By Mac Christie, Times-Advocate Staff
LUCAN – The Exeter Hawks were hammered 11-4 by the Lucan Irish Wednesday night in Lucan, the beginning of a three-game week for both teams.
Hawks coach Dale Timmermans said the lopsided loss was a wake-up call for the team.
“We weren’t ready to play mentally or physically,” he said. “Basically it was a reality-check that you can’t just go through the motions, you can’t just show up to the rink at any time and not be prepared.”
The Irish got off to a good start on home ice with Colin Hartwick scoring 1:20 into the opening period. Less than a minute later Dylan Murray made it 2-0.
Tyson Patrick scored to make it 3-0 Lucan 30 seconds later, before Wes Huston and Hartwick notched power play markers to make it 5-0.
The Hawks’ Zach Anderson, newly signed from the Jr. ‘B’ St. Thomas Stars scored to bring the score to 5-1 before the end of the period.
In the second Mitch Smith increased the Irish lead to 6-1, before Anderson added his second of the game at 6:43. Unfortunately for the Hawks, Anderson suffered a separated shoulder later in the game, which will sideline him for four-to-six weeks.
“He’ll be a good addition to the club,” Timmermans said of Anderson. “Hopefully he’ll heal up quick and we’ll get him ready for the playoffs.”
Taylor Moir cut the lead to 6-3 before Keiron Cobban scored a power play goal just past the midway point of the period.
Although Alex Deluce scored to cut the Lucan lead to 7-4 with less than four minutes to play in the period, that was all Exeter would manage as Smith scored before the end of the frame.
Newly-signed goaltender Colton James started the third period for Exeter, but it made no difference as Murray added his second of the game and Cobban scored twice more to complete the hat-trick. Paolotto made 29 saves in the loss while
James turned away nine of the 12 shots he faced.
Dylan Hoover made 29 saves in the Lucan net for the win.
Irish coach Dan Mudge said Lucan played well in the win.
“I think it’s definitely a confidence-builder when you’re up against guys like Exeter and some of the bigger boys,” he said of the win. “Anytime you can get a win, let alone win big it’s a real boost in confidence, especially for our young guys.”
“It was just one of those nights that everything went right for us and it didn’t matter what they tried, it just didn’t seem to work.”
Timmermans said the team had a meeting after the loss and they’re going to move forward.
“Basically we’ve got to commit to play hockey a lot better than that,” he explained. “You never want to be embarrassed like that, but it was all self-induced.”
Hawks fall to Trojans
Friday night on home ice Timmermans said the Hawks gave a better effort, but still fell to the Thamesford Trojans 4-3.
Thamesford jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period before Kalvin Thornton got the Hawks on the board with less than four minutes to play in the frame.
In the second Thamesford added two more goals before Wesley McGovern found the back of the net to make it 4-2 at the 13:48 mark of the second.
Although Dan Lawson got the Hawks within one just over two minutes into the third, that was all the Hawks would manage in the 4-3 loss.
Colton James made his first start in net for Exeter, turning away 30 shots in the defeat.
Timmermans said he thought the Hawks took the play to Thamesford for the majority of the game, noting he felt the refereeing was shoddy.
“Overall the effort was better,” he said of the team’s play. “We had better shots on net. It was a good game.”
Hawks down Sailors
The Hawks found the win column for the first time last week Saturday night in Port Stanley, topping the Port Stanley Sailors 5-2.
Dylan Bedard scored a power play goal four-and-a-half minutes into the first, before Kalvin Thornton added another with the man advantage four minutes later.
Just under three minutes later Conner Preston gave the Hawks a 3-0 lead, but Port Stanley added a power play marker of their own before the end of the period to cut the lead to 3-1.
After a scoreless second period Kalvin Thornton added his second of the night 42 seconds into the third to make it 4-1 Exeter.
Although Port Stanley got one back, Bedard added his second of the game with just over 10 minutes remaining to ice the win for the Hawks.
Bryan Paolotto allowed two goals on 20 shots before being kicked out for fighting with just under three minutes to play.
Timmermans said Paolotto took exception to being run and fought the player.
“That was good, I don’t mind sticking up for yourself once in a while if you have to,”
Timmermans said. “But he’ll be gone for (the next game) because of it.”
James came in for the final two minutes and 20 seconds, making 11 saves.
The Hawks welcomed Trevor Thornton, who had been dealing with a groin injury back in the lineup for the weekend games. He added an assist against Port Stanley.
Timmermans said the last week was a learning experience for the Hawks.
“We learned some pretty big lessons against Lucan,” he said. “The boys are starting to take this a little more seriously than they have been and committing a bit better.”
The Hawks are next in action Nov. 24 at 8 p.m. against the North Middlesex Stars in Parkhill.