Tavistock Royals | Mar 14, 2023 | Royals | 739 views
ROYALS headed to the AA Championship!
In the final weekend of the Royals vs. Centenaires Semi-finals, the Royals completed the task, punching their ticket to the AA Championship winning an overtime thriller on home ice in front of a packed house of passionate hockey fans.
Game 5 go underway Friday night in Seaforth, with both teams hungry to take the series lead after landing in a 2-2 stalemate after the first 2 weekends of Semi-final hockey. With home team advantage Friday night, Seaforth used the advantage, matching lines and holding the Royals off the board for the first 2 periods, scoring a goal of their own in the 1st period with 5:31 left in the period (Siddal). Heading into the 3rd period, the Royals trailed 1-0 but kept their focus and were able to tie things up early in the 3rd period with an unassisted goal by #17 Deven Kropf at 18:14. The stalemate continued until #17 Deven Kropf again found the back of the net at 3:35, this time assisted by #9 Collin Hartwick and #44 Callan Christner. The Royals were able to hold onto the lead, earning themselves a 2-1 victory behind the steadfast goaltending of #30 Jensen van Boekel. The Royals left Seaforth with a 3-2 series lead heading home Saturday night with a chance to win the series.
Saturday in front of the biggest home crowd of the season, both clubs displayed their skill and determination, as fans from both sides were treated with one of the most exciting games of the season.
It seemed we were in for another scoreless 1st period before the Royals #44 Cal Christner (assisted by Sauder/M. Noyes) put one in for home team at with 2:15 to go in the period.
The 2nd period saw the Cents tie the game at 14:50 (#7), gaining the lead with a shorthanded goal from #22 Brady Wiffen. 2-1 Cents after 2 periods of play.
Early at 19:14 in the 3rd, #17 Deven Kropf found the back of the net (assisted by Sauder) to tie things up 2-2. The Royals kept pressing with #11 Drew Gerth (assisted by Kienapple/Vulgan) giving the Royals a 3-2 lead at 15:44. Seaforth answered right back at 13:38, tying the game then taking a 4-3 lead with 11:31 to go. Encouraged by the cheers of the home crowd, #44 Cal Christner added his 2nd goal of the game (assisted by Sauder/Kropf) tying the game at 4-4. Both teams held on to forcing overtime to decide the winner.
After a quick flood play resumed with Seaforth facing elimination and the Royals hungry to punch their ticket to the AA Championship. Again with both coaches carefully matching lines, the 20 min overtime was back and forth with #2 Cam Leslie blocking a shot in the dying minutes of the 1st overtime period. Encouraged by his teammates' play and ready to end the series, #28 Patrick Vulgan skated up the boards looking for the right time to feed one of the streaking Royals forwards. With #16 Sean Leslie tying up the Seaforth Captain, Vulgan found a familiar outlet, the tape of his linemate #10 Sean Kienapple's stick. With Kienapple using every last bit of flex in his stick, a bullet was rifled at Seaforth netminder Tyler Parr and there was no mistake with the goal pounding steel at the back of the net to give the Royals the 5-4 overtime victory and locking in their spot in the AA Championship final. #30 Jensen van Boekel kept the Royals in the game and earned the W in the pipes again for the series winning game.
Video of game winning goal HERE
Full highlights of GAME 6 HERE