September 5, 2016

Johnstown Shakes New York to Their Core, 11-5. Game and Weekend Thoughts


In Gary Betman's (NHL commissioner) opinion, this is what scores in hockey should be all the time. For a game that featured sixteen goals in three periods, it was the least entertaining game of the weekend.

After a close battle with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Friday night and a hard hitting game vs the Apple core on Saturday, Sunday's game was mostly blah. Sure, the Tomahawks scored quiet often, in fact six goals in the first period, but as far as competitiveness, there really wasn't much in this game.

I'm not speaking of Johnstown's effort, as they controlled the whole game. There wasn't a shots-on-goal clock for this game, but I think it would be safe to assume that Johnstown had well over forty shorts. New York, maybe half of that (if I'm being generous).

New York's team was already down a few players after Saturday night's game, due to injuries. When the Apple Core took the ice on Sunday, they only had sixteen players dressed, three of which were goalies.

In the first period, Johnstown's Josh Norman laid out a devastating hit at center ice which sent a New York player down to the ice. He remained there for several minutes, before being helped off the ice.

I don't think New York would have given Johnstown a better game on Sunday if they had all of their players, but the fact that when they'd make a line change in-between whistles they only had two guys left on the bench, didn't help their cause.

Johnstown, from the start, was able to ware down the team from New York and it showed on the scoreboard.

With such a lopsided game, it's hard to say how Tomahawks' goalie Vinnie Purpura looked. Yes, he allowed five goals. Yes, he didn't see many shots. That's just the problem. Purpura didn't see action for long segments at a time. It's hard to keep yourself in the game when you're a spectator for most of it.

Players for the Tomahawks that had shinned in the first two games of the weekend, continued that trend on Sunday.

Three of the biggest standouts from the weekend were Nice Bruce, Riley Doyon, and Joey Kile. All three played great and were offensive threats every game.

After a shaky start in Friday's game, the D-men wearing the team's third jersey, really locked things down. All the guys on the blueline, skate very well, and have good size.

If you make your season prediction on how the Tomahawks will do this season, you've got to think based on these three games that they'll fair very well.

Then again, it's hard to make an exact prediction as two of the three games where verse the Apple Core who play in a lower league, didn't have a full bench, and have a terrible team name.

We won't have to wait long now to see just how well Johnstown does this season as the first regular season game is this Friday vs the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights. Of course, this will be the start of a sixteen game road trip the Tomahawks will find themselves on to start the season.

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