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LATE LAPSE COSTS SPIRIT
Stouffville, October 2, 2009
by Mike Hayakawa, yorkregion.com .

Entering the Central Canadian Hockey League season, Stouffville Spirit head coach Craig Donovan felt his club’s biggest weakness might be the blueline.
Things appeared fine until the third period of Game 7 Thursday when the Bowmanville Eagles feasted on untimely Spirit defensive miscues that produced five unanswered goals and sent the Spirit reeling with a 7-3 loss.
“For the first two periods and early in the third period I thought we took the play to them,” Donovan said. “But all of a sudden ... they scored five goals on nine shots. (Bowmanville) had loose guys getting free in our zone.
“Take away that time and we had the game under control. We played the way we wanted to play.”
The Spirit scored the game’s first goal courtesy of a shorthanded effort from Andrew Doyle, his first junior A tally.
After the Eagles tied the game at 1-1 before the end of the period, the Spirit regained the upper hand on a goal by Chris Chiste.
The Eagles countered with a goal to tie the game at 2-2 before the Spirit took their third lead of the contest on a goal from Greg Whittle before the period concluded.
Donovan was also upset with his power play, which went 0-for-10.
With the Spirit not scheduled to play their next game until Oct. 8 when they host the Dixie BeeHives, Donovan will have plenty of time to rectify what ills the club.
The Spirit’s East Division record is two wins, two shootout wins and three losses. The Eagles are tied in first place with the Markham Waxers in the East Division.

The Spirit will celebrate their Thanksgiving Day game against the Markham Waxers on Oct. 12 by offering free admission to local minor sports team players who show up wearing team jerseys and are accompanied by a paid adult. Game time at the Stouffville Arena is set for 2:30

 

One could argue that the Stouffville Spirit deserved a better fate in their first round series with the Wellington Dukes and they wouldn’t be far from wrong.
After three games in the series the Spirit trailed three games to none, having been outscored by a mire three goals. The task of winning four straight against the first place Dukes was a daunting one. Unfortunately for the Spirit and their fans it wasn’t meant to be as the roof caved in and Stouffville dropped game four 7-2.
“Our boys put up a hell of a fight. They should be proud. We just ran out of gas. It’s a tough way to end the season” Head Coach Mark Joslin said after the game
Things started out well for the home side. Christopher Chiste opened the scoring with a power play goal and for the third straight game the Spirit had a 1-0 lead.
From there on it was all Wellington. Tied at one in the first, a Cam Yuill shot snuck through Kori Coelho and with the puck lying close to the goalline, Mitch Rosborough appeared to knock it in with his hand. Referee Bain, who was out of position, counted it as a goal and the Dukes took off with that momentum.
Wellington added four in the second and another in the third to take a 7-1 lead.
Massimo Lamacchia closed out the scoring with his first of the playoffs finishing off a nice end to end rush.
The season started out rough for the Spirit. At the beginning of the year the Spirit found ways to lose games instead of win them.
Things started to get better with two key acquisitions and a change behind the bench. In mid-October Mark Joslin replace Dave D’Ammizio behind the bench and the impact was immediate. Joslin got the players to believe in themselves and the results started show.
Joslin made a bold prediction in the middle of December, saying he felt his team would go .500 the rest of the way. The coach was right. In the final 20 games the Spirit finished with a 9-8-3 record.
“There was a different feel around the room the last half of the year. Our leadership was tremendous and the guys worked hard. They deserved better in this series. At worst, we should be tied heading to game 5, not finished for the year,” added the dejected coach.
Add in the addition of goaltender Kori Coelho and suddenly the Spirit had a major building block in goal.
“Kori was incredible this year” said Joslin. “He came up with big save after big save and gave us a chance to win every night. In my opinion he is the best goaltender in this league” the coach added of his star netminder. After watching just one game Brandon Walker, who previously played for Joslin in Aurora, had an itch to return to Junior A and approached the coach about playing in Stouffville. It took Joslin all of a second to make his decision. “I told him, Brandon if you want to comeback, it’s a no brainer. I’ll sign you tomorrow” reflected Joslin.
General Manager Ken Burrows praised Walker’s leadership. “ Walker deserves a lot of credit for helping turn this team around. His heart and his aggressive style rubbed off on others,” noted Burrows. “If our young guys can carry forward with what they learned under his leadership, we’ll be in a good position next year,” the GM added.
Looking ahead to next season things look promising in Spirit Land with many players able to return. “We went 9-8-3 in our final 20 games. We showed we can be competitive. The experience we gained in this series, especially the two games in Wellington should bode well for next year” Burrows stated.

The Spirit organization would like to thank all their fans, sponsors and volunteers for all their support during the 2008-09 season.

 
 


 

 

 
PLAYOFFS RND 1
at STOUFFVILLE
FEB 11 @ 7:30 P.M.

ROUND 1 VS
PETERBOROUGH

Best of 4 of 7



GM 1 Feb 11, 7:30 PM

@ Stouffville
GM 2 Feb 13, 3:00 PM
@ Peterborough

GM 3 Feb 15, 2:30 PM
@ Stouffville
GM 4 Feb 16, 7:45 PM
@ Peterborough
GM 5 Feb 18, 7:30 PM
@ Stouffville

GM 6 Feb 19, 7:30 PM
@ Peterborough
GM 7 Feb 21, 2:30 PM
@ Stouffville

Visit INSYNC
For LIVE Video

Saturdays are Minor Hockey Nights!
Players wearing team jerseys free when accompanied by paid adult admission.  

UPCOMING

Feb 4, 2010 &
Feb 6
Whistle Radio
'THE PUB'

6:30PM LIVE BROADCASTING OF ‘THE PUB’ SHOW
7:30PM STOUFFVILLE SPIRIT JR. ‘A’ HOCKEY GAME.

Tickets:
$5.00 Spirit Lounge
$10.00 Lounge and Game
TICKETS AT THE DOOR, STOUFFVILLE ARENA


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