EDMONTON, ALBERTA - The Junior Bruins headed west on Friday and Saturday (June 28/29) in anticipation of kicking off the 2013 Brick Super Novice International Invitational on July 1.
The team headed into the Brick coming off a tournament title at the Icebreaker just last weekend. With another solid week of practices behind them the team is prepared for the best youth hockey tournament in the world.
Sunday, June 30 Junior Bruins-4 BC Jr. Canucks-3
The B’s headed to the Mall for a final tuneup against the BC Jr. Canucks. The Canucks are one of the pre-tournament favorites and would be a good test for the black and gold. The B’s got off to a sluggish start and found themselves down 3-1 heading into the third period. The line of Bryan Roy, Culin Wilson an Nick Ring provided the spark the team needed scoring all four of the teams goals in leading the comeback and earning the “W”.
Ring, who scored in the first period, scored twice more in the third. Sandwiched in between Ring’s two third period tallies were a Wilson goal.
Layne Browning an Ryan Kazmouz split duties in net and both looked sharp.
Monday, July 1 Junior Bruins-2 Team Brick Alberta-7
The B’s played the host Team Brick Alberta in their opening round robin game on Monday morning and the hometown boys were too much for the B’s. Alberta was all over the B’s jumping out to a 4-0 lead after two periods and out shooting them by a 21-6 margin.
Collin Wenrich got the B’s on the board early in the third scoring a power play goal but Alberta ripped off three more before Will Elias finished off the scoring.
Tuesday, July 2 Junior Bruins-5 Montreal Ice Storm-0
As bad as Monday was, Tuesday was the opposite. The B’s came out flying and rolled over the Storm from start to finish.
Culin Wilson got the scoring started when he took a Nick Ring pass in transition and cut into the center of the Storm zone and ripped a shot to make it 1-0. Just five minutes later it was Ring who banged home a Wilson rebound. The play started in the B’s zone with a nice breakout pass from Luke Lappe to Wilson who worked it into the Storm end and got the puck to the net.
The teams played a relatively even second frame but the third was more of the same as the first period played out. Landon Greatorex forced a turnover and went in and made it 3-0 and put the B’s in control. The game was put completely out of reach when Wilson scored his second of the game with Ring assisting. Nick Peters finished off the scoring when he netted a power play goal in the final few minutes. Nolan Joyce and Will Elias picked up helpers on the Peters goal.
Ryan Kazmouz went the distance making 14 saves en route to the shutout.
Wednesday, July 3 Junior Bruins-3 California 03′s-4
It was East vs. West on hump day at the Brick as the Boston based Bruins and LA based Team California got it on. It looked like deja vu all over again as the B’s came out flat and spotted Cali a 3-0 lead in the first 17 minutes of the game.
The Bruins dug in and from that point on carried the play and fought their way back into the game. Nick Roukounakis scored a power play marker halfway through the third to get the B’s on the board. The teams retreated to the locker rooms at the conclusion of the second and the B’s used the ice cut to get back to basics and start skating.
Dylan Fogg scored to bring the game to 3-2 just a minute into the third. Landon Greatorex did a lot of the dirty work on the play winning two one on one battles on the right wing wall keeping the play alive. He then got a hard shot to the net that the Cali goalie couldn’t handle and the rebound was kicked out into the high slot where Fogg then hammered it back to the net for the tally. On the ensuing face-off California struck back to take back their two goal lead.
The B’s kept fighting and got it back to a one goal game when Collin Wenrich finished off a great rush and ripped a shot past the Cali goalie with just under 9 minutes to go. The Bruins carried the play in those final minutes and had a couple “Grade A” chances to tie it up but couldn’t find the back of the net.
Team California hung on for the 4-3 win and put the B’s behind the 8 ball if they are to move on to the playoff round. The B’s playoff run starts Thursday as they have a must win game with the Winnipeg Jr. Jets.
Thursday, July 4 Junior Bruins-4 Winnipeg Jr. Jets-2
The B’s made the most of their opportunities in the first period and were up 2-1 despite being out shot 13-7. While Layne Browning was making some big saves in the pipes it was CJ Monturio and Cully Wilson doing the scoring to stake them to a 2-1 lead.
Monturio tipped a Nick Peters shot from the right point to get the Bruins on the board. The Jr. Jets struck back just 30 seconds later to tie the game. The scoring flurry continued when 40 seconds later Wilson put the B’s up 2-1.
The two teams felt each other out in the second frame with each only registering 5 shots. The Jets made it 2-2 when they scored the lone tally of the 2nd period. The teams would head to the dressing rooms to regroup for the third period. Anything but a regulation win for the Bruins and picking up 3 points all but puts the B’s playoffs hopes on the shelf till 2014 at the Brick.
As they have done all season, they showed their resiliency and grit and played a terrific 3rd period scoring twice within a minute to pull away and pick up a 3 point win. Bryan Roy, on Nick Ring and Wilson assists scored the game winner and Nick Roukounakis scored the insurance marker on an unassisted effort.
This puts the B’s record at 2-2 and they control their own destiny to advance to the playoff round on Saturday. It looks like the team needs a Friday sweep of the CT. Yankees and Pro Hockey to edge out Team Brick Alberta for the final playoff spot from their division. There is a chance the team slides in with something less than two wins on Friday but they would require help from other teams.
Friday, July 5 Junior Bruins-4 CT. Yankees-0
The B’s and their rivals to the south were set to play their third game of the season and the B’s were looking to avenge a 2-1 loss in May at the Blue Chip tournament. Their opening game of the year was a 5-3 B’s win at the Toronto Invitational in April.
This game was “all Bruins” as the team continued their strong play from a day before and shutout the Yanks by a 4-0 score. The game was close heading into the 3rd with the Bruins holding onto a 1-0 lead courtesy of a Bryan Roy goal in the opening frame.
The B’s defense played one of their best games and held the Yanks to only 6 shots over the first two periods. In the third, the line of Landon Greatorex, Dylan Fogg and Jack Hughes took over and scored three times to pull away and put the game out of reach. Greatorex and Hughes combined for two short handed goals only 5 seconds apart to get the game to 3-0 in the middle of the period. With just a couple minutes to go Hughes finished off a Fogg set up to finish the scoring.
The B’s now have to regroup for their nightcap with Pro Hockey. If Team Brick Alberta loses to Montreal this afternoon, the Bruins are automatically in regardless of the outcome with PRo Hockey. An Alberta win means the B’s would need to get a 3 point win and anything short of that means they would lose that final playoff spot.
Friday, July 5 Junior Bruins-3 Pro Hockey Development-1
Pro Hockey was playing for 1st place in the division and “bye” into the semi finals on Saturday. They brought a 5-0 record into the game and were a pre-tournament favorite. Team Brick Alberta beat Montreal so that gives them 11 points and a 4-2 record. The Bruins 3-2 record and 9 points means the B’s need a full three points (regualtion win) to get to the 4-2 mark and give them 12 points. A win in OT would give the B’s 11 points but they lose the head to head tie breaker with Alberta.
How did this collection of talented players answer the tough test in front of them? With Flying colors.
The B’s played their best game of the year in a terrific game against a tough, talented and well coached team.
Pro Hockey came out hard and out shot the B’s by a 9-4 margin in the opening period but Ryasn Kazmouz turned aside all 9 shots. The Bruins, who got better with each period throughout the tournament, dominated PHD in the second putting 13 shots on net and yielding just 3. The defense core of Nolan Joyce, Tyler Rubin, Luke Lappe, Joe Fleming, Will Elias and Joe Fleming were suffocating and played mistake free hockey and were the key to the B’s win.
Colin Wenrich got the team on the board in the second period when he finished off a broken play in the offensive zone. The Bruins hade 15 minutes between themselves and a first ever trip to the playoffs for a Bruins team at the Brick.
Just two minutes in Culin Wilson made it a 2-0 lead when he scored on a Bryan Roy feed. Pro Hockey, knowing how important that “bye” is, turned up the heat and came at the B’s hard and cut the lead in half with just under 5 minutes to go in the game. Once again, the 2003 Junior Bruins Brick team responded and made it a 3-1 score when Nick Roukounakis scored two minutes later.
The team salted away the game and earned their way into the playoffs. One sign of a strong team is how they finish games and how they play in the third period. This team was at its best when the pressure was on. Including the opening scrimmage against Vancouver the B’s outscored their opponents by a whopping 17-5 mark. Below are the third period scores from their last 7 games:
Sunday B’s-3 Vancouver -0
Monday B’s-2 Alberta-3
Tuesday B’s-3 Montreal-0
Wednesday B’s-2 California-1
Thursday B’s-2 Winnipeg-0
Friday B’s-3 Ct. Yankees-0
Friday B’s-2 Pro Hockey-1
Saturday, July 6 Junior Bruins-3 Vancouver-4
The B’s took the ice for their quarterfinal tilt coming off their best game of the season and bringing a season long record of 21-6-2. The team had trouble right from the drop of the puck and got behind 2-0 after the first period. They gave up a penalty shot goal as well as another shorthanded goal.
The identity of this team is to fight back and they did, playing a better second period and making the game 2-1 on a Colin Wenrich goal. The B’s power play woes continued when Vancouver went a man down two more times in the period and the Canucks scored on both penalties. With the score 4-1 and giving up 4 shorthanded goals things looked bleak for the ’03′s. AS they have done all season and tournament, when they easily could have thrown in the towel, they came out flying and mounted their comeback.
In the third the B’s out shot the western Canadians by a 10-5 mark and had them on their heels in the final 5 minutes. Wenrich scored his second of the game, a power play one no less, with just 4:04 to play with assists to Dylan Fogg and Culin Wilson. Just 1:07 later it was Wilson who cut the deficit to one with 2:17 to play. The pressure continued to mount and the B’s had a couple more shots in the waning seconds but couldn’t complete the comeback.
“While we wish we could have played longer, this group did something that no Boston based Brick team has done in 9 years in advancing to the playoff round. WE had a great group of 01′s in 2011 and 02′s in 2012 and they came within a goal of advancing. This is the toughest tournament to advance in and what these players were able to do and the manner in which they did it, is remarkable,” coach Chris Masters commented. “For all intents and purposes, our playoffs started Thursday with the Winnipeg game. We knew we had to win three straight and if we didn’t win in regulation, we would need help that wasn’t likely. So, with their backs against the wall, they went out and beat three strong teams.”
“This is a special tournament and a special team and they have laid the tracks for the teams that follow them with the bar set high.”
2013 Junior Bruins Brick team
#2 Luke Lappe
#3 Dylan Fogg
#4 Jack Hughes
#7 CJ Monturio
#12 Culin Wilson
#15 Nick Peters
#17 Zach Glass
#26 Landyn Greatorex
#27 Nolan Joyce
#28 Will Elias
#32 Ryan Kazmouz
#35 Layne Browning
#37 Nick Ring
#44 Colin Wenrich
#50 Joe Fleming
#77 Nick Roukounakis
#81 Bryan Roy
#97 Tyler Rubin