Gill’s four-goals pace Grand Falls-Windsor past Royals
Andre Gill, as you might expect, couldn’t be happier with his four-goal performance Sunday which gave his Grand Falls-Windsor Cataracts a 5-2 win over Western Royals at Joe Byrne Memorial Stadium and a two-game lead in the best-of-seven Newfoundland Senior Hockey League (NSHL) West Division final.
Clarenville Caribous winger Andrew Sweetland tries to go through the legs of Mount Pearl Blades’ rearguard Roger Pender during Game 2 of the teams’ Newfoundland Senior Hockey League semi-final series Sunday night at the Clarenville Events Centre. The Caribous won the contest 6-4. — Photo by Kenn Oliver/The Telegram
The Cataracts won 4-3 in overtime Saturday night.
“I capitalized on the chances I got, but it was a good night all around,” said Gill.
The Cats’ right winger, who had about six scoring chances in the game, said the Cataracts were around the net all game long.
Game 3 is set for 7:30 p.m. next Saturday at Hodder Memorial Centre in Deer Lake with Game 4 set for 2 p.m. Sunday in Deer Lake.
Gill, who led the league with 24 goals this season, scored twice on the power play in the first period while adding single markers in the second and third period.
He said the game started off very physical.
“We killed off a couple of five-on-threes in the first period,” which he said was all about special teams.
“I think capitalizing on those power plays set the tone for the rest of the game,” said Gill. “It was nice to get a couple of those early.”
Gill said the team used its speed “all over the ice” which was another key to the win.
“We got in on the forecheck hard and played a physical style of game which we really haven’t been playing all year,” he said.
Gill said he expects even closer games next weekend.
“They are always tougher in their barn, but we’ve got some good confidence going in with these two wins.”
Brandon Street had the other goal for the Cats.
Parker Deighan and Colin Power, with 16 seconds left in the game, had the goals for the Royals.
Western outshot Grand Falls-Windsor 32-31. Cats’ goalie AJ Whiffen picked up the win over Bryan Gillis. Western went 0-9 on the power play.
Meanwhile, Cats’ left winger Andrew Pearcey is listed as “day-to-day” after picking up an injury in Saturday night’s game. Pearcey didn’t play Sunday.
In the East Division final at Clarenville Events Centre Sunday night, Clarenville Caribous defeated the Mount Pearl H.J. Bartlett Electric Blades 6-4 to take a 2-0 lead in the series.
The series continues with Game 3 scheduled for 8 p.m. Saturday at the Glacier in Mount Pearl. Game 4 is set for 2:30 p.m. the Clarenville Events Centre Sunday.
Clarenville outshot Mount Pearl 55-28.
The division winners will play for the Herder Memorial Championship.
Caribous 4, Blades 3 (OT)
At the Glacier in Mount Pearl, Terry Ryan scored 10:34 into the extra frame to give the Clarenville Caribous a 4-3 victory over the Mount Pearl H.J. Bartlett Electric Blades in Game 1 of the best-of-seven East Division semifinal at the Glacier..
Clarenville grabbed a 2-0 first-period lead on goals by Ryan Desrosiers and Keith Delaney, but the Blades went ahead in the second as Ryan Graham scored, then set up markers by Spencer Jezegou and Dane Marshall.
Andrew Sullivan forced overtime by scoring for the Caribous with 6 1/2 minutes left in regulation and Ryan ended it with a slap shot that got by Mount Pearl goalie Ryan Mior.
Cataracts 4, Royals 3 (OT)
At Joe Byrne Memorial Stadium, where the West Division series opened, the Grand Falls-Windsor Cataracts got by the Western Royals.
The Cataracts’ Rob Hennigar, the NSHL’s top point-getter in the regular season, tallied less than two minutes into OT.
The Royals got a game-tying goal on a power-play goal by Deighan with 42 seconds left in regulation, but the Cats pulled it out when Hennigar scored his second goal of the night early in overtime.
Western jumped ahead 2-0 as Justin Barbour and Scott Doody registered first-period goals, but Hennigar and linemate Cam Fergus brought the home side even in the second and Andrew Brennan put the Cataracts ahead 3-2 at 16:39 of the third. That looked like it might be the winning goal before Deighan tallied in the final minute.