Day three of the Toronto Titans tournament is when things really got kicked off. As the long distance teams begin arriving in town for the tournament, most teams will get their first game of the tournament underway, while others like the Hamilton Huskies will play their third in three nights already.
Results wise, it’s hard to say that Thursday’s play wasn’t a disappointing outcome for the Alliance squads in attendance. All nine teams had games and the overall record was just 2-7. It should be noted for some of these teams it was their first action of the year and there are still some kinks to work out. It isn’t until the entire tournament is over before we can accurately assess the results.
Chatham-Kent off to a rough start, losing 10-1 to the Toronto Marlboros
The Toronto Marlboros probably aren’t the first team you want to see when entering the first tournament of the hockey season. The Marlies, perennial OHL Cup contenders, once again showed that they are a championship caliber club, putting up 10 goals on the Cyclones. Brayden Fryfogle notched the lone goal for Chatham and top Alliance prospect Deni Goure got on the score sheet with an assist. The Cyclones will try to rebound in their second game of the tournament against Ajax-Pickering on Friday.
Windsor Jr. Spitfires fall 3-1 in close matchup with Toronto Red Wings
Windsor is definitely a team that I expect to make some waves this season and they played very well against a Red Wings team that should be in the top four of the GTHL conversation this season. Max Donoso got the call in goal and was strong once again allowing just a single goal until with just 1:23 remaining in the game, Justin Ertel put one past him which turned out to be the eventual game winner. Lee Knight was the lone goal scorer for Windsor. They look for win number one of the tournament against Burlington Friday afternoon before taking on Little Caesars in the evening.
Hamilton runs out of steam against Guelph losing 5-1
Hamilton was playing in their third game of the tournament on Thursday evening and they started out pretty strong. The Huskies got out to a 1-0 lead on an early marker by Spencer Marler in the first period. Hamilton continued to play Guelph close until the midway point of the second period when the team admittedly ran out of gas. Guelph would score five unanswered and win 5-1. Riley George took the loss in the goal. Hamilton will try to avoid the dreaded 0-4 tournament record when they do battle with Team Illinois on Saturday afternoon.
Lambton Jr. Sting lose tournament opener 5-1 to Vaughan Kings
The Lambton Jr. Sting got their tournament underway with a matchup against the Vaughan Kings. Vaughan is yet another GTHL team that will be an interesting team to watch this season. For Lambton, Owen Lukings registered the lone goal as Vaughan would get out to a 3-0 lead before ending the game 5-1. Lambton has two games on Friday against Richmond Hill and Clarington as they look to get into the win column.
Sun County Panthers continue Alliance trend, fall 5-1 to Whitby Wildcats
It seems to be a recurring theme, but the Sun County Panthers began their tournament with a 5-1 loss at the hands of a strong Whitby Wildcats team. SCP, like I said in their team preview, will take some time to gel as a squad with so many new faces to the team. Luka Dobrich got the call in goal for this one and allowed all five Whitby goals. The lone tally for the Panthers came off the stick of Trevor Larue. SCP gets the Mississauga Reps and a tough Buffalo Jr. Sabres team on Friday.
Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs can’t find the back of the net, lose 2-0 to North Central.
EMC and North Central actually played quite a tight game for the opening two periods as the two teams went into the final period still knotted at zero. The Predators would get two past goaltender Max Beckford in the 3rd period to take the game 2-0. The Chiefs will need to avoid the penalty box going forward as they afforded NCP with seven powerplays in the game. The Chiefs get the Toronto Jr. Canadiens and a stellar Pittsburgh Penguins Elite team on Friday.
Waterloo Wolves nab Alliance’s first win on Thursday, 4-2 winners over Quinte
The night was beginning to look dreary for the Alliance until the Wolves were able to pull out a 4-2 win over the Quinte Red Devils. Owen Parsons led the way for Waterloo tallying a goal and two assists while Jaxson Murray, Kyle Maloney and Tyler Moore would add the other goals. Parsons’s goal came less than 30 seconds after Quinte had made it a 3-2 game. Marshall Nicholls got the win in net for the Wolves. Waterloo will try to continue their winning ways with dates against the Mississauga Rebels and the Oakville Rangers Friday.
London Jr. Knights drop their first game, 4-1 to Sudbury Wolves
In perhaps the most surprising results, the London Jr. Knights couldn’t get past Sudbury on their way to a 4-1 loss. London, who didn’t appear to have any preseason exhibition games scheduled, gave up two goals in a matter of 43 seconds to go down 2-0 in the first period. Brett Harrison would net the only Jr. Knights goal to make it 2-1 but Sudbury added one in the following two periods to end up at a 4-1 final. London will look for better results Friday with games against YSE and Kingston.
Jr. Rangers improve to 2-0 with a 3-0 win over Halton Hurricanes
Kitchener ended a tough night for the Alliance on a winning note with a 3-0 shutout over the Halton Hurricanes. The Jr. Rangers would do all of their damage in 2nd period as they got goals from Reilly McMahon (his 2nd of the tournament), Luc Brzustowski and Marko Sikic. Brandon Abbott got the start in net and earned the shutout. Kitchener has just one game on Friday but it should be a barn burner as they take on the ultra talented Chicago Mission.
Check back on Saturday for continued coverage of the Titans Tournament with all nine Alliance teams in action and the positioning for the round of 16 really starts to take shape.