Raw is the only way to explain the games on Monday night. The VRW were up to their necks in penalty trouble and the Hitmen’s powerplay makes them pay. The Thunder showed the heart and grit and sandpaper that make them the team that has reached the finals in every DP season to date as they out gun the Express 8-3. The Orangemen rebound from a loss to the Polar Bears with a 4-1 victory over the Thunder on Sunday night. The Hawks continue to impress with a 6-5 slip into the night victory. We’re getting down to the nitty, gritty games where a point here, two point there will move you up and down three or four spots in a single night. No one ever rolls over in the Premier Division so from here on in its time to pull up your socks and dig deep.
After the trade an instant rivalry was born between the Metro Orangemen and Toronto Thunder. These two would battle before the blockbuster and the rivalry has just increased four levels. The Orangemen have gotten the better of the Thunder in their first two meetings with a 4-3 shootout victory and now a 4-1 positive result. Terry Roache with a goal and an assist does the damage on the night as he scores the game winner for the division leading Orangemen. The Thunder need to turn the tides as they sit out of the playoffs for the first time in years. With sixteen points still up for grabs the Thunder are far from out of race but they do need to gain some ground. With them having the doubleheader week they have the chance to do so.
The North York Hitmen work in streaks. They opened the season with three wins, lost five, now have won three to jump right back into the thick of the race. Their latest victory versus the Vaughan Red Wings was thanks to two things, the Wings getting into penalty trouble and three PP goals, the game winner from Anthony Zepperi. The Wings would pick up sixteen minutes of penalties in the second period, playing only four minutes of even strength hockey. The loss drops the Wings to fourth place and they lead the division with 275 penalty minutes through eleven games. Both these teams are looking for a top two finish to earn a first round bye in the playoffs. The Hitmen will have a tough task ahead as they travel to Mississauga to face the Hawks in a battle for second place.
If the Toronto Thunder were going to have a statement game this was the one they needed to pull out. The task would not be easy as the Brampton Express would be the opponent in the back half of the double header. On this wild night the Thunder would score eight goals, production we are used to from this group, as they may have turned around their season with a convincing 8-3 victory over the Express. Paul Duarte and linemate Marco Goncalves each have big nights as they accumulate five points each. Captain Danny Filice was not far off as he gets two goals and two assists. The Express find themselves in fifth place after the loss. Sniper Frankie Giustini fires two goals in the losing cause. In the nightcap the Toronto Polar Bears were looking to up end their second top seeded opponent in two weeks.
The Mississauga Hawks would make the trip to Downsview in hopes of holding on to their second seed. Defenceman Mark Elvidge fires a hat trick to lead the Hawks to a 6-5 win. The Toronto Polar Bears battled back to close the gap to within one goal with 1:16 left as Jeff Wilson scores his fifteenth goal to add to his league leading total. The Hawks with the win sit two points behind the Orangemen. The Hawks continue to strive forward and will face a tough challenge next week as the Hitmen come to town. The Bears must put this one behind them and prepare for the Express who beat them 8-2 the last time these two met.
Week 10 Top Goaltenders
1. Dan Giffin (Thunder) - gives team big boost with goaltending
2. Anthony Flores (Hitmen) - 3-0 with new Premier club
3. Paul Zarnett (Hawks) - last minute save secures full points
Week 10 Top Performers
1. Marco Goncalves (Thunder) - five point game
2. Mark Elvidge (Hawks) - hat trick versus Bears
3. Paul Duarte (Thunder) - five assists in 8-3 victory
Week 10 Player of the Week
The player of the week gaining five points and more importantly breathing life back in to the Thunder sails is forward Marco Goncalves of the Toronto Thunder. Congratulations Marco and see Premier Commissioner for your Player of the Week award.