SUNDAY, Lapeer, Michigan - Without their leading goal-scorer Jordan Davis in the lineup, the 07 Lapeer Storm found themselves heading into an important divisional clash with the Bulldogs from Grosse Pointe on Saturday afternoon, needing a win to ensure a second-place divisional finish. A win is exactly what they got!
Mid-way through the first stanza, #91 Timmy Stull pinched in from the blue-line and fired a pass across the ice to #77 Jakob Barton who wasted no time in tickling the twine, to put the Storm up 1-0. Later in the first, #2 Cory Hall picked up the puck in his own zone and raced through the neutral zone. As he entered the Bulldog zone, he broke wide around the left defenseman to gain some real estate, and then drove hard to the net as he fired a wrist-shot over the blocker of the Grosse Pointe goaltender to increase the Storm lead to 2-0 after one period.
Early in the second, following excellent fore-checking by #8 Jon Whited and #12 Cade Doud, a scramble ensued in front of the Bulldog net, and #77 Jakob Barton banged it home for his second of the afternoon and put the boys from Lapeer up 3-0. The game had end-to-end action for the remainder of the second period, and the Storm would head into the final stanza with a 3-goal lead.
In the final period, Lapeer controlled most of the action and with 6 minutes left to play, #91 Timmy Stull picked up a loose puck just inside the Storm zone and raced up the right side of the ice and finished the play with a wonderful deke of the Bulldog goalie to put the Storm up 4-0. Grosse Point added a goal with a little over one minute remaining to make it 4-1, but the game was never in doubt.
Josh Eager steered aside 21/22 shots faced to lead the Storm to victory, and was aided all game long with strong defensive play by Nick Hoffman, Devon Grote, Cory Hall, and Timmy Stull.
The customary Storm hard-hats were awarded to #83 Nick Hoffman for his strong play on the defensive end of the ice, and #35 Josh Eager for his consistent play throughout the contest backstopping the Storm to victory.
When asked about the teams performance, Coach Brent Bernard said "I am very pleased with how our boys have played (not only today, but this season). We experienced a rather large turnover of kids from last season, and it took us a few weeks for the kids to come together as a unit. Some of these young-men are new to the travel hockey game, and the way they are performing you would never know it. I have been very happy about how these kids have worked in practice and developed their skill-set. Most importantly, I think the boys are having a ton of fun, playing as a team, and learning what youth sports are all about."
With the win, the Lapeer Storm finish the regular season in a tie for second place in the Little Caesars Howe 3 White Division. As the Lapeer Storm wait for their playoff alignments to be sorted out, they will travel to Bad Axe on Sunday evening to take on the Bay County PeeWee All-Stars and next weekend will participate in the Big Chill Tournament in Ann Arbor, Michigan.