Rams fall to Lions in double overtime
TORONTO - The perfect start to the season for the No. 6 Ryerson Rams men’s hockey team came to an end at the hands of the York Lions Saturday night.
Tied at one after three periods of play and five minutes of 4-on-4 overtime action, York’s defenceman Derek Sheppard blocked a point shot off the stick of Ryerson’s Mitchell Theoret (Kitchener, Ont.) to spring himself on a breakaway late in double overtime. Barrelling in on the Rams’ goaltender Charlie Graham (Toronto), the OUA West first team all-star deked to his right and bulged the twine with his backhand to end the game.
The loss drops Ryerson’s record to 4-0-1 but keeps them atop the OUA West with nine points. York improves to 4-2-0 and now sits in a tie for second place in the division.
The Rams got on the board first late in the opening frame. After serving his two minute minor for tripping, Vince Figliomeni (Bolton, Ont.) hopped out of the penalty box and picked up a pass from Ryerson’s defensive zone. Catching the Lions’ defenders sleeping in transition, Figliomeni slid the puck over to Austin Kosack (Oakville, Ont.) up the ice. Kosack found a streaking Jamie Lewis (Richmond Hill, Ont.) on the far side and he snapped it over the blocker of the Lions’ netminder Mack Shields from the top of the circle. Lewis’ third goal of the season with nine seconds left in the frame gave the Rams a 1-0 edge after 20 minutes.
Ryerson didn’t have that lead for long though. Three minutes into the second period, York’s Trevor Petersen took advantage of a Rams’ turnover, skated across the blueline and wired a shot past Graham to knot things up at one.
The rest of the game proved to be a true goaltending battle as both Graham and Shields made a number of phenomenal stops to send the game past 60 minutes. Graham (4-0-1) finished with 19 saves in the losing effort while Shields (4-1-0) stopped 26 of Ryerson’s 27 shots.
The Rams will look to get back to their winning ways when they travel to Ottawa on Friday. Puck drop between Ryerson and the Carleton Ravens (3-3-0) is scheduled for 7:00 p.m at the Carleton Ice House.
NOTES: Ryerson freshman Josh Sterk (Arthur, Ont.) nearly scored the winning goal with only a couple of minutes left in the third period. Unfortunately for him, his shot from the slot hit the crossbar… Sheppard’s breakaway wasn’t the only one Graham faced in double overtime. Right after the opening faceoff, Rams’ defenceman Alex Basso (Toronto) was stripped of the puck by Daniel Nikandrov. One-on-one with the first-year goaltender, Nikandrov deked to his left but couldn’t beat Graham’s outstretched pad… Despite the loss, Ryerson remains one of two teams in the OUA that has yet to lose in regulation. The East division-leading UOIT Ridgebacks (5-0-0) are the other.