Tommies grab first win of 2013
Timely goals and strong goaltending will often win you hockey games, and that’s exactly what the St. Thomas Tommies got Friday against the Dalhousie Tigers in a 2-1 win.
Jonathan Bonneau scored twice for the Tommies, while Jonathan Groenheyde made 30 saves in the win.
“These are the kind of games we can’t really drop,” Bonneau said. “So we really needed those points. We battled hard in a tight game and we got out of here with the two points, so that’s what matters.”
Groenheyde lost the shutout with 30 seconds left as Andrew Wigginton got the Tigers on the score sheet.
“It’s good to get the win. That’s all that matters,” Groenheyde said. “Obviously as a goalie you want to have shutouts in the shutout column but I’d rather have the wins in the win column.”
Tommies head coach Troy Ryan praised the performances of Bonneau and Groenheyde, but he said there was another reason they won the game.
“The whole reason we won tonight’s hockey game in my mind is John MacDonald, [Kyle] Henegan and Nick Brown stole us that many shifts and never got hemmed in defensively,” he said.
Bonneau gave the Tommies the lead on a breakaway with a minute and a half left in the first period. Bonneau had been checked behind the goal and was slow getting up but managed to sneak behind the play, stay onside, and go backhand, forehand on Tigers goalie Wendell Vye.
“I was pretty rattled actually,” Bonneau said. “I just got up… and here I was on a breakaway and I scored, so I was like ‘alright well, I’ll take it.’” Defenceman Matthew Hobbs picked up the lone assist on a nice bank pass off the boards.
The second period saw no goals scored, but the Tommies came close a couple of times, most notably through forward Stephen Sanza who hit the post twice.
Dalhousie generated chances of their own, but nothing particularly troubled Groenheyde, who saw everything thrown at him. “I thought I did a good job in controlling my rebounds tonight,” Groenheyde added.
Groenheyde made 17 saves in the third period alone as Dalhousie pressed forward for the game tying goal but were stuffed every time. Groenheyde’s biggest save of the night was on a partial breakaway where Francois Gauthier collected a loose puck after a Tommies turnover. Gauthier opted for the wind up slap shot, but Groenheyde got just enough of the puck to turn it around the post to preserve the lead.
Bonneau would then add an empty netter after a nice pass from Alex Labonte, before Wigginton got one back for Dalhousie.
“Our guys aren’t happy,” Ryan said. “They’re happy they won but disappointed they let Jon down who keeps us in most of our games.”
It was the Tommies’ third win of the season and their record stands at 3-15-1.
Ryan was pleased to see that his team took it to heart that they blew the shutout, but he stressed that they should celebrate the wins they get since they’ve been so hard to come by this season.
“Boys, we don’t get a lot of wins. Let’s just enjoy this one,” he said.