By Ty Dilello, Niverville Citizen
Featured image by Scott Stroh, Junior Night in Manitoba
The fans at the CRCC were in for a treat Sunday afternoon as the home team won their third straight game, holding on to defeat the OCN Blizzard by a 7–5 score. The win improves their record to 7–6–0 on the year, putting them in fourth place in the MJHL’s East Division, and marking the first time they’ve climbed above .500 this season.
In this chippy game, heavy with penalties between two teams who at points seemed to have it out for each other, Brendan Kerr led the way. Kerr netted a pair of goals on the afternoon. Kennan Reyelts, Brett Tataryn, Desmond Johnson, Eric Martin, and Carson Reed also found the back of the net for Niverville.
Ethan Kadatz made 31 saves on 36 shots in goal for the Nighthawks.
It was an especially big win because the Nighthawks were coming off the back half of a back-to-back from the night before.
“We have a good program here with our sports science coach Rob Pambrun, who is making sure that we’re fed well and taken care of post-game,” says Nighthawks head coach Kelvin Cech. “We got home late last night, but we were geared up for this game and wanted to have some energy. We were able to wear OCN down as the game went along, as they had just played three games in two and a half days themselves.”
The Nighthawks found themselves down 5–4 at the start of the third period but managed to get three goals past the OCN netminder in quick succession to pull out the 7–5 win.
Defenceman Eric Martin was credited with the game-winning goal.
“We were just rolling in the third period and came at them in waves,” Cech says. “I thought it was just a matter of time before we would get some goals to win that game.”
“It was pretty awesome scoring that goal!” adds Eric Martin. “Kerr came around the net and took a guy with him and gave me the puck in a good spot. It gave me a nice bounce and ended up in the net.”
The Nighthawks now have some time off before they return to action next Saturday night (October 29) at home against the top-ranked Portage Terriers.
“We’re going to enjoy this, as it’s been a grind the last few weeks,” says Cech. “Winning three in a row is great, so they deserve a day off to relax and enjoy each other’s company. And then back to practice on Tuesday and try to get better throughout the week.”