DRIVES SPLIT WEEKEND CONTESTS, News (Milverton Drives Hockey)

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Milverton 4 Wheel Drives | Nov 28, 2023 | Jim Yost | 987 views
       The Four Wheel Drives ended the month of November with a home and away split with the Tavistock Royals on Saturday in Tavistock and back home squaring off against the Seaforth Centenaires . The Milverton squad would be entering the weekend activities coming off their first victory last weekend against the Lucknow Lancers. Weekend action against perennial league powerhouses Seaforth and Tavistock would most certainly put the team’s moxie to task.

     Team black and yellow rolled into Tavistock Saturday evening to square off against last year’s league champs. Tavistock is the home of the Senior men’s club, the Royals and also the Tavistock Braves the town’s Jr C entry. Tavi is also the epicentre for world renown crokinole afficionados. The village hosts the World Crokinole Championship the first Saturday in June every year. As luck would have it ,local crokinole prodigy Wayne Keupfer  has won the prestigious championship in the past. The Royal /Drive rivalry has been around for many years . Sometimes friendly , sometimes not so much.

    First period action got under way and with both teams trading some good chances some great hockey was being played. Sean Kienapple would open the scoring with a dandy shot from the wing to give the Royals the early lead.  Jeff Fritzley , who has been on a tear recently  would knot the score at 1 with his 8th goal of the season . Dennis Dewar and Derek Erb picking up assists.

    Dewar would score a short handed tally at 13:57 of the second period with Riley Kuepfer getting the assist. The Drives would enjoy the lead for only a short duration as the Tavi squad would jump on a power play opportunity and tie the score at a deuce. Halfway through the second stanza Riley Kuepfer would net his first goal on the power play  to give the Drives the lead . Fritzley would pick up the helper. The Drives stepped off the ice at the end of the second period with a 3-2 lead . With the period coming to an end the two teams engaged in some extra curricular activities that would result in some misconducts and one significant Drive player injury.

    With the third period under way the Royals would score two quick goals to take the lead 4-3 . Brennan Watson would score on the power play, his first of the year , Kuepfer and Dewar picking up helpers. This would knot the score at 4 with over half a period to play. Sean Kienapple would score  the game winner , his third of the game at 8:25 . The Drives couldn’t find an answer back and the Royals would score another goal to take a two goal into the final minutes of the match. Wth Timmy Bester out of the net in favour of an extra attacker the Drives had many good looks but could not capitalize . The Royals would drain an empty netter and Kienapple would add his fourth of the night to seal the deal for Tavi.

     The Sunday matinee at the PERC featured the hometown heroes matching skills with the Cforth Centenaires. The ‘ Cents won the league championship two years ago and typically always have a strong club.  With the loss to the Tavi Royals still a fresh memory in the team’s mind this would certainly test the intestinal fortitude of the team. The team would glad to be home after playing on the road for the last month. Hopefully this would be a shot of adrenaline for the squad to play with some jam they would need against tough Cforth crew .

    This was a tight game from the outset. There was no scoring until Jeff Fritzley would score at 2:23 of the first period on a short handed effort . A gorgeous deke on the Cforth netminder  would give the hometown their first lead of the game . No scoring in the second period as both teams were unable to solve either team’s goal keeper. The Drives did successfully nullify a two man power play for the ‘Cents  that enabled the Drives to maintain their lead.

     Riley Kuepfer would bend the twine with his second of the year to give the Drives a 2- 0 lead at 16:45 of the third period. Dewar and Coleton Quipp would get assists on the power play opportunity. The Drives played sound old time hockey from this point on not letting the opposition back in the game. Tyler Fassl  would keep the ‘Cents at bay making some glorious saves to keep the lead intact. Both Bester and Fassl have given the team outstanding goaltending this year.  With time ticking away and the tension building to a crescendo the Drives were on the verge of their second victory. But alas the ‘Cents had other plans . Jamie Huber would score with a little over 5 minutes left in the match to get within one. The Drives knuckled down and played solid hockey for the last minutes to secure the victory.  Needless to say this was a huge effort by the team a great effort from all the players .

The team are on the road again next weekend  in Durham on Friday and in Ripley on Saturday. Next Drives home

game is December 9 against the Lucknow Lancers which also happens to be Ladies Night

            Happy Birthdays to..... Mark Andre Fleury  -goalie

                                                     Chamillionaire- rapper

                                                     Matt Cameron-  drummer

                                                     Rick Albrecht-   insurance guy

            Tell a man that there is 400 million stars and he will believe you . Tell him that the wall has wet paint and he has to touch it

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