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Oakville Blades begin 2023 with a tie and a loss

Lukas Bernasiewicz
Lukas Bernasiewicz

After a two-week-long break for the holidays, the Oakville Blades were back on the ice on Friday, Jan. 6, to take on the Mississauga Chargers, hoping to start 2023 off on the right foot.

Oakville has struggled to gain consistency; the team was looking for this game to be the start of their winning ways.

Friday, Jan. 6: Mississauga Chargers @ Oakville Blades

Before the game even started, something went wrong. The officials for the game did not show up as they had scheduling conflicts, causing a game delay of 30 minutes and only two referees and two lines refs to officiate.

The game didn’t start great for the Blades when the puck finally dropped.

Oakville found themselves down 2-0 in the first period with goals by former Blade Yianni Kaidonis and Jack Ziliotto.

But the Blades didn’t give up. They were given a great opportunity near the end of the first period with a 5-on-3 breakaway.

During the two-person advantage and 10 seconds left in the period, Gleb Akimov found a loose puck and roofed it over the Chargers' goalie to bring the Blades within one.

In the second period, Oakville needed a goal to get back in the game, but Chargers goalie Braeden Shaikh just shut the door, not letting the Blades back into the game.

The Blades fired everything at the net but could not beat Shaikh. The second period ended 2-1 Chargers.

Oakville again started the third period by firing every open shot at the net.

Finally, they were able to break through after a Cole Mckenna shot was tipped in by Jack Churchill to tie the game 2-2.

Both teams tried desperately to break the tie and take the lead but couldn’t score, sending the game into overtime.

The teams exchanged great chances in both overtime periods, but each team's goaltenders stood tall and wouldn’t let a puck past them.

The game ended with a 2-2 tie with no goals in the overtime periods.

Blades defenseman Noah Patrick spoke on how the team could have generated more offence.

“I think our first period was really rough. We didn’t have enough chances, and we were breaking down a lot of plays that shouldn’t have been happening. Going forward, I think we need to stick together and stay composed.”

Lukas Bernasiewicz
Lukas Bernasiewicz

Saturday, Jan. 7: Oakville Blades @ Georgetown Raiders

After an underwhelming tie against the Chargers, Oakville travelled down the road to Georgetown for a showdown against the Raiders.

Georgetown is currently third in the North/West Conference, so the Blades had their work cut out.

The Blades started the game well, with many offensive chances in the Georgetown zone, but they couldn’t find the back of the net.

After a good start, the Blades caught a bad break in the defensive zone after a bounce off the boards landed right on the stick of Raiders forward Rhys Chiddenton to give Georgetown a 1-0 lead.

Later in the period, Georgetown took a 2-0 lead with a goal by Andrew Della Rovere. Then, the Raiders took a three-goal lead after another goal by Rhys Chiddenton to end the period at 3-0 Georgetown.

In the second period, the Blades got back in the game with a powerplay blast from Cole Mckenna on the right wing boards to bring the Blades within one.

Oakville tried desperately to get another goal before the end of the period but could not find the back of the net. The second period ended 3-1 Raiders.

In the third period, Oakville looked to get back into the game with a couple of quick goals.

The goals didn’t come for Oakville, but the Raiders scored three goals in the period to finish this game with a 6-1 win over the Blades.

Oakville’s next game will be Thursday, Jan. 12, in Brantford against the 99ers, where the team will be looking for their first win of 2023.