The Pictou County Weeks Crushers got a double dose of energy last week before and during their home game.
The Crushers’ captains and alternates were officially presented with their Kent Cup banner to hoist up at the Pictou County Wellness Centre last Thursday during pre-game ceremonies and followed with a thrilling 6-5 overtime triumph against the South Shore Mustangs.
“It capped off our success last year, but we’re facing a new challenge that we’ll face from every other team this season,” Crushers head coach and assistant general manager Doug Doull said. “Hopefully, we’ll be up for that challenge.”
The Crushers’ win preceded their lone road game last Friday in Woodstock against the Slammers and their lone home game this week against the Summerside Western Capitals.
“Summerside is a lot like us, younger and they play hard,” Doull said. “I like their quickness and we’ll have to match that. It should be a good game.”
The Crushers trailed the Lumberjacks twice before Jacob Hickey’s power-play goal tied the game with .9 seconds left in the third period and Dylan Riley won the game 17 seconds into overtime, sending a crowd of more than 800 fans home happy.
Michael Dill briefly tied the game for the Crushers in the first period before the Lumberjacks took a 2-1 lead before the end of the period and a 3-1 lead early in the second period.
Dill’s second goal and power-play markers by Hickey and Nick Fewer gave the Crushers a 4-3 lead, but the Lumberjacks tied the game in the last minute of the second period and retook the lead less than eight minutes into the third period.
“We didn’t make many mistakes but it seemed that every one we made ended up in the back of our net,” Doull said. “We’ll have some things we’ll have to address.”
The Crushers enjoyed a 31-19 edge in shots against the Lumberjacks, who took 12 of 18 penalties and allowed the Crushers to score on three of their eight power-play opportunities.
Alexis Roy scored both goals on Friday for the Crushers, who outshot Woodstock 52-23 with Jack Grant in the Slammers’ goal.
“We had high-quality shots but he was the difference,” said Doull, who recalled Grant as a top Hockey New Brunswick player.
The Crushers’ scheduled game on Saturday in St. Stephen, N.B. against the Aces was postponed to a later date due to a car crash in which three of their players were injured.
Crushers forward Jacob Hickey slides the puck past the post while South Shore goalie Justin Ritcey slides out of position trying to reach for it. The Crushers won the game 6-5. (Goodwin photo)