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Mooretown Flags Heading into Holidays on a High Note
Saturday December 20, 2014


The Mooretown Flags celebrated Christmas early after winning their fourth straight game by defeating one of the top teams in the league, the Amherstburg Admirals 7 - 3 in Mooretown on Saturday night.


"Tonight's game was of the four, the game I saw as a real challenge,"  Head Coach Blake Morrison said. "Amherstburg is a good hockey team.  When we played them last time in their rink it was a real lesson to us and I thought tonight's game would be a measure to see how far we have come from that game to this game and I couldn't be more please with what I saw over the 60 minutes of the hockey that was played. The results speaks for itself, I can't be anymore happy with that."


At 1:14 into the game Amherstburg scored the first goal but later ran into penalty troubles that gave the Flags the edge.  At 5:35 Dan Lumley scored the first power play goal getting the shot off Frankie White. The second goal was scored at 9:22 that was slapped in by Lumley and it appeared to go off the crossbar but the referee saw it differently and the Flags went up 2 - 1.  (Note: Frankie White was given the goal but he was in the corner and made the pass to Lumley.)

Amherstburg tied the game at 13:59 and the period finished with the two teams tied at 2.

Scoring in the first for Amherstburg were Mark and Luke Gangnon.



In the second and on a power play Lumley scored the third goal with Brett Thompson and White assisting at 6:06.  As the announcement was being made over the sound system with 14 seconds off the clock Caden Fleming scored the 4th goal with Ethan Dupont and Austin Hewton assisting.

Amherstburg scored at 12:34 that turned out to be their last goal of the game by Luke Gangnon.

At 13:42 Justin Vanbuskirk made a perfect pass from deep in his own end up to Sam Jasmin waiting just over the red line and he got the break and skated in for the picture perfect goal.  Netminder Brandon Johnson who was celebrating his 20th birthday earned an assist on the play.  Before the period was over Ben Morrison added the 6th goal with Vanbuskirk and Lumley earning the assist.


Third period action saw Joe DeSena score the only goal of the period at 1:26 with Lumley picking up his 5th point of the game with an assist along with Daytona Harrison.



Mooretown took a total of 30 minutes in penalties on 11 infractions, Amherstburg took 27 minutes on 9 infractions.  Amherstburg had nine power play opportunities and the Flags penalty kill line stopped all nine attempts. The Flags scored three on five opportunities.


The Flags outshot Amherstburg 32 - 24.  Flags netminder Brandon Johnson who made several key saves that left the crowd saying "how did he do that" earned the well deserved win.  Amherstburg net was shared by Gianfranco Donato and Arren Romerial.



Morrison is please with how the team is progressing. "It's a combination of events.  I don't don't know what the expectation was when I arrived here given how things were it was plainly clear to me that we weren't able to turn this season around instantly.  There had to be some things put in place and allow those thing time to take root.  And that's what happened."


One of the changes that Morrison brought to the team was recruiting Chris Rocca to the coaching staff.

"I've known Chris for a long time, in fact I was his high school teacher.  Chris was mature beyond his years, he has great leadership skills and his hockey resume speaks for himself."


Rocca a Lambton AAA alumni was drafted in 2006 by the Guelph Storm played Jr. C, Jr. B and  University CIS hockey while studying at Western University.


"He brings a really keen eye for the game and what I like about it Chris is closer in age but not so close that they have a healthy respect for him and his hockey experience and what he brings in terms in telling and explaining to these young players, situation he himself as been in, in years past."

With changes to the roster and coaching staff Morrison said that things are starting to show their promise.


"Now the obligation is on all of us as a team.  Meaning from coaching staff, the executive, players, everyone that contributes to the team to make it as good as it is we all have a bigger responsibility as we go into the new year to build on what we have set the standard for our team."


The Flags are in 8th place in the standings with a record of 9-18-2-0 and after the holiday break they will face the the top team in the league the Essex 73's (24-2-1-1) at home on Saturday December 27 at 7:30 pm.

"We're not happy with 8th place," Morrison said "Every player in that room knows that and were going to be working hard to be climbing up the standings. So those teams in 7th, 6th and 5th they better be hearing our footsteps because were inspiring to end the season somewhere in that place in the standings."





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