Photo by Christian Bender

Rams split series with UQTR

By Cara Gilhula

TORONTO - The Rams split the series with UQTR after a 3-2 overtime loss in their second game of the weekend at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.

After coming away with a 7-2 win last night, the Rams were ready to get the job finished for a second time against UQTR. Unfortunately, that wasn’t exactly the case for the Rams.

“For us we felt like we came out a little bit slow yesterday and we wanted to build on the way we played in the second half and bring it in today. Unfortunately, we lacked energy and I don't think we executed within our systems very well and as a result of that, we ended up chasing the game a little bit and not scoring the way we're capable of by putting the puck in the net,” says head coach Johnny Duco.

It was like the game had continued from last night as both the Rams and UQTR were battling hard in each other’s zones, presenting only turn overs for game play, and starting slow in the first period.

Luckily for the Rams, defenseman Jared Walsh (Toronto, Ont.) gained control and made a tape to tape pass to Devon Paliani (LaSalle, Ont.). Paliani then found John Carpino (Maple, Ont.), who flew down the wing, past UQTR and made a beauty shot to open the scoring for the Rams.

The Rams continued to press the UQTR defense to earn another scoring chance, but could not get the bounce again, which was familiar to last night’s game.

UQTR made their way into the Rams zone and played some tic-tac-toe to get past the Rams. Olivier Caouette was the one to set the draw for the first period at 1-1.

Entering the second period, Alex Basso (Toronto, Ont.) was escorted off the ice after receiving a hit to the head. One could only be hopeful that the Rams powerplay would be a success once again like we’ve seen in the past. Regrettably, Garrett Forrest (Ashburn, Va.) tried to play the puck and lost it to UQTR. Nicolas Lariviere took advantage of Forrest being out of his net and scored the short handed goal to lead the Rams 2-1. Basso returned to the ice not long after.

The Rams continued to have a number of power play chances, except nothing made way past UQTR. With a few penalties of their own, the Rams looked to their defense to get them through the second period after trailing UQTR 2-1.

During the third period, the Rams continued to trail UQTR, until the last five minutes of play. Here, the Rams picked up speed, and started to use each other at the point. In the last two minutes of play, Matt Mistele (Whitby, Ont.) found Basso at the point while being pushed down by UQTR. Basso wound up for a shot but made a fake to pass to Mathew Santos (Toronto, Ont.). Then, Santos fired and scored top shelf to tie the game 2-2. This was Santos' seventh goal of the season.

The Rams entered their second overtime of the season.

Once overtime began, the Rams quickly took on an offensive approach, until a turnover changed the pace of the game. In the corner of the UQTR zone the Rams lost the puck. UQTR made their way up the ice, past the Rams offense, and Deven St-Hilaire beat the defense for a one on one opportunity with Forrest. St-Hilaire scored at 1:54 into the overtime to tie the series with the Rams.

“We were chasing the play a little bit today because we were losing. UQTR is a desperate hockey team because they came all this way, and didn’t want to leave empty-handed, and you saw that they wanted it a little more than we did today,” says Duco.

Looking ahead, the Rams will take on the Brock Badgers at the Mattamy Athletic Centre on November 1st at 7:15 p.m. On Friday the Rams will travel to York University at Canlan Ice Sports for their 7:00 p.m. game start.

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