By Devin Jones
Despite the 7-0 defeat to the Lakehead University Thunderwolves Wednesday night at the Mattamy Athletic Centre, the Ryerson men’s hockey team is still confident they can win the best of three semi-final OUA series.
“We know we can do it, people on the outside might say Ryerson’s done, but the whole team believes we’re capable,” said lead team scorer Jamie Wise. “[Friday] we’re going to give it our all, and whatever happens, happens.”
Lakehead forward Cody Alcock scored four goals to give the Thunderwolves the win and hand the Rams a do or die situation come Friday’s game.
In the first period, the Rams came out firing on all cylinders, with multiple scoring chances being denied by Lakehead goaltender Jeff Bosch. Despite the intensity, the Rams fell 2-0 courtesy of Alcock — who scored his first two-of-four goals on the night.
Penalty trouble throughout the game, including a four-on-three in the first period, caused the Rams to be on the defensive for much of the game.
“We can’t blame the refs, we didn’t execute on our special teams early in the game and they did,” team captain Andrew Buck said. “We never found a way to battle back.”
The Thunderwolves score three more goals in the second period, while the Rams faced more penalty trouble and a lack of goals — despite scoring chances.
The Rams pull starting goaltender Troy Passingham in the third period — hoping that back-up goaltender Steve Gleeson, who has only played one game this season, could stop the onslaught. Lakehead forward Carson Dubchak then scored the seventh goal of the night, effectively ending any chance of a Rams’ comeback.
“They were hungry coming into this game, they were bound bent and determined to beat us I’m sure,” head coach Graham Wise said. “We have to rally ourselves and go over certain things, but in no way are we defeated, no way.”
The Rams will play their second game of a possible three game series against the Thunderwolves, Friday February 28th at 7:30 p.m. in the Fort Williams Gardens. The Thunderwolves have a 12-3 record at home (regular season and playoffs) and averaged the third most fans in the CIS during the regular season.