Brother Rice continues torrid play in 2016, defeat Detroit C.C. 3-0
Oak Park – Birmingham Brother Rice and Detroit Catholic Central were separated by a point in the MIHL Standings, but that was just on paper.
On Wednesday night, the Warriors distanced themselves from the Shamrocks on the ice, and in the standings, behind a 3-0 win at the Oak Park Ice Arena.
“There are rankings that come out every week, and we were fifth and they were first. We took that to heart. We wanted to change the rankings.” Brother Rice senior captain Nick Bowman said.
The Shamrocks (9-4) put the pressure on Brother Rice early with a five-minute onslaught that forced Warriors goaltender Daniel Sendek to make save after save. With the puck was deep in the Brother Rice zone, senior defensemen Jaret Koger found an opening to get the Warriors’ transition game going.
“We knew that when it’s in our zone, the defense likes to pinch. (C.C.) pinched down, and my line mate pushed it ahead. It created an odd man rush,” Bowman said.
Bowman chipped the puck ahead of a Shamrock defender and fired a shot through the five hole for a momentum stealing 1-0 lead with 9:59 left to play in the first period.
Brother Rice (12-3-1) continued to play with a renewed sense of confidence after getting outshot 12-3 in the first period, and the play began to even out on the ice.
They are a good skating team,” Brother Rice coach Lou Schmidt said. They do all the little things really well. They get sticks in the passing lanes, they back-check, they fore-check, they are all over you. You need to find seams and gaps in the game, and our kids played hard to find those openings.
“We started to play with C.C. in the second and third periods.”
With 4:14 in the second period, one of those openings was created by junior forward Michael McInerney when he shipped the puck ahead to a racing Jack Dansbury. The senior skated down the nearside boards, and fired a shot at the last moment right underneath the crossbar and under the arm of Alec Calvaruso for a 2-0 lead
Koger capped the scoring late in the third when he chased a loose puck in the C.C. end. Once he corralled it, he circled around and buried a low blazing shot for a 3-0 lead.
The shutout not only extended Brother Rice’s winning streak to five games, the Warriors have also remained unbeaten in 2016 outscoring its opponents 31-5.
Bowman knows his team can be accused of flipping a switch when they face their opponents, but it’s up to him and his fellow seniors to make sure the switch stays “on.”
“It starts with senior leadership. We can’t play a bad game in the playoffs or it’s over,” he said. “So we try to remind ourselves in practice to give it your all. Coming into 2016 we didn’t want to play any bad games. We just want to build off each win, and keep playing with good intensity.”