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Men’s hockey loses eight in a row

Losing skid persists as injuries add up

Men's hockey. Photo by Martina Marien
Men's hockey. Photo by Martina Marien

On Nov. 12, Dalhousie’s men’s hockey team found yet another way to lose.

In what was perhaps a testament to Dal’s disappointing fortunes this season, Tigers forward Jacob Johnston mistakenly fired a wrist shot into his team’s empty net while aiming to round the puck along the boards in his own zone with just 46 seconds left in the game, giving UPEI their sixth and final goal to beat the Tigers 6 – 3. Panthers forward Jordan Knox was credited with the goal.

The loss extends the Tigers losing streak to eight games. With a total of four points on the season, Dal now sits in last place in the AUS, behind the St. Thomas Tommies.

The night before the Tigers stumbled against CIS No. 1 ranked UNB as well, losing 9 – 2.

Despite these struggles, Dal remains optimistic.

“The last few games we have been putting things together and getting a lot of offensive chances on our shifts,” said Johnston after the weekend defeats. “The problem is, the puck is not going in the net. I don’t know how to fix it but we just have to keep trying and working and hopefully things will go in the net, and maybe we will be able to have a little bit of a turnaround.”

A cause for the Tigers lack of scoring may be the rash of injuries they have suffered since the start of the season. Forwards Francois Gauthier, Patrick Daley, Kyle Decoste, Costa Zafiris, Brad McConnell, defensemen Zachary Firlotte and starting goalie Bobby Nadeau are all sidelined.

Also out of the lineup in Saturday’s game was forward Shea Kewin. He was one of the team’s leading scorers last season. Head coach Pete Belliveau said it was “a game-time decision” to not dress Kewin.

Dal rookie and third-string goalie Phillip Wright saw the first start of his university career Saturday.

“I felt good in there,” said Wright, who had 28 saves in the match. “It was my first game and there are a lot of emotions going into it. I mean, bottom line is, we came up short. It’s never fun to lose but I was glad to get in the net.”

Taking a 3 – 1 lead into the second period, the Panthers had a response for everything the Tigers threw at them. The second period was probably one of the best the Tigers have played all season, producing a strong forecheck and getting shots to the net, but they only had one goal to show for it.

Dal forward Trevor MacKenzie scored 6:28 into the period to trail by only a goal, down 3 – 2; however, Panthers forward Matt Carter replied just 36 seconds later to maintain UPEI’s two goal advantage. Jared Gomes of the Panthers, MacKenzie and UPEI’s Knox each had a goal in the third.

Arfa Ayub, Staff Contributor
Arfa Ayub, Staff Contributor
Originally from Lahore, Pakistan, Arfa moved to Canada at the age of nine. She spent a year in Toronto before moving to Halifax. In the East Coast, not sure how (must be a Canadian thing!), but she began to watch and love hockey. Arfa started writing for the Gazette in her last year of high school as part of a cooperative education internship. Once she graduated, she came to Dal to study Political Science. Aside from continuing to write for the paper, Arfa completed an internship with Global Maritimes.

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