFA captain Eric Barr and Thunder captain Michael Briganti, in memory of his brother Brian Wade who died playing the game he loved on that very same sheet of ice in that very same building.
OFA proved to be a more formidable foe than the Vikes were the nite before, forcing Andrew Simonelli to make some tough saves in the early going. He was active with his stick and made several nice breakout passes to stretch the ice as well. Ten minutes into the contest he would pass to torch to his brother, Justin Simonelli, who curled with a guy on him and muscled one in to break the seal, assisted by Jonathan Clark and Anthony Fedele. OFA answered back with the equalizer 5 minutes into the second but Thunder was not done and would rally 3 minutes later with some solid teamwork in tight for the go-ahead goal. It was Jared Tam-Grimshaw lugging the mail in for Hutch who flipped it across the crease to AC and then AC froze the goalie with a dirty deke done dirt cheap. Two minutes later Tyler Mattle widened the gap, picking up the trash in front and putting it away after a bid by McSkillet came up short. Eric Hostetter picked up the second helper on Thunder's third tally.
Unfortunately, it was all OFA for the rest of the way as they recorded a shortie with a buck and a half to go in the second and went on to score 2 more in the final frame. Not even the DJ queueing Thunderstruck during Thunder's timeout with 20.8 seconds left on the clock could change the outcome, but it did bring back memories of that song playing in the background, as Thunder came from behind to win it all in Utica.
Pay no attention to the silver minivan with Thunder stickers and magnets on the rear pulled over by the Po-Po outside of Hammond. For the record, there was no ticket issued, he just wanted to know how we did in the tournament. I, of course, had the cruise control set at 35mph for the balance of the trip home!
25-Jan vs Greece Lightning at the Shore (5-0W)
27-Jan vs Fairport Red Raiders at the Creek (10-4L)
29-Jan vs Hilton Cadets at the Shore (6-4W)
4-Feb vs Churchville Chili Saints at the Scot (1-0W)
7-Feb vs Aquinas Little Irish at the Shore (4-2L, ENG)
10-Feb vs Irondequoit Eagles at the Shore (4-1W)
16-Feb vs Penfield Patriots at the Shore (4-0W)
19-Feb vs Brighton/ER/HFL Barons at MCC (4-1W)
23-Feb vs Gates Chili Spartans at MCC (2-1W in OT)
27-Feb vs Fairport Red Raiders at RIT (4-2W, ENG)
5-Mar vs Ithaca at LS (2-0W, ENG)
12-Mar vs Saratoga Blue Streak at Utica memorial Auditorium (1-0L)
(State Championship Seminfinals)
Words of wisdom for our boys from Coach Weilert: "Skate hard, play fast, given 'em everything you got... Play like champions today! Go get 'em boys!"
Mike Sofia on exit from the pre-quarter game… "brings back a lot of memories."
"Thunder... there is no other.. I cried just like I did 2 years ago!. So proud. See ya all Saturday. Forever #21" - Jeannine Ryan
Words of wisdom from former BC Prez, Kim. Please share with your boys: "Every game starts with a clean sheet of ice.What matters is which team brings their A game and gives it all, every shift. The team that wins doesn’t have to have the most talent. They have to have the most heart. “Hard Work Beats Talent when Talent doesn’t work hard!!!”
All – JV has won again! They defeated Penfield (7 -2) on Monday and Wayne (4-2) on Wednesday. They are playing tonight for the RED Division Championship title!
JV WON THEIR DIVISION!!! It was a close game but the best team won! They defeated Brockport 3 to 2 and it was a nail biter (and Laura left her pants in the stands)
Thanks to all who came out to MCC to support the JV boys and coaches! Kudos to Coach Pat for turning this team around. They went from not winning one game last year, to winning the championship this year. He should be proud!