Week 2 Winter League
Week 2 Results:
Pink 6 Red 4
Blue 8 Gray 7 Shootout
Green 10 Black 9 Overtime
Standings after 2 weeks
1. Green 4 (23/16)
2. Pink 4 (15/12)
3. Blue 2 (8/7) **
4. Gold 2 (3/2) **
5. Red 1 (6/9)
6. Black 1 (17/19)
7. Gray 1 (14/22)
**Have had a bye week**
Please note, the top 3 teams at the end of the regular season will be guaranteed a best of 3 series starting April 18th. Seed 2 will play Seed 3 in a best of 3 series. There will be a mini tournament for the 4th and final playoff spot on April 11th. Seed 4 will play Seed 7 and Seed 5 will play Seed 6. The 2 winners will play against one another to see who that 4th playoff team will be. The 4th playoff team will play against the top seed in a best of 3 series starting April 18th. In short, it will be important to get a top 3 seed in the regular season to avoid having to play in the 4th place tournament.
Brief Week 2 Summary:
We are only 2 weeks and 6 games into the winter league and have already seen 2 shootouts and another game that was decided in overtime. All 7 teams have at least one point in the standings and team Black has lost both games by a goal. It looks like all the captains knew what they were doing when they drafted their teams.
Team Pink got an added boost when Austin Boyd showed up last night (he was not able to play the 1st week). He scored the 1st goal of the night on a nice slap shot. Steve Capetta contributed a goal as well in his first game of this league. Zach Foradori is hoping March doesnt come anytime soon so he can keep contributing big goals for this team. He had a couple important ones last night including an insurance goal in the 3rd period. Once March comes, he may be spending more time on the baseball field which wont do team Pink any favors. Henry Sutter continues to play really well for team Red. While he wasn't quite as good as he was last week, he did what he could to keep team Red in the game. Robb Reed contributed another goal for Team Red and Alex Waddell scored a short handed goal in the 2nd period. Jordan Tosh came back from a brief injury and contributed a couple goals to keep the game close throughout.
Team Blue played their first game of the season last night with a thin bench, but still managed to pull off an 8-7 win against team Gray in a shootout. Phil Pompeii, Vinnie Deloia and Ben Rossi all returned from lengthy absences. Vinnie scored the first goal of the game. After spending some time on the bench to start the 2nd period, he was able to return. Dan Fatula just happened to draft 2 goalies on this team (Herman/Matchock) but neither could play last night. Adam McKinley filled in and shut team gray out in the shootout. Dan Fatula and Dave Jewell each had a couple goals for team Blue. Team Gray was without Kevin Smith for a 2nd straight week. Steve Kalgren was not able to make it last night. The team picked up Jerred Amick to try to fill their voids. Following the game, Amick said he really didn't have to do much (he did score a game tying goal at one point in the 3rd period). Rooster continues to show why he is a valuable person to have on a team. He scored on multiple occasions. Erika Dodd also scored again. If Kevin and Steve Kalgren can make some games and with young talent like Trent Bembenic, Tyler Waltman and the Dodd's, this team wont be easy to beat. Dean Risser looked more comfortable in net than he did last week. He too has not played much hockey for a while. Team Blue is rumored to have John Matchock returning next week. Tony Benanti will be limited throughout the season and Josh Clontz wont be available for another 3 weeks or so. Their available players on given nights should get lots of playing time throughout the season.
Unfortunately, I did not get to see the final game of the night (Green against Black). Rumor has that Eric Llewellyn scored the game winning goal in overtime. In interviewing one of the league's new guys, Steve Pentz, it sounds like he is feeling right at home with the league's competition. He scored his first goal last night. Unfortunately, the team lost by a goal for the 2nd straight week. Team Green is 2-0 on the season and playing with a full bench. They will be off next week. Kaden Coulter is the league's newest (and youngest goalie) and doing pretty well so far.
For anyone reading this, Larry K said he is available to play next week if any team needs a fill in.
Regarding fill in players: We try to keep this league organized but laid back at the same time. If your team has a thin roster on a given night or missing one of its core players, we got guys willing to fill in. Just let us know so we can inform the opposing captain. If they are ok with it, we can try to find fill ins. We prefer the fill in players to be comparable in skill level to the players they are filling in for. Jerred Amick filled in for Kevin Smith last night. Adam McKinley filled in for an injured Tim Herman. Derik Day filled in for an injured Jordan Tosh last week.
In addition, we need more refs. If you are interested in reffing games on a particular night, let me know. Refs get paid $15 a game if that helps give any incentive. We have been struggling to find refs the first 2 weeks of the season. We dont want to wait till the day of the games to find refs. Please message me if you can ref some games this season.
Tony Conforto (Gray)
1. 8 to 7 shootout loss tonight. What can you say about the overall team effort tonight? Everybody on the team should be proud of the way they played tonight! Everyone gave their all and contributed in keeping the game close all they way to the end.
2. The game was back and forth tonight. Do you like playing in those kind of games? I really like these types of games because they keep you under constant pressure to perform. It’s easier to find the extra energy when the game is on the line then when there is a 3+ deficit.
3. How do you think the team played overall? I think we played better as a team tonight, we had better passing, more quality shots on goal, and held the ground on defense. There was a definite improvement in our overall game from last week! Taking a team as talented as blue is to a shootout is an impressive feat in its own and our goalie was on fire tonight!!!!
4. You like the draft leagues better than the join your own team leagues? I like having draft leagues not only for the gameplay, but for the bonds that occur that make the XHL more than just a hockey league. That being said I love having our own team leagues and am looking forward to seeing how the walkers resurrect and bring newly obtained experience to our game!
5. What positives can you take out of this game? We showed improvement in all aspects of our game and I believe we will continue to improve and rack up the wins!
RJ (Team Pink)
1. 6 to 4 win tonight. What can you say about the overall team effort in the win? I thought we played alright. We have a good team but I think we haven't reached our potential yet.
2. The game was close throughout. What do you think made the difference tonight? Mr. Dodd made some good saves when we needed them and that helped us in the 3rd.
3. This team is very similar to the pink teams you have been on in the past. How do you think team chemistry has looked so far? The chemistry is good. It helps that we all know our roles but I think some of us just need to get back into hockey shape (me).
4. Do you like draft leagues better than regular xhl leagues? Yeah I would say I prefer the draft leagues at this point.
5. You will get team blue next week (fatula, Jewell, Rossi, Pompeii, vinnie, match, Herman). What kind of game are you expecting? I always expect close games in these draft leagues.
Steve Pentz (Team Black)
1. 10 to 9 loss tonight. What can you say about the overall team effort? I thought our team effort was awesome, as was last week. We have clint in goal who is top notch. Jake did some acrobatics several times on crazy stops and we had a lot of good shots. Everyone seemed to be playing hard. We figured out some lines before hand and I thought we jived well.
2. 2 weeks in for you. Is the competition what you expected? These guys are no joke. I wasnt sure what to expect when I signed up. It is definitely hard competition. I love it.
3. You happy with how you have played so far? . I am happy I played better this week than game 1. Better every week is my personal goal. I wanna help the team effort as much as I can to get a W. I'll be shooting pucks in the driveway and skating with my kiddos til game 3.
4. This team has some new faces including yourself. How do you think you have all been able to fit in with one another so far? I think tonight we figured out some things that worked well. This is a great bunch of guys who are selfless and I think we all want whats best for the team. We had a plan tonight and I found a spot i seemed to play well. It worked, I was able to get my first goal of the year. It wasn't pretty but a goal is a goal.
5. Tell us a little bit about your hockey background and what made you sign up for this league? I played Curwensville football but have 0 hockey backround other than being a 15yr lazy boy coach for the Pens. Watch me skate and it doesnt take long to figure that out. I knew there were leagues around from an old coworker who played in brockway so I did some internet digging. I have 4 kids who are all fired up for me and an awesome wife who said go for it. I'm happy i did, the last 2 weeks have been a lot of fun. Several people have asked me about the league since I signed up. I would expect more new faces next draft.
Henry Sutter (Red)
1. 6 to 4 loss tonight. What can you say about the overall team effort? I think we’re really coming together. We’ve lost by a total of 3 goals so far, so I think we’ve proven we can hang with the other teams. I need a few more stops, we need a few more goals, and we’ll be fine.
2. What was your impression of the opposition? I knew coming in they’d be a tough matchup for our defense, but we held up well. They have some real goal scorers, so I just tried to stay on top of my crease all night. They certainly bring pace, skill, and shooting.
3. The game was close but it seemed like they controlled the overall play. What positives can you take out of it? That’s been the story of the first two weeks. We’re never out of it, but it never has felt like we’re fully in control. I think that will come with reps together. We’re ironing some things out, so I think the offensive flow will come. On the back end, we’ve done well keeping high quality chances to a minimum.
4. You were like a brick wall last week and you held your own again tonight. Are you playing with a lot of confidence right now? If you would’ve asked me that last week, I would’ve said I was over the moon. This game humbled me a bit, so I’ll look to be more steady next week. Hopefully I can find my game and continue keeping goal totals low.
5. You like draft leagues better than regular xhl leagues? I think both have their merits. I like regular leagues in terms of picking up teams with my friends. I’ve never been on a contending XHL team, but it’s always nice to be with familiar faces. I like the parity provided by drafts because more teams are relevant to a cup chase. That said, you’ve given me a platform to air a grievance I’ve had with draft leagues. There always seems to be a pool of excellent players that aren’t drafted and then end up on week one rosters. Not sure what the fix is, but it does make the draft seem less important than the free agency period afterwards.
Eric Llewellyn (Green)
1. Wild win tonight over team black. What can you say about the overall team effort in the win? Any time you come back like that the effort speaks for itself. We wanted to win that game and it showed at the end. Great job by everyone tonight
2. Do you like the 3 on 3 overtime format? I do. Thats how it should be… but id like to see 5 minutes.
3. Larry put this team together in the draft. Do you like the mix of players he put together? yeah its nice. We have a good mix of offense and defense and a lot of good xhl experience. Were trying to help our young goalie as much as possible.
4. The opposing team lost by a goal last week and a goal this week. Were you expecting this game to go down to the wire when you looked at the guys on their team? I knew it would be close and I also anticipated a high scoring game… glad we came out on the right end of it. Happy to be 2-0 going into the bye next week.
5. New goalie on this team. Do you think he has looked ok so far? He gave up less goals than Clint did and hes 2-0 lol. Hes young hes got years and years to improve. Hell be fine.