R-Plecz Rallies and Holds On for First Win
Coming off last season's success. R-Plecz had failed to meet expectations this season, slothing to a 0-1-1 record.
When asked about the lack of success veteran Zac Talmadge replied "we're just not comin in hot."
In response to the disappointing start a new defensive system was implemented to cut down on the large number of odd
man breaks. The result was not seen until in the later stages of Sunday's game.
Dan Hallwirth opened the scoring just three minutes in and followed up with a second goal just a few minutes later.
However the defensive system did not hold up and within minutes the score had been tied at two. Paul Bradley would add
a goal before the close of the period, but We Win. We Lose. We Booze. was quick to answer. Goaltender Gary Delehanty
was not shy about the lack of defense as he was seen shouting at his team during the first intermission.
After a great shift to start the second by Kyle Johnson, Paul Bradley, and Dan Hallwirth; Luke Mohamed and Steve Roskey
jumped on in Johnson's and Bradley's place and kept the pressure on. The team would not allow We Booze to clear the
zone and continued to cycle the puck around. After Dan and Luke's great team effort Dan fed the puck to Roskey who buried
the puck past the screened goaltender. R-Plecz continued to play solid D and was aided by outstanding goaltending by
Delehanty. Gary bailed the team out on several occasions including a remarkable glove save with just two minutes remaining
in the period.
After a turnover, Lumberjack streaked down the ice on a breakaway. Mishandling the puck, Polliard stayed with the
play and made a beautiful feed to Mohamed, who was posted up in his office. Mohamed buried the puck for the two goal
lead. We Booze would counter with a goal but before the period would close, Johnson scored a highlight reel goal, batting
the puck out of mid-air, off the crossbar and in.
Zac Talmadge arrived for the start of the third period and only helped to aid the R-Plecz effort. Because We Booze
only dressed one bench player it was clear they could not skate with the more energized R-Plecz team. Dan Hallwirth
opened the period with an insurance goal, putting R-Plecz up 7-4, as he banked the puck in off a defender.
Gary Delehanty stood on his head for the remainder of the game, turning aside 19 shots in the third period alone.
When asked about his play, Gary responded, "Yeah bitch!" Despite his efforts, We Booze managed to add two goals to pull
within one, with just five minutes remaining. The team's exchanged chances but neither could tickle the twine.
As time ticked away We Booze took a dumb penalty, as a frustrated player punched Luke Mohamed in the back of the head.
An innocent and confused Mohamed toppled to the ice. As he rose the We Booze player skated away in fear of the punishment
Mohamed could have handed out. More importantly, R-Plecz had a man advantage for the remainder of the game and held
on, with the duo of Gene Frederick and Steve Keslar thwarting any offensive opportunities from We Booze.
R-Plecz Dealt First Loss of Season
Things aren't going well for team R-Plecz. After blowing a 5-1 lead in game one of the season, R-Plecz again collapsed
late vs. The Thundercats.
R-Plecz, attempting to reorganize after week one's follies took to the ice hard, yet once again surrendered the game's
first goal. Dan Hallwirth tied the game at one with a short-handed goal, his fourth goal of the season. Less than
two minutes later Steve Keslar sent a heavy dump in at the net, an over-anxious netminder played the wide shot, leaving the
rebound right to Paul Bradley who buried his first career goal. After the Thundercats went up 3-2, Bradley scored yet
another goal to knot the game at three.
While surrendering three goals Gary Delehanty could have easily surrendered six or seven goals. Poor defensive
play and a lack of a breakout left Delehanty out to dry on several occasions. Yet the sophomore netminder stood tall
and held his team in the game.
When asked to assess Delehanty's performance, Coach Klingensmtih feverously replied: "G-Dell? Thank god he's there.
We might have lost both games 15-0 with another goaltender in net. We need to pick up our defensive game."
While Klingensmith was quick to defend defensemen Gene Frederick and Steve Keslar, he made it well known who he blamed
for the 0-1-1 start.
"Have you seen the backchecking? Have you seen the breakout? There wasn't one guy out there who was close
to playing proper defense. Maybe Kyle Johnson, he's a Selke winner. I think these guys are trying to give up odd
man rushes. I really think these guys want to be the soffest forwards in the league, they're losing races to pucks,
getting out worked... it's (very) embarassing"
R-Plecz did muster an attack late in the third, with Mohamed burying a Roskey feed to pull within one. After a
timeout, the team was poised to knot the game at one. The Thundercats promptly scored on their next shift. The
following two faceoffs each resulted in a 3 on 1 and each time R-Plecz surrendered a goal.
Final Score: Thundercats 8 : R-Plecz 4
Assistant Coach Connor James was quick to defend his players and his superior, Coach Klingensmith when asked if the signing
of Paul Bradley (the seventh man) led to R-Plecz's struggles on defense. "You're asking me to sit Bradley? You
think that signing was a mistake?" scoffed Connor. "You find me one team in this league that's disappointed in a rookie
who has two goals in two games...you can't, you (expletive) can't! Who should I sit? Johnson? He's a Selke
winner. Hallwirth? He's our best goal scorer? Polliard? He plays harder than any other guy on the
ice." Connor continued to field questions before finally shunning questions and spouting "We're winless in two games.
It's a ten game season, you win some, you lose some. The problem is not the players on the ice, it's how these players
are playing because of how they're being coached."
Connor stormed from the press conference, shotgunning two beers on the way out.
Connor and Klingensmith have one week to rally their troops in preparation for their matchup vs. Win Lose We Still Booze
R-Plecz Stumbles to Tie in Opener
Coming off last season's successes, R-Plecz was ready to begin the 2009 season as their "Charge to the Championship"
The game started off poorly as R-Plecz surrendered the game's initial goal. Dan Hallwirth immediately struck back
burying a Steve Roskey feed just nine seconds after the goal. Dan struck again a few minutes later to go up by one.
On his next shift Dan again scored, completing the natural hat trick. HPPB continued to take poor penalties, and R-Plecz
made them pay. After Luke Mohamed blocked a laser with his arm, he was promptly punished for his efforts. As he
fell a speeding Zac Talmadge scooped up the biscuit and charged ahead on a 2 on 0 with Steve Roskey. Roskey fed the
puck to Zac and with the puck resting in the crease fanned once, but fired again to bury the puck.
A few minutes later a desperate HPPB team threw a stick at Steve Roskey to prevent a breakaway. Roskey was awarded
a penalty shot and used it to posterize the HPPB netminder. This goal seemed to serve notice to HPPB as they were down
four halfway through the game.
HPPB fired back with a goal the next shift and took advantage of an R-Plecz too many men on the ice penalty to pull within
two heading into the third. The team's exchanged chances early in the third, but a disorganized and fatigued R-Plecz
team proved no match for HPPB. Only with several spectacular saves from Gary Delehanty was R-Plecz given a chance to
maintain their lead.
Caught running around in their own zone, Kyle Johnson was whistled for a tripping call with just two minutes to go.
R-Plecz defended their cage valiently but could not stop the HPPB charge as they knotted the game and sent it into overtime.
Overtime was a much better played period but was stopped short at the referee's discretion. As Luke Mohamed backchecked
he collided with one of HPPB's stars. The player responded by punching Mohamed and getting ejected. The referee
ruled the game was "out of hand" and called the game.
Final Score: R-Plecz 5: HPPB 5
R-Plecz Prepares for Season Opener
As their newest season nears, R-Plecz is preparing for the season. Coming off last year's success, the team and
its fans cannot help but believe that this year will be more promising than the last. With the addition of Paul Bradley
and the returning of the team's core; the league has taken notice, that R-Plecz is a team to fear. The new season coincides
with a new division, as their league has been split into two divisions, North and South. The geographic designations
have no meaning other than to seperate the two divisons. The smaller divisions have helped to create rivalries as R-Plecz
will face off against four teams six times each. This is unheard of in roller hockey circles and has not been seen since
R-Plecz Year 1, during the Ball Era. Hopefully this season concludes in a similar manner to that of Year 1, a championship.
Bradley Inks One Year Deal
Already an up and coming team, R-Plecz bolstered their roster by signing Paul Bradley to a one year deal for an undisclosed
amount. Paul said of the signing "I just want to pway hockey!"