Listowel Cyclones head coach Jesse Cole spent several minutes meeting with his leadership group after Friday’s home loss to Stratford.
The discussion focused on slow starts, which have plagued the Cyclones throughout the season and hurt them against the Warriors. Listowel allowed two first-period goals – which is the teams average – and trailed 3-0 before mounting a comeback that ultimately fell short.
Whatever the message, it was received.
“When you start a game, everything is even,” Cole said after Sunday night’s 4-1 win at the Allman. “That’s the only time it’s even all game, and we’ve been giving up a lot of momentum and getting on our heels. A lot of times when we have lost games it’s because of our first (period).”
Cole felt his players stuck to a simple style in the rematch against Stratford. Listowel scored first before allowing a late goal in the opening frame, but the Cyclones outshot the Warriors 10-8.
“There were some things we still need to work on,” Cole said, “but I was happy with the response and their effort.”
Part of the reason for slow starts is a lack of experience, Cole said.
“The one thing I do like is I believe every game we’re in everybody has a chance to win, and I think it’s teaching our young guys that you gotta play 60 minutes. I think it’s part of the maturity of the group at times. We’ve gotta learn to start games on time and try to get the opposition on their heels, and that’s part of growing up and being a more mature team.”
Carter McIlwain opened and closed the scoring for Listowel (13-5-1-1). Craig McKague and Tyler Hotson also scored. Josh Schindler added two assists.
Dixon Grimes made 23 saves.
Sheldon Pryce scored for Stratford (11-7-1-2), which had its six-game win streak snapped. Rhett Kimmel made 17 saves.
Stratford went 0-for-5 on the power play, and Listowel was 0-for-3.
NOTES: Warriors captain Malcolm McLeod served the first of a five-game suspension for his role in a fight on Friday. He’s eligible to return Nov. 29 against Brantford Stratford hosts Elmira this Friday Attendance was 759.
St. Marys gained a point from its weekend games with a 3-2 overtime loss Sunday in Chatham.
Following Friday’s defeat at home, the Lincolns fell to (13-5-1-2) with their defeat against the Maroons. Cayse Ton scored both St. Marys goals. Blair Butchart and Mason Mantzavrakos assisted on both. Kyle Curtin made 31 saves in the loss.
Dallas Maurovic (in overtime), Tate Bowden and Braeden Caetano scored for the Maroons. Kevin Linker made 39 saves.
Each team went 1-for-3 on the power play.
First, the Tavistock Braves’ win streak ended. Then their undefeated streak stopped.
Still, the Braves picked up three of six points after a three-game weekend. Tavistock had won 11 straight before a 2-2 tie Friday in New Hamburg.
Saturday at home, Braves’ goalie Carter Roth made 51 saves in a 2-1 win over the Norwich Merchants. Derek Jensen and Justin Labrie scored in the victory.
Jamie Damignani replied for Norwich. Zach Johnston made 33 saves for the Merchants.
Each team was 0-for-3 on the power play.
Sunday in Wellesley, the Applejacks ended the Braves’ 13-game undefeated streak with a 5-2 win. Steven DeGroot scored twice for Wellesley, while Troy Vandenbussche, Zach Ribeiro and Zachary Lyons also scored. Kailem Chappelle made 40 saves.
Tanner Johnson had a goal and assist in the loss. Drew Gerth also scored. Jensen Van Boekel made 25 saves. Tavistock went 1-for-7 with the man advantage and killed off all three Wellesley power plays.
The Braves (13-2-1-0) lead the Applejacks by one point atop the PJHL’s Doherty Division.
Mitchell (11-6-0-2 split its weekend games. After losing Friday in overtime in Wingham, the Hawks bounced back with a 4-2 win Saturday in Kincardine.
Jake Finlayson scored twice, while Brett Denny and Ethan Hill also scored. Seth Monkhouse made 39 saves.
Logan Freiburger and Jerrid Fossold replied for Kincardine. Sean Andrus made 29 saves.
Kincardine went 1-for-3 on the power play, and Mitchell was 0-for-2.