My third game in Franklin Park’s Original Six League had all the makings of a disaster. Our game was held on a Saturday night, and many of our experienced and/or more skilled players did not bother to show up. In fact only nine of us — plus our goalie — came to play. Where the other seven guys were is anyone’s guess. The other team, however, had all 16 of their players show. We were outnumbered. Even worse, most of the guys who normally play defense were not present.
So, I stepped up — or really, stepped back — and played defense. Only three of us played defense, leaving the other six guys to worry about scoring goals.
We had a heck of a good game. Our team won 4-1. For the first time, I felt like I contributed to the success of my team.
I assisted on one goal. Nothing remarkable, but worth mentioning because this is my first point in an organized league. While at the opponent’s blue line, I stopped a clearing attempt, took a moment, saw that my center was open, and moved the puck up ice to him. He then passed it to our winger planted next to the net, who tucked it away for our fourth goal of the game. This was just an insurance goal, increasing our lead to three.
I also played all right defensively. The three of us d-men held the other team to only 15 shots on net. I’m not taking too much credit here, as our other two defenders were way better than me, but I did play about half of the game. I was on the ice when the other team scored, but I was also on the ice twice when we scored.
I got away with one unsportsmanlike action. A player on the other team pushed me down from behind. So, I grabbed his hockey stick as he tried to skate away, and used it to pull myself back up to my feet. He then angrily kicked my stick away when I tried to pick it up. (Which makes me wonder, where were the referees?) My teammates had a good laugh over that.
Winning is awesome, but it is even more awesome when you feel that you’ve played some part in that success.
Sal’s Stats: Game 3
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Filed under: Hockey Games