Three Red Hawks defencemen not only held their own on the defensive end but also led the team in scoring with three of the five goals scored in the 5-2 win over Peterborough’s St. Peter Catholic Secondary School Saints.
Due to injuries to the defensive corps Yake said the team virtually relied on Jacob Haedicke Nolan Flood and Shawn Walker to play defence (with a few shifts by Jacob’s brother Lucas).
He called his defencemen the players of the game.
“We weren’t sure they could keep it going the whole game. It was an amazing effort by the three of them to keep it together and play the whole game with three defence … those three guys logged pretty much the whole game and controlled a good chunk of it with good solid play so if you’re going to give player of the game [give it] to those three guys” he said.
Jacob scored two goals (his second on an end-to-end rush a la Bruins’ great Bobby Orr) while Walker scored an empty-net goal and Flood finished with two assists.
They were offensive monsters during even-strength and the powerplay but also responsible in their own end when they needed to be.
Yake believes one or two of his defencemen will recover and be available soon but didn’t say when specifically.
The Saints are a perennial powerhouse in Kawartha.
Historically the Hawks have had their troubles against the Catholic school squad.
“Whenever we play that team we’re always underdogs. We very seldom are victorious against that team” he said.
The Hawks were leading for much of the game 3-0 and almost squandered their lead.
After the Saints scored the first goal early in the third and then another minutes after there was doubt creeping in on the Hawks’ side Yake thought.
“Going into the third period up 3-0 I’m sure a few of them were thinking: ‘OK is this when the wheels are going to fall off or are we going to keep it together?” he said.
Yake said a goal from Josh Boice’s low shot taken from between the faceoff dots was well-deserved goal. It gave the Hawks breathing room with minutes left in the game.
“It’s a smart play by Josh. He worked really hard all game and I thought he was good guy to get that goal for that situation. It put us back up 4-2. That was definitely a big one to take the pressure off and after that we played much better” he said.
Boice also assisted on Owen Gilbert’s goal in the second period. Assists also came from Benn MacNaull and Trevor Turner.
Hawks goalie Carson Sisson who had a few key saves earned the win against the Saints.
Yake said his special teams played well with and without the puck particularly when they had to kill a four-minute major penalty to essentially end the game.
“Our guys did an exceptional job killing penalties when we were involved with that. I thought our powerplay … we scored our first goal with the powerplay. I thought they did a good job there. So specialty teams were part of it. The last four minutes was a challenge no doubt but our guys pulled through. That’s a positive” he said.
Yake said the Hawks will build from this win despite the Saints being weaker than other years.
Hard work paid off in this 5-2 win which belies the competitiveness of the game.
“We worked hard. Stayed out of the penalty box for the most part. It was a good effort in that sense and we’ve been working on what are we doing and where we are going to go when we don’t have the puck and I thought I saw a lot of good things happening out there. That was huge to getting the win today” he said.