By Rob Vona
The Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) Bold men’s hockey team extended their win streak to five games on Nov. 17 at the Mattamy Athletic Centre (MAC) with a 5-3 win over the Carleton Ravens on Pride Night.
Third-year forward Kyle Bollers was one of two TMU players to sport pride tape on the blade of his stick throughout the game alongside third-year forward Elijah Roberts. Several other TMU players wore pride tape on their sticks in warmups before switching for the game.
Bollers admitted that he used the tape for a family member who is a part of the LGBTQ2S+ community and “wants to show his love and care.”
It took only five minutes for the Bold to open the scoring after a loose puck made its way to Kevin Gursoy at the left hash marks. The third-year forward ripped the puck past fifth-year Ravens netminder Mark Grametbauer.
Gursoy credited his success this season to his new linemate and roommate Bollers.
“We have a lot of chemistry together both on and off the ice, playing with him makes things a lot easier,” he said.
Gursoy recorded his fifth and sixth goal of the season. He sits second in that category on the team, trailing only Bollers who has 10.
First-year Bold forward Daniil Grigorev extended his point streak to five games with the primary assist, while second-year forward Connor Bowie also recorded an assist on the play.
“When you look at Daniil, he keeps getting better and better,” said Bold head coach Johnny Duco. “We joke sometimes as a staff; he’s one of our smartest players and he speaks very limited English, but he understands hockey and he’s able to execute at a really high level.”
It took only nine seconds for the visitors to answer with a goal of their own. Ravens fourth-year forward Parker Aucoin knotted the game up at one after getting the best of Bold goaltender Kai Edmonds.
Second-year forward Ian Martin was assessed a penalty for slashing with under five minutes to go in the first period, sending the Ravens to their first man-advantage of the game.
With just 26 seconds left on the power play, fourth-year Carleton forward Brogan O’Brien found the back of the net to give his team a 2-1 lead heading into the first intermission.
In the second frame, second-year forward Will Portokalis answered the call for the Bold with a hard drive to the net that saw him find the top corner, past the outstretched glove of Grametbauer to make it 2-2.
Five minutes later, third-year Bold forward Aleks Dimovski potted his first goal of the year during a scramble in front of the Ravens net. First-year defenceman Jaden Raad recorded his first point as a member of the Bold with an assist while Portokalis chipped in with his second point of the night, also recording an assist on the play.
With under two minutes left in the second period, Ravens first-year forward Reese Belton got past a defender with some silky stick handling. Boyd then found fourth-year forward Aaron Boyd for an easy backdoor tap-in goal to yet again tie the game.
After a scrum ensued at the end of the second period, the Ravens found themselves on a five-on-three power play to open up the third period as Bollers and fourth-year forward Carson Gallagher were sent to the penalty box.
A good effort from the penalty-killing unit saw the Bold get back to even strength. Shortly after, third-year TMU defenceman Ryan Wells ripped a shot from the point that beat Grametbauer, putting the Bold back up by one—their third lead of the game.
“Our penalty kill is something we take pride in,” said Bollers. “We really do enjoy killing penalties and our goalie and our forwards help us out a lot.”
Gursoy put the nail in the coffin as he slid home the Bold’s second goal of the period, giving the Bold some much-needed insurance as they took the 5-3 victory.
“What you love about [Gursoy] is that for a highly skilled player that can really put the puck in the net, he plays hard in all zones,” said Duco. “That’s why he plays the minutes he does. It was great to see him get rewarded tonight.”
UP NEXT: The TMU Bold host their cross-town rivals, the University of Toronto Varsity Blues on Nov. 22 for the Teddy Bear Toss Night. Puck drop is set for 6 p.m.