2009 - 2010 OFSSA Hockey

St. Christopher Cyclones
Chicago Champions!

submitted photo


The St. Christophers boys hockey team concluded their highly successful hockey season by winning The Chicago Spring Classic Hockey Tournament hosted in Chicago between April 23-25.

The team attended this season concluding tournament and had an absolutely fantastic experience in Chicago. A lot of great sight-seeing, (magnificent mile, museum and aquarium visits), and some great dining (deep dish Chicago pizza).

But it was the hockey that was by far the best. In a terrific season which saw the Cyclones advancing to the OFSAA quarter finals, the team travelled to Chicago to enjoy one last team experience before some of their senior team members graduate and move on at the end of this academic year.

In the Chicago tournament, St. Chris had 2 wins and 1 loss in round robin play with their 4-0 game loss occurring on the the day of the teams Friday arrival in Chicago. It was a 9:50pm game versus what turned out to be their strongest competition in the tournament.

The St. Chris round-robin record allowed the team to advance to the semi-final game on Sunday, which St. Chris won by a score of 3-1.

The table was set for an excellent Championship game with St. Chris playing the Chicago team they had lost to in round robin play.

The final game was truly a hockey battle royale. The play was fast and furious with each team exchanging excellent scoring opportunities in the first period, but both goalies denied these offensive efforts.

Chicago managed to score two early goals in the second period on consecutive powerplays with an extremely potent powerplay unit.

St. Chris answered late in the second with a well executed power-play goal of their own. The score stood 2-1 for Chicago going into the third.

Down 2-1, the Cyclones took a minor penalty with 3:50 minutes remaining in the game. St. Christopher successfully killed the penalty and with 1:35 left in the game Chicago took a minor penalty committed in the Chicago zone. With the face-off in the Chicago zone, St. Chris took a time-out, pulled their goalie for the extra attacker and lined up for an offensive face-off 6 attackers to Chicago's 4.

St. Chris lost the draw, and the Chicago defenceman who was killing a penalty took his shot from the end boards of the Chicago zone. The puck travelled the length of the ice just missing the Cyclone net by a few inches. With the puck still in play, the St. Chris players regrouped in their zone, broke-out and and re-established pressure in the Chicago zone, and set it up for a point shot by Cyclone defenceman Randy Harding.

Harding fired a low, hard shot along the ice that found the back of the net to tie the game with 43 seconds remaining.

With St. Chris goalie Pat Brennan back in net, St. Chris won the ensuing face-off at center-ice. The St. Chris puck carrier gained the Chicago zone and took a shot on net where Cyclone captain Pietro Restivo managed to knock in the rebound with 10 seconds remaining in the game. The Chicago team was stunned. In a span of 1 minute & 25 seconds the Chicago squad went from what appeared to be a 2-1 championship victory to a 3-2 loss.

It was a great accomplishment for the Cyclones over a very worthy opponent. Leading up to the championship game, not only was the Chicago team undefeated, they had not given up a goal against until facing the Cyclones in the championship game.