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Chargers Score Late Goals To Beat Blades 5-3

It was the first meeting of the year between the Oakville Blades and their rivals from just down the road, the Mississauga Chargers. Special teams played a key part in the game last night, as the Blades were unable to convert a couple of late five on three opportunities, resulting in Mississauga taking the 5-2 final victory.

In only took Mississauga four minutes to record the first goal of the game. Chargers forward Jackson Howe scored his first of the campaign on the power-play thanks to a nifty pass by line mate Stefano Alonzi in front of the net, making the score 1-0 before Oakville could even gain any momentum. Mississauga was back on the score sheet only two minutes later when Vince Figilomeni, who had four points heading into the contest tonight, scored after connecting on a great pass in front of the net, getting the disk past Brendan McGlynn. The young goaltender was playing in just his first game of the year for the Blades, and Mississauga made sure to test him early on.

Just minutes later, Oakville found themselves down a man once again, and former Charger Ross Sloan almost made goaltender Austin Washkurak pay for mishandling the puck beside the net, but #92 was quick enough to make the save. Following the penalty kill, Oakville would cut the lead in half as Sean Kohler got his third goal of the season after lifting the puck over the shoulder of Washkurak with ten minutes remaining in the first. Oakville's penalty issues continued during the first period as newcomer Joe Seney, who was just acquired last week from Kingston got called for tripping with three minutes remaining in the first twenty. Oakville's penalty kill was effective. With six seconds remaining in the period, Mississauga would take a 3-1 advantage into the dressing room thanks to a marker by Ryan Hunters.

The physical play between the two rival squads was evident throughout the first period. There was no stopping it in the second. Mississauga defenseman Tyler Cooper, a 17 year old 6'6 giant from Sudbury punished multiple Oakville forwards who attempted to get the puck anywhere near Washkurak,. Gregory Campbell was there to answer back whenever Mississauga touched down into the defending zone. Aside from strength, the game featured speed from both sides, especially from two 5'8 speedsters in Oakville's David Dischiavi and Mississauga's Nicholas Palumbo. Oakville had the best chance of the period to tie it up with Ryan Garvey right on the doorstep, however Washkurak managed to get his stick on the puck just before it crossed the line. Oakville kept pressure on, paying off as power-forward Kamil Tkaczuk got the shot right over the glove into the twine cutting the lead in half. Oakville improved their play during the middle frame, good enough to make the game a close one at 3-2 after two.

Tension began to pickup during the third period. Almost every hit resulted in a shoving match not amounting to much. Following a late hit to Dischiavi six minutes into the third, Chargers coach Joe Washkurak called a timeout to calm down his squad who already had two men in the box. Garvey had a fantastic chance thirty seconds into the man advantage from the left side of the net, but Washkurak managed to get across fast enough to make a great glove save. Play continued. Thirty seconds later, Washkurak made an almost identical glove stop on Sloan, keeping the former Charger off the score sheet. He would make a couple of good blocker saves before the penalty kill ended stopping Oakville from getting the tying marker.

Oakville got another five on three late in the period, but Mississauga made it tough on Oakville, recording two shorthanded breakaways in a minute span. A minute after killing the first of the two penalties, Stefano Alonzi got time in the sin bin for charging when he dangerously hit Sloan into the boards behind the Mississauga net. Again, Mississauga managed to kill off the Oakville power-play, getting their own 5 on 3 thanks to back to back Oakville penalties late in the frame. This included a four minute minor to Dischiavi for spearing. Mississauga's special teams struck again as a result, scoring a fourth goal with just under two minutes to go for re-assurance. With an empty net, Oakville was unable to get the puck into the opposing zone. This allowed another marker, handing the 5-2 victory to the Chargers.

Oakville's next game is in Newmarket on Thursday, September 19th. Come see the Blades take on the Hurricanes at Ray Twinney Arena at 7:30 pm!