In all reality, you could look at the standings in the Alliance and believe that this game was going to be a cake walk for the Wolves. They were sitting near the top of the standings, riding a seven game winning streak while Cambridge was sitting at the bottom still searching for their first win.
Needless to say, this game did not go that way whatsoever. As I have talked about for a while now, Cambridge another very tight game and gave Waterloo everything they could handle.
The game began with what has become quite a trend for Wolves games of the past few weeks, Waterloo getting off to a terribly slow start, much to the chagrin of head coach Shawn Dietrich. Cambridge was forcing many missed passes and seemed to anticipate a lot of Waterloo moves, intercepting the puck which turned into a couple of quality chances against Wolves netminder Alex Metzger.
At the beginning of the second period, that is when Waterloo began to really up the pressure and that is when former Wolves goalie Kailem Chappelle turned it onto overdrive. Chappelle was seeing every puck that came his way, swallowing up the majority of shots and not giving up any significant rebounds. It wasn’t until Waterloo captain Chris Playfair scored what could be considered the Alliance goal of the year that Waterloo got on the board.
Playfair received a pass parallel to the goal line and was able to bring the puck backwards, between his legs and past Chappelle for what even Chappelle called a goal of the year candidate.
Alliance goal of the year candidate goes to @_ChrisPlayfair sadly it had to be on me
— Kailem Chappelle (@KailemChappelle) November 20, 2015
As for the Hawks offense, it was clear how Waterloo was planning to defend any attack. Waterloo seemed to focus a lot of their effort on winger Kevin Quinn and not allowing him any space to pick up speed for any rush into their zone.
The final 20 minutes was much like the second period with Waterloo continuing to maintain control of the puck and not allowing much, if any pressure from Cambridge forwards. Midway through the final period, Playfair was at it again as he picked the top corner on Chappelle to make it 2-0 for Waterloo and that would be the final.
Overall, both teams continued to play as they have over the past couple of weeks. Cambridge played a tight defensive game just not being able to muster up enough offense for the win while Waterloo continued to start slow but end very strong as they extended their win streak to eight games.
For Cambridge, other than the obvious pick of Chappelle, I would have to say the line of Quinn, Matthew Chard and Kolton Mooney really proved to be a nuisance for Waterloo defenders. While the defense focused on Quinn, Chard and Mooney played an integral part in keeping the offense going. With Mooney taking on many of the guys he played with last season, I would say it was probably his best game of the year that I have seen.
With an honorable mention to Alex Metzger in net, Chris Playfair is the choice when looking at a player of the game for Waterloo. Not only did he score both Waterloo goals, but his work on the forecheck really kept the Hawks defense on their toes and created many scoring chances.