Champions again!!! Nordiques capture first-ever STR 3-peat Nordiques finish off Ice Paddys again to take 2011 Winter Championship
17 March 2011 The third and final game of the 2011 winter T6 championship took place on St. Patrick's Day. The luck of the Irish was shining not on the Ice Paddys but on a humble group of culturally diverse players wearing Nordiques sweaters. For the Nordiques, the 5-1 win caps a 15-4-1 season and captures the coveted winter 2011 crown. This is the 3rd consecutive championship for the T6 Nordiques stretching back to the spring 2010 season. By all indications, this is the first time a club has ever won three straight titles at STR.
The game itself was somewhat uneventful and even similar in many ways to game 1 of the series. In that game, the Ice Paddys pulled of a relatively easy 4-1 win. In game 3 it was the Nordiques with a convincing 5-1 win. Clearly, the big game was game 2 highlighted by the Mike Robinson hat trick and OT winning goal. Nordiques players look back to that game as not only a pivotal win, a win which tied the series and extended new life to the Nordiques, but also a win that delivered a body blow to the Ice Paddys that they just could not recover from.
Game 3 was close. In fact, going into the 3rd period the Nordiques held just a 2-1 lead. The team was relieved to finally see the Nordiques score first in this series. Again, it was Mike Robinson with another cool effort, pulling the goalie to his right, then moving left and hitting his target. It didn't take long for Ice Paddys to respond and the score was 1-1. The first line of Roth-Jachimsky-Roth had been dominating their opponents with each shift. It was just a matter of time before Charlie Roth hit the neutral zone with speed and the puck on his blade. Charlie blew past his defenders to give the Nordiques a breakaway goal and a 2-1 edge. There it remained into the 3rd. The pressure was on the Ice Paddys. Would they respond?
When a team has a 2-1 lead in the 3rd, everyone is acutely aware that the next goal in the game is huge and a potential momentum-turner. Throughout the second and third period, the Nordiques did an impressive job on the forecheck, none better than Delorey/Nash/Robinson, and on defense too. Blue line pairings tonight were Modugno-Holden, DiMartino-Simon, and Gioia-Vranos. They all withstood some pressure but made sure that Fratturo had good vision in the crease and saw what was coming. Fratturo made several key plays by covering up on pucks that were bouncing in a frenzied scramble of sticks and skates and bodies in front of him. It would have taken a fluke goal to beat Fratturo tonight, and it never came. With the stakes high, the Paddys couldn't answer the call today.
The Nordiques have always been a big 3rd period team and tonight was no different. The next goal of the game was scored by the Nordiques, and it came from none other than Mike Robinson, again. If your counting, that's 5 goals in 2 games for Mike...all BIG ones. And again, Mike put a great move on the goalie for the important cushion goal. The air was pretty much out of the Ice Paddys sails with that goal. Shortly after, Charlie Roth (again!) had some room and ripped a lethal slapshot that went through everything in its path except the twine. That was Roth's 3rd goal in 2 games.
In the last minute as the Ice Paddys pulled their goalie in favor of an extra attacker, we saw a wonderful display of unselfishness by the first line who was just trying to defend and kill the clock. All 6 Ice Paddys skaters were down low trying to score and somehow Charlie Roth escaped with the puck unopposed. Skating into the offensive zone Charlie could have easily put it home. But instead, he passed it (off the post mind you) to centerman Scott Jackimsky, who passed it off the crossbar (it takes tremendous skill to do that just right) and onto the welcoming blade of hard-working and often unheralded winger Chris Roth who tucked it away for the game's final goal.
The Nordiques no doubt were the better team on the ice tonight. Often times in the past they were not. Despite three straight championships, the team has always had to find a way to beat a better team to win. In the past 9 championship games over three championship series, the Nordiques haven't won game one. So, they had to come back and win 2 straight as they did this week against the number one seed Ice Paddys.. The Nordiques accomplished that in the spring as well against an 18-0 Anderson Analytics team and a stronger Ice Paddys team in the summer. It takes guts, sacrifice, courage and passion. It takes a group of players who stand together and support one another. It takes wily veterans who provide leadership and skilled players executing. It takes every player doing their job, right down to third line checkers who make the other team's night as miserable as possible.
Congratulations to all Nordiques players, both on the T5 and those on the T6 squads. It was a fantastic winter season. The Nordiques tip their caps to Ice Paddys and the rest of the T6 teams for playing so well during the long winter season.
Nordiques Winter 2011 Roster (Nordiques Championships won in parenthesis)
Rich Gioia D Captain (5) Peter DiMartino D Alt-Captain (4) Rich Bruno D Alt-Captain (5) Brian Fratturo G (3)
Jim Cook - D (5) Paul Modugno - D (5)
James Delorey - F (4)
Breck Masterson - F (3) Mike Robinson - F (3) Mike Schwartz - F (3) Andrew Vranos - D (3) Dave Brion - F (3)
Tim Nash - F (2) Tyler Schinto - F (2) Charles Pevsner - F (2)
Charlie Roth - F (1) Chris Roth - F (1) Scott Jachimsky - F (1) Kevin McCully - F (1) Kent Holden - D (1) Matt Simon - D (1)
Robinson hat trick & OT winner gives Nordiques life Nordiques bid for 3rd straight crown on Thursday
14 March 2011 The Nordiques struggled again Saturday night (March 12) in their first championship game versus Ice Paddys. It was the second game in a row where the Nordiques failed to contain their opponents. In the elimination game vs 6Nomads last week (March 9), the Nordiques' Charlie Roth scored a buzzer beating goal for the win. Despite Charlie's (and Tim Nash's) efforts that night, it was written that the team struggled to get going. Those struggles continued into Saturday night. But this time the Nordiques weren't so lucky. The team battled hard again but fell behind early. Not mounting much of a comeback, it was the Paddys who took game one and set their sights on ending the Nordiques run of consecutive championships. Game 2 would take place in less than 24 hours.
Again on Sunday (March 13), it was Ice Paddys who took a commanding 3-1 lead early. Between the 1st and 2nd period, goal tender Brian Fratturo threw the "challenge flag" at himself and his team mates. "Boys, I will shut them down the rest of the game. Can you get us a few goals?" The team responded with their second goal. This time it was Charlie Roth hitting the twine. Now at 3-2 the momentum was definitely turning in the Nordiques favor. Captain Rick Gioia, in obvious pain after blocking 2 shots on the same shift, lifted his team even more. Putting that pain aside, Ricky pleaded, "Don't go down without leaving every bit of effort on the ice boys. Three in a row...this is our opportunity. Let's take it to them NOW."
With their backs against the wall, the Nordiques went about making it happen. It was James Delorey and Breck Masterson who drew much of the attention in the offensive zone. But the puck found Mike Robinson in an open space and he pumped in his second of the day. The score was 3-3 now and the Nordiques were flying high. For the rest of the period, the Ice Paddys were forced into a defensive posture, trying to hold off the Nordiques surge and hoping to make it into an extra frame.
And there it was...a 5-on-5 overtime for 5 minutes. If the game wasn't settled in the first 5 minutes, then it would be 4-on-4 and so on. Soon, those details wouldn't matter. It was James Delorey taking the first face off at center ice to start the sudden death period. Wingers Mike Robinson and Breck Masterson were to each side. Defensemen Matt Simon and Peter DiMartino held the blue line in case the puck came back. Big James won the face off and Mike Robinson gathered the puck. Mike calmly skated the puck up the middle and into Paddys' zone. It seemed that no one was willing to impede Mike's progress. Then the Paddys defense retreated a little more and soon obstructed the vision of their goalie. Mike used the screen and let go a glove-side wrister. The goalie didn't see it till it was too late.
Elation on the ice and on the Nordiques bench! Another vintage Nordiques comeback. A win that gives life to a team that sorely needed a lift. It was Fratturo's challenge and net minding. It was Gioia's inspirational play. It was strong two-way play by Charlie Roth and line mates again, and it was a defense that held up strong in the last 2 periods. But it was Mike Robinson's hat trick goal that won the game. "With our backs against the wall, we play our best" Mike said later on, adding "it was a fun game".
The OT winner by Mike gives his team a chance to play for their third consecutive championship crown since spring 2010. Mike, along with his line mates and goaltender Brian Fratturo (and several other Nordiques on the ice Sunday night) played in each of the last two championship games. That helps. The Nordiques will be sending a lot of experience onto the ice for this final and deciding game.
To win, it will take a big effort from the Nordiques. It will take all that experience. It will take 100% focus and devotion to this one game. 100% passion and 100% heart. Everyone doing their jobs, playing together and sacrificing together. That's what it will take to win a 3rd consecutive championship. The Nordiques have turned the tables now and are testing the will and desire by their opponents. This series has followed nearly the same script as the summer championship when these 2 teams last battled for the crown. That series went three games as well. The Nordiques have answered the call before and will answer again on March 17 at 8pm.
5Nordiques eliminated by Pub Crawlers 3-1 Nordiques battle hard; Season ends with heads held high
12 March 2011 Our T5Nordiques battled Pub Crawlers for every inch of ice in the second round elimination game Saturday night at STR. Things appeared to be shaping up perfectly as the Nordiques trailed on the scoreboard by just 2-1 in the 3rd. This time however it was the Pub Crawlers who finished on top. With the loss, the single-game elimination format drew the T5Nordiques winter season to a close.
It was clearly the most thrilling T5Nordiques season yet. Highlighting the season were shootout win against Pub Crawlers (last game of season) and the Christmas week dismantling of Barflies, also in a shootout. It was a season in which only the Nordiques, Pub Crawlers and Barflies each held 1st, 2nd or 3rd places at one point or another. In the post season, after defeating their T5North opponents in the first round, it was familiar foes in the second round. The Nordiques respectfully tip their caps to their opponents, north and south, for a well played season.
The 5Nordiques go into the break feeling very good about the season past and the season ahead. After a break and the St. Patrick's Day hockey tournament, the team will regroup and go at it again for the Spring 2011 season which will start by the end of March.
5Nordiques score 2 in last minute; Eliminate 5Nomads Nordiques 4-3 win caps wild night of hockey; Will play Pub Crawlers in 2nd elimination round
10 March 2011 The first round of T5 playoffs featured the top four T5-north teams playing the top four T5-south teams. The #3 seeded 5Nordiques (south) faced the #2 seed 5Nomads (north). A well-played game led to a stunning Nordiques victory. Battling back from deficits two-times in the 3rd period, the win 4-3 vaults the Nordiques to a 2nd round match up with Pub Crawlers Saturday Mar 12 at 9:30pm. Meanwhile the loss eliminates 5Nomads from winter 2011 post season play. It is an interesting twist of fate that both Nordiques teams (T5 and T6) eliminated both Nomads teams in the final seconds of the elimination round on consecutive nights.
All four Nordiques goals tonight were masterpieces. In the first period, after receiving a nice pass from Eric Farrell, Tim Matijcio beat Nomads goalie to the glove side to open the scoring. It wasn't until the end of the second period when Nomads responded, with 2 bang-bang tallies, to take a 2-1 lead going into the third. The Nordiques evened the score on a great effort by Anit Arora who fired a hard pass from the left circle to captain Rick Gioia who's stick was perfectly positioned for a tip-in goal. It looked like the game was over when the Nomads scored to take a 3-2 lead with 1:12 left in the game. But this is a special group of players who never quit, never back down.
Six T5 teams had already finished their games and many were gathered atop the west rink watching the final minutes of the game from the cozy confines of Ice View. No one expected, or believed, what they saw in the final minute of play. With desperation in each stride, the Nordiques pushed the puck from their defensive zone to their offensive zone. Putting immediate pressure on Nomads, the Nordiques fired two hard shots at the net. The Nomads were scrambling and were out of position. Nomads goalie stopped both, but on the second shot from the left circle, he pushed the rebound to the right and onto the stick of undefended Anit Arora. Anit, cool and sure handed, buried the shot from about 3 feet out to tied the game at 3 apiece with 0:54 left on the clock. The Ice View crowd erupted.
Perhaps the Nomads were already thinking about overtime. If so, that was a fatal error. With the puck deep in the Nordiques zone and time ticking away, the Nordiques broke out of their zone with just under 20 seconds left. The Nomads were either gassed from a strong forechecking effort in their zone or just got lazy. The Nordiques rushed the puck up ice and found themselves in a 2-on-1 at center ice. The Ice View crowd, aware of the clock and what was at stake, was now raucous. In a few seconds there would be a hero and a goat.
At full stride, it was Eric Farrell handling the puck with Tim Matijcio wide to Eric's left. The Nomads defenseman was perfectly positioned but tragically lost an edge and went down. The speedy wingers moved in alone on Nomads goalie who was playing for Eric's shot. Eric didn't flinch as he appeared to tee up his shot. Then with ease, Eric slid a perfect pass over to Tim who had a whole lot of net to shoot at. Tim nailed it with just 14 seconds left to put his team into the second round with a stunning 4-3 win. A heroic effort by Eric, Tim, Anit, Ricky and the team. Sadly, a terrible loss for a very good Nomads team.
It was a very exciting win and an inspirational game for the Nordiques. It took four perfectly executed goals, great defense, and a big goaltending effort to defeat the favored Nomads. In fact, this is as good of a win as any in 10-years of Nordiques history at STR. Truly an awesome comeback. Perhaps the best comeback ever (and there were MANY this season and over the years).
The Nordiques get set to play Pub Crawlers in the second round elimination game on Saturday night. The Nordiques beat Pub Crawlers in a shoot out last week to end the regular season. The winner will then face the winner of Barflies/Brennan's who will also play Saturday in an elimination game. To get to this point, each of these T5-south teams defeated their T5-north opponent in the first round. Pub Crawlers shot down Gunners 3-1, while Barflies came from behind to beat Puck Bandits 3-2. In maybe the biggest upset of the night, #4 seed Brennan's knocked off #1 Norsemen 1-0.
Nordiques escape Nomads with Roth buzzer-beater Nordiques move-on to defend Championship in Ice Paddys rematch
9 March 2011 The T6 Nordiques narrowly escaped Nomads last night in their half of the single game elimination round. With the 5-4 win, the Nordiques advance to the championship round versus Ice Paddys who also won a close elimination game last night against Lightspeed 4-3.
The Nordiques are now in the position to defend their champions title against Ice Paddys. Both teams earned this opportunity. However, after reeling off 10 wins in their last 11 (and defeating Nomads 3 times in the regular season), last night's win was anything but comfortable or easy. The team struggled in the areas of puck control, break outs, zone containment and most of all PROTECTING A LEAD. There is no doubt that Nomads had an awful lot to do with keeping the Nordiques on their heels and out of their comfort zone. Nomads goalie, both tall and wide, played very well for them, and his team never gave up the fight.
After a scoreless opening period, it was the Nomads who got on the scoreboard first with a breakaway goal as their man sprang loose from the penalty box and tucked one behind Fratturo. That woke up the Nordiques, who responded strongly with goals by Tim Nash, Charlie Roth and Captain Fantastic to take a 3-1 lead.
For the second straight game, a 3-1 lead at the beginning of the 3rd period quickly turned into a 3-3 tie. There it remained until Breck Masterson used his speed and broke in alone on the big Nomads goalie to give the Nordiques a 4-3 advantage. Again, the Nordiques were unable to hold a lead (albeit in a short handed situation). It appeared the game would go into an overtime session at 4-4. With one final face off in the Nomads zone, and the Nordiques #1 line on the ice, Charlie Roth scored the game winner with virtually no time remaining on the clock to send his team to the championship. The team was both fortunate to score the goal and to score it with no time remaining.
Teams captains were aware of the struggle, but chose to focus on the positives. "The Nomads weren't the only team working hard and not giving up tonight" said Rick Gioia. "It wasn't pretty, Rich Bruno said, but not all wins are". DiMartino followed with "this win is a testimony to our team's willingness to continue to battle. It may be true that the Nordiques didn't play their best game tonight, but you have to recognize that we DID show up with courage and fortitude". True, that and Charlie Roth.
The T6Nordiques will face Ice Paddys Saturday March 12 at 8pm in game #1 of the best of 3 championship round.
Nordiques in elimination showdown with Nomads T5S and T6 Nordiques to play T5N and T6 Nomads this week
7 March 2011 The T6 Nordiques will play Nomads-Sixers on Wednesday March 9 at 10:30pm in the playoff elimination round. The Nordiques finished in second place in the regular season with 25 points and Nomads finished third with 18 points. Another T6 game will be played on Wednesday as well, with the first place Ice Paddys (26 points) taking on 4th place Lightspeed (13 points). It has been a long time since Lightspeed saw a winter season playoff game. The Nordiques are attempting to capture their 3rd straight crown going back to spring 2010. But to do so they will have to beat Nomads first before an anticipated rematch with Ice Paddys who battled hard but lost the summer championship to the Nordiques.
The T5S Nordiques will play T5N Nomads on Thursday March 10 at 10:30pm. The 5Nordiques turned in its finest T5 performance (23 points) since entering T5 play over a year ago.The top three T5S teams (Pub Crawlers, Bar Flies and Nordiques) finished just 4 points apart and at least 4 points ahead of 4th place Brennan's. By virtue of their 3rd place finish, the Nordiques will play the 2nd place 5Nomads of the T5 North division. The 5Nomads finished the regular season at 12-4 (24 points), 1 point better than the 5Nordiques. Other T5 matchups include #1S Pub Crawlers playing #4N Gunners, #2S Bar Flies vs #3N Puck Bandits, and #4S Brennan's taking on #1N Norsemen.
See Winter 2011 Results tab to the left for final T5S and T6 standings.
5Nordiques split final 2 games, clinch 3rd place Will face 5Nomads in Elimination Round Thursday Mar 10
5 March 2011 T5Nordiques finished the winter regular season schedule with an satisfying OT shootout win over Pub Crawlers on Friday night. Prior to that the team dropped three in a row to Bald Eagles (7-4), Brennan's (4-3 SO) and Parts Unknown (3-2). The team is looking ahead to the playoffs, having finished 3rd overall in the tier with an 11-4-1 record (23 points).
The season finale was an exciting and gritty game. The Nordiques jumped out to an early lead on a Tim Matijcio tally. After falling behind 3-1, Kevin Unger gathered a loose puck up high and went in on a break away. Kevin rarely misses on these chances and he didn't miss this time either. With the score 3-2 and time slipping away in the 3rd period, Eric Farrell out-strided pinching Pub Crawlers defense and buried his own break away goal to give the Nordiques life and send the game to a shoot out.
Again, it was Eric Farrell who found Pub Crawlers goalie's weak spot to give his team an early lead in the shoot out. After Pub Crawlers tied it, the team selected Jim Cook as the 5th and final shooter. Cookie launched a masterpiece, coolly roofing a quick wrister to the right corner for the dramatic win over a disliked opponent.
Throughout the contest, it was Brian Fratturo time and time again making big saves on hard shots amid thick traffic at the crease. PC tried many times to unravel the Nordiques with late hits including running the goaltender, and thoroughly unsportsmanlike behavior throughout the game. The team kept its composure, took care of business first, and turned an apparent loss into a very satisfying win.
The tie, however, secured first place for Pub Crawlers who finish with 27 points. They edged out 2nd place Bar Flies by one point and the Nordiques by 4 points, who finish with 23. Brennan's hold the final playoff spot in 5S by accumulating 20 points. In a playoff twist, T5 North will face off against T5 South in an 8-team inter-tier showdown. The 5Nordiques will play its first round elimination game against the 5Nomads of the north on Thursday March 10 at 10:30pm. This is both an odd and interesting decision by the league as none of the teams in 5S have played any of the teams in 5N in the regular season.
A day before the Friday shootout win, the 5Nordiques were expected to romp the 7-8 Bald Eagles. The Nordiques battled hard but fell victim to bad bounces, unfortunate calls, and lackadaisical play. Captain Rick Gioia refused to blame the result on bad bounces and calls but did say the team was slow and let the game come to them instead of taking it to their opponent. He said "we didn't battled hard enough for loose pucks and as a result we were hemmed in our zone for long stretches of time. That ultimately cost us". Dr. Jay played well in goal but "didn't get the support that he needed from us in front.". In the loss, Jim Delorey, Justin Matijcio, James Ondo, and Eric Farrell scored goals for the Nordiques. Bald Eagles finish at 8-8 (16 points) and their season is over. In retrospect, this Nordiques loss did not affect the Nordiques playoff placement, finishing 3 points behind Bar Flies.
Nordiques win squeaker in finale Roth, Nash carry Nordiques to 4-3 win; Amass 12-3-1 winter record and 2nd place finish
28 February 2011 Powered by the goal scoring of Charlie Roth (2) and Tim Nash (2), the Nordiques won their final regular season game in a 4-3 squeaker. For the moment, the Nordiques have climbed back into first place, but placements and playoff opponents won't be set until tonight's Ice Paddys/Lightspeed result. A Lightspeed win will put them into the fourth playoff slot and drop Ice Paddys to second place. A win by Ice Paddys will lock them into first, bump Nordiques to 2nd place, and set the Nordiques first round match up with Nomads (3rd place finisher).
Fat Tire was playing for their playoff lives...a win and they were in, a loss and out. FT played very well and really turned up the heat when they fell behind. Their goalie played a terrific game and gave them a chance to win. After a scoreless first, the Nordiques tallied 3 times in the 2nd period with 2 Tim Nash goals (assists to wingers Masterson and DiMartino) and one by Charlie Roth (assisted by Chris Roth and Scott Jachimsky).
Perhaps the Nordiques let up a bit, but no one can deny that FT came on very strong at the beginning of the 3rd period. If the Nordiques scored the first goal, they could have effectively ended the game right there. But FT had other ideas. FT fought harder and were more tenacious around the net than they were earlier in the game. Eventually FT scored their first goal, then a second shortly after, and finally evened the score at 3-3 before the period was half over. FT had the "mo".
This was not the way the Nordiques envisioned the game ending. However, it proved to be a good test for the boys. By suppressing FT the rest of the way thanks to the courageous defensive play by Gioia/Holden/Simon/Bruno, the Nordiques took the momentum back and allowed the Roth/Roth/Jachimsky line to go to work. The line played their best late in the 3rd period. All three forwards seem to see the ice so well and know where their line mates are at all times, particularly Chris Roth in this contest. Tic-tac-toe, bang-bang, and Charlie scored the eventual winner. Before the game ended, a Nordiques penalty and a FT empty net gave the a 6 to 4 man advantage. Goalie Pete Gudwin sealed the deal. Game over.
Having amassed an impressive 12-3-1 record (25 points), and scoring a franchise high 76 goals (versus 42 goals against) the Nordiques put together a very solid campaign. After starting the season 2-2-1 after 5 games, the Nordiques went 10-1 in the final 11 games. Peaking at the right time, the Nordiques now look forward to next week's first round playoff elimination game. The team is ready to increase its focus, passion and intensity for the playoffs. This is what we play for. We will be amped-up for the playoffs, amped-up for winning a third consecutive championship crown.
Nordiques Tie, Drop Shootout to Brennan's 5Nordiques clinch 3rd place, possibly higher
26 February 2011 The Nordiques T5 team was tied 2-2 in the 3rd period in a fast paced, back-n-forth tilt with Brennan's Saturday night. At about 7 minutes remaining, Brennan's got the go ahead goal. Morons that they are, Brennan's then took one stupid penalty after another. Brennan's played virtually the rest of the period shorthanded. On a 5 on 3 power play situation, the Nordiques tied the game at 3 but could muster no more, despite many shots and chances, as Brennan's netminder made several fine saves and gave up hardly any rebound chances.
In the overtime shootout, only one goal was scored and that was by Brennan's who took the win and secured a 4th place finish for the season. Brennan's is playoff bound against the yet-to-be determined first-place finisher. For the T5Nordiques, the point assured them of no worse than a 3rd place finish with a second place or even a first place finish possible (due to a head-to-head tie-breaker advantage with Barflies). The Nordiques will have to win their final 2 games of the season and get some help from teams above them in order to move up.
The Nordiques will finish out their regular season this week -- and determine their playoff placement -- with games against Bald Eagles (Thursday March 3 at 9:30pm) and Pub Crawlers (Friday March 4 at 10:10pm). Bald Eagles have already been eliminated from playoff contention and Pub Crawlers currently sit in second place with 2 games to play. Pub Crawlers is 3 points ahead of the Nordiques now and just 1 point behind first place Barflies. Pub has a real shot at finishing first overall if they can win out, regardless of what Barflies do in their final game. For the Nordiques, a second or third place finish will result in a playoff showdown with either Barflies or Pub Crawlers. Playoffs begin next week.
Nordiques freeze Ice Paddys 6-4 Win streak at 5; Within 1 point of first place with 1 game remaining
15 February 2011 (To see updated league standings as of Feb 21, click on "Winter 2011 Results" tab to the left of this page).
In their 3rd and final attempt of the regular season, the Nordiques defeated Ice Paddys last night 6-4. The 6 goals scored is significant because it represents the most goals scored against Ice Paddys by any team through 15 games of the winter season. For the Nordiques, this is the 5th consecutive win (and 9 out of 10) and stops Paddys 3-game win streak as the teams look to build momentum for the playoff drive.
"In case Ice Paddys have a notion that they are going to waltz their way to their first championship, tonight's win is clear evidence that there are no easy roads and all roads go through Nordiques-nation as defending champions", said Tim Nash in a post game interview. Brian Fratturo added "No other team has shown more desire, heart, hustle and passion than the Nordiques in the past year". "What should be most frightening to Ice Paddys is that the Nordiques' best hockey is still to be played...that happens in March", said center Scott Jachimsky.
Adding 14 goals in the last 2 games, the Nordiques have now scored 72 goals through 15 games, the most by any team in T5 and T6 hockey. The Nordiques (11-3-1, 23 points) trail Ice Paddys (12-3, 24 points) in the standings by just 1 point with one regular season game left to play. Truth be told, the Nordiques are just looking to continue the momentum and feed off the positive energy that has been created over the 5-game win streak. The players readily admit that a first place finish is fine, but not a priority. Worth noting here is that the three most recent Nordiques championships have been won after finishing the regular season in first, second, and third places.
The Nordiques took to the ice last night without the services of injured team mates Brian Fratturo (G) and Peter DiMartino (D). However both players were on duty and on the bench in coaching roles. Said DiMartino, "If you can be here on Valentine's Day than so can I". Whether Brian and Peter played a role or not (most likely not), the team was inspired, and played one of its best games of the season. Combining both speed and puck control, Paddys struggled to keep up and never had a lead or share of the lead the entire game. Replacement goalie Jason provided all the Nordiques needed to secure the win.
The defense consisted of a 5-man rotation featuring Matt Simon, Kent Holden, Tyler Schinto, alt-captain Rich Bruno and captain Rich Gioia. The defense was involved in the offense by making several key rushes that created odd-man chances at times and at other times got the puck deep into Ice Paddys zone. From there, the forwards were ferocious around the net.
Kevin McCulley opened the scoring by ripping home a nice corner set up pass from Andrew Vranos. In a scramble in front of the net, Breck Masterson added another in the first to give the Nordiques a 2-0 lead going into the 2nd period. From there it was the Charlie Roth show, who along with brother Chris Roth and center Scott Jachimsky, put on a display of the finest play we've seen in T6 this season. From back checking to fore checking, from neutral zone control to offensive zone magic, the boys were flying and the Paddys just had no answer for them. In what is a clear testimony to his line's fantastic play, Charlie Roth bagged his 2nd hat trick in a row, including a goal from a nifty break away drop pass from brother Chris for the game's 5th. Shortly after, Jim Delorey hit Tim Nash with a hard pass and Tim exposed the goalie's stick-side to ice the game at 6-2. Ice Paddys scored two more on late power plays but it was too little too late.
After the game, the guys were feeling good about beating Ice Paddys who have been in first place virtually all season. For the Nordiques, with 2 consecutive championships in-hand (the last victory came against these same Ice Paddys) this win is a confidence builder. For Paddys, the loss has got to cast some doubts on whether they can muster the tangible and intangible qualities that the Nordiques have displayed. With a two week layover till the next game, the Nordiques will tune up against Fat Tire for their third and final meeting of the season on February 28. The Nordiques defeated Fat Tire twice already by a combined score of 17-4.
Post Script: The Nordiques were bestowed a team honor last night as Ice View management moved the Nordiques sweater front and center over the bar area. Prestigious real estate indeed. This is an acknowledgement of the teams togetherness, through good times and bad, to celebrate the game and each other and enjoy some of life' s good moments at the famed establishment. I suppose some of it has to do with the size of the coin that the team drops there too. But a lot of teams spend money there. Last night is a good example. After a 10:30pm Monday game (Valentine's Day nonetheless), 8 of the 11 people keeping the beer taps (and cash) flowing at Ice View were Nordiques. Stop by and see the Nordiques jersey on display.
Lastly, Happy Birthday Lou Gioia.
5Nordiques Lose to Parts 3-2 Win streak ends at 5 games
14 February 2011 Amid a 5 game win streak, the T5Nordiques unexpectedly dropped a close contest on Saturday night to Parts Unknown. Missing several players, the Nordiques played from behind all night but managed to tie the score at 2-2. Parts bagged the winning goal late in the third to take the 3-2 decision. Despite being tagged with the loss, Brian Fratturo played great. Along the way, Brian faced several break aways and 2-on-1s. On the other end, the Nordiques had trouble generating offense. With their point men forced to pinch from the blue line to create scoring chances, Parts was able to take advantage by being more aggressive and springing some odd-man rushes.
With three remaining on the T5S winter schedule, the 5Nordiques are 10-3 (20 points) and appear to be locked in to a top three finish in the standings. Despite the feeling that they let one get away on Saturday, the boys are upbeat and looking forward to their next game and the playoffs beyond. The Nordiques play fourth place Brennan's on Feb 26 and that may determine the ultimate playoff seeding. For Parts, the win improves their record to 4-9 and have nothing to look forward to except the start of the spring season.
Nordiques pound Red Bull 8-1 Win Streak at 4 games, 8 of last 9
11 February 2011 T6Nordiques put in another solid performance tonight with an 8-1 drubbing of Red Bull at STR. The game was much closer than indicated by the final score, as the Nordiques held just a 2-0 lead going into the final stanza. There was little doubt about the eventual outcome though.
Nordiques defense was in shut-down mode all night and handled everything Red Bull could throw at them. Nordiques blue liners tonight were Bruno, DiMartino, Gioia, Modugno, Simon. On top of that, both forward lines did a fantastic job converting outlet passes from the defense into offensive zone pressure and multiple scoring opportunities. When it was over, both forward lines (Roth/Roth/Jackimsky and McCulley/Nash/Delorey) scored 4 goals apiece, including a Roth hat-trick and two apiece by Delorey and Nash.
Brian Fratturo made his return to the ice after missing a few games on injured reserve. Seeing Brian back certainly appeared to give the Nordiques a lift. Frat was very steady, played the puck often, and stopped whatever came his way including a few very hard slap shots from the point.
In what has become a recurring pattern lately, the game was stopped several times for rough play and penalty disbursements. This has happened (more or less) in three straight games; against Fat Tire, Nomads, and Red Bull. With the playoffs looming and four teams chasing two of the remaining playoff slots, teams are stepping up the intensity level against the Nordiques, perhaps thinking the intimidation factor may help them in the event they see a first-round playoff or championship match against the Nordiques. When asked about that, captain Rich Gioia said, "that won't happen...our guys have been through it all, we are too tough and we will always have each other's backs". Adding, "the bigger the game, the bigger we play". Addressing the French media, Matt Simon was brief, saying, "Il bing sur. Nous pouvonsjouerce styletrop".
It seems that old time hockey has returned to the NHL recently, with a few games exceeding 300 penalty minutes in the past two weeks. It could be that Red Bull was taking a page from that script by initiating a lot of contact especially after the whistle and a few scraps. The target of their dissatisfaction appeared to be the big and tenacious centerman, Jim Delorey. To his credit, Jim didn't take a penalty all night, and was admirably restrained in is retaliation (not as true for alt-captain Peter DiMartino who doled out some retribution, and indeed found the penalty box). The bottom line is that big James forechecked and backchecked even harder. And around the net? Jim was perhaps the most menacing we've ever seen him.
The win is the 4th straight for the Nordiques and the 8th of the last 9. In the past 4 games, the Nordiques let up only one goal per game while scoring 27 over that span (almost a 7-to-1 ratio). Reaching the 10-win mark again (10-3-1), and 21 points for the winter with a few games left, the Nordiques keep pace with first place Ice Paddys (12-2, 24 points) who defeated Nomads 2-0 on Thursday. Ice Paddys and Nordiques will face off Monday February 14 at 10:30. With the first 2 playoff spots in the tier going to Ice Paddys and Nordiques, it appears the 3rd and 4th spots won't be determined till the end of the season. Right now, Nomads and Red Bull hold those places, but Fat Tire and Lightspeed are close in pursuit.
5Nordiques post 7-2 win
04 February 2011 The 5Nordiques pasted Trashers 7-2 last night at STR. With 20 points to their credit, the win keeps the Nordiques tied with Pub Crawlers at 10-2 atop the division. Bar Flies sits just one point ahead with 10-2-1(10-3) record, having played 13 games so far versus 12 for the Nordiques and Pub Crawlers. The loss sends Trashers to the thirteenth straight loss (0-13). The next 5Nordiques game will be Saturday February 12 versus Parts Unknown. Parts have lost two games in a row but won 3 of their last 5 games.
Justin Matijcio replaced Bill Farrell on the Nordiques first line. Not skipping a beat, Justin cashed in big with a hat trick. Anit Arora was checked hard to the boards, which drew a 5 minute major and the ejection of a Trashers goon. Nordiques defense played well all game, having little problem containing Trashers offensive efforts. In fact, the Nordiques didn't allow the second goal till late in the 3rd period. With Fratturo remaining on the injured-reserved list, Brian's replacement played real well. In addition to Justin's trick, Rick Gioia, Eric Farrell and Anit Arora also scored goals.
Nordiques fight to 4-1 win
01 February 2011 On a night that threatened (and delivered) an ice storm, the Nordiques stormed Nomads to take a 4-1 victory in a show down for second place in the winter standings. The game was marred by heated dust-ups and thrown punches which led to several penalties and stoppages in play. The Nordiques didn't instigate the rough stuff but took care of business when challenged. Despite the side show, the team played three periods of solid hockey, pressuring their opponent in both zones. Goalie Jay D put in a solid performance too, and played a technically near-perfect game between the pipes. With Brian Fratturo out and suffering from flu, Jay gave the team a big lift tonight and the guys played well in front of him.
The Nordiques went with 4 defensemen (DiMartino-Holden and Gioia-Vranos). The gutsy defensive effort was aided by the speed of forwards Jackimsky, Robinson and Masterson who back checked aggressively. On the offensive front, Delorey and Jackimsky centered 6 wingers.
After a tight first period, the Nordiques opened up a 2-0 lead late on goals by Jim Delorey and Tyler Schinto. After several Nordiques near misses, Nomads narrowed the lead to 2-1 after 2 periods. Long-time Nordique Kevin Unger gave his team some breathing room when he went in on a break away to score a key third goal early in the final period. With six minutes left in the game and the Nomads defense pinching, DiMartino picked off an errant pass high in the zone. He rushed the puck from the blue line, and put a hard shot on the Nomads goalie. Despite the save, DiMartino took his rebound off the boards and punched it in amid a scramble in front, with help from Jackimsky, Unger and Delorey, for the final goal of the game.
The win gives the Nordiques (9-3-1, 19 points) a firm hold of second place, three points behind first place Ice Paddys (11-2, 22 points) and a 5 point cushion over the third place Nomads (5-5-4, 14 points). The Nordiques and Nomads will likely play one another again in the first round of the playoffs, unless Red Bull (5-7-1, 11 points) makes a surge to third.
The Nomads seemed to be aware of the potential playoff matchup and perhaps because of this tried to send a gritty message tonight. Their message was met with a mix of restraint (most Nordiques stood their ground but maintained control more or less) and aggressive counter-responses when warranted (mostly by captain courageous Rich Gioia). The side show could not sidetrack the Nordiques however.
The main take away from this game is the Nordiques played very good hockey tonight and sent Nomads to their third loss in their last four games. The Nordiques also succeeded in sweeping all three contests against the Nomads this winter. Who ever the Nordiques play in the winter playoffs next month, they will see a Nordiques team that is coming together and putting out a determined team effort from whistle to whistle for 3 periods.
The Nordiques will face fourth place Red Bull next, on Friday February 11. The Nordiques are 2-0-1 against Red Bull this season.
Nordiques roll Fat Tire 10-1
22 January 2011 On a cold Friday night in Stamford, the 6Nordiques stepped onto STR ice under-manned. But it was clear that the eleven skaters that showed up, showed up BIG. The Nordiques scored early and often and rarely faced any real pressure. Last night's 10-1 win improves the winter record to 8-4 (8-3-1) for 17 points with four games remaining before playoffs. The Fat Tire loss keeps them just behind Red Bull in the standings, outside playoff contention. With the placements still to be determined, the Nordiques are assured to advance to the playoff round along with Ice Paddys, 6Nomads and one other team (presumably Red Bull or Fat Tire). See the "Winter 2011 Results" tab for the latest T6 and T5S standings.
Skating 7 forwards and 4 defensemen, the Nordiques showed great effort and controlled the game throughout. Defense pairings included DiMartino-Bruno and Vranos-Arora (Anit and Andrew scored 1 goal each). The forward line of Jackimski (2 goals) and Charlie and Chris Roth (1 goal each) played fabulously on both sides of the red line. The second liners, including Delorey, Masterson, Pevsner, Schwartz scored a goal apiece. Alternate captains DiMartino and Bruno, both possessing considerable scoring skills, resisted the urge to join the scoring party given the rout.
Brian Fratturo made his return to goal last night, having taken some time off to recovered from a back injury. The limited work load was probably a good thing for Brian with what will certainly be a busy hockey schedule in February and March. There was one nervous moment when two Fat Tire players crashed Brian's net hard. Brian was under the pile of men (and quite OK with it, in fact) with the puck safely and securely beneath him.
Also last night (on the STR west rink) the Nomads played another regulation tie -- their fifth -- (this time against Red Bull) and winning their first OT shootout contest. With that win, it appears the Nomads (unofficially) may have tied the Nordiques for second place, at least temporarily. The Nordiques have one game in-hand on Nomads who have played 13. Whether a team finishes in second or third places has little significance though. In terms of tie-breakers for those looking down the road, the Nordiques defeated Nomads two times this winter (one of those wins was a tie/OT shootout victory). The Nordiques and Nomads play each other a third and final game of the regular season on Tuesday February 1 (next game).
Nordiques Win a Weekend Pair
17 January 2011 It was a winning weekend for Nordiques hockey with both T5 & T6 teams posting convincing wins without the services of starting goaltender Brian Fratturo. With the win, the 5Nordiques moved into a first place tie with rival Pub Crawlers, one point ahead of Barflies. Meanwhile, the 6Nordiques remain in second place, closing the gap with first place Ice Paddys to three points. Both teams will be ready to play again this coming weekend. Late Friday night the 6Nordiques will play Fat Tire. And then a hotly anticipated showdown on Sunday night as 5Nordiques go into battle against Pub Crawlers for sole possession of first place. Winning results will be necessary to stay at or near the top of the respective tiers as the final quarter of the winter season begins.
This weekend's 5Nordiques showdown will be epic for other reasons too. Sunday will be the final game for Bill Farrell who for years has been a larger than life player, and the heart, soul, and guts of Nordiques teams. We hope Bill finds greener pastures and much happiness in the Pittsburgh area. For years we have marveled at Billy's pure ability, his shooting and his skating, and most definitely his competitiveness. It has probably never occurred to him that many of his team mates found leadership and inspiration in Bill Farrell and we always played bigger when he took the ice with us. He will be missed greatly. Billy is a great guy, a fantastic player, and a great Nordiques team mate pure and simple. Sunday's game should mean a lot more to this team than a first place showdown. Billy your team wants you to know you have always been a class act and as much as anything else, we will miss your tremendous passion for the game, and your insightfully funny sense of humor. We all genuinely appreciate the hundreds of times you trekked back and forth from Long Island to play hockey games with us. In doing so it has always been clear that you love us too. Godspeed, our friend. And, LGP!!!!
Postscript (Jan 20) - The Jan 23 5Nordiques game has been postponed till late February. It would appear that Bill Farrell has played his final Nordiques game. How fitting that it was a resounding win followed by a few beers at Ice View with friends and team mates. A Nordique now and forever, #66 will always be reserved for you if you should make your way back to the area, even if just for a weekend.
5Nordiques topple Van Team On Sunday evening, following a big New York Jets win, 5Nordiques lifted their winter record to an impressive 9-2 with a 7-4 win over Van Team. After falling behind early, replacement goalie "Jay-D" got his legs under him and limited Van Team shooters to two goals the rest of the way and looked great doing it. Nordiques responded, taking the lead late in the first period, never looking back.
The Matijcio brothers scored two goals each and Kevin Unger scored two more sandwiched around a Doug Eng tally. At least three of these goals were breakaway winners. All were highlight reel material. The win keeps 5Nordiques tied with Pub Crawlers, but now it's for first place, as Barflies drop one point behind the pace in T5S.
6Nordiques slow down Lightspeed Friday night, replacement goalie "Joe-L" put in an efficient performance that propelled the 6Nordiques to a 5-1 victory over Lightspeed. Injured goaltender Brian Fratturo donned a shirt and tie and joined his team as bench coach. With Captain Rick Gioia also out of action, Fratturo's leadership was appreciated by the boys. He was, well, something to behold (the Jagermeister and cigarettes are just a rumor -- didn't really happen).
The team played with 4 defensemen and they had a great game by limiting Lightspeed shooters to a few chances. The Modugno-Simon line and the Matijcio Brothers withstood some pressure before Nordiques offense took the game away from Lightspeed. All three forward lines scored with tallies by each centerman - Roth (2), Delorey, and DiMartino (a rear appearance on a forward line and rarer still at center).
Next up for the Nordiques will be Fat Tire on Friday, and then show-downs with Red Bull, Nomads, and Ice Paddys. Ice Paddys picked up a loss this weekend, just their second of the season, at the hands of Red Bull. Ice Paddys have three points more than the Nordiques with 5 games left to play before post-season begins. The bigger concern for the 6Nordiques may be both Nomads and Red Bull who are charging hard from 3rd and 4th places down the stretch.
5Nordiques Win Again, 4-2
7 January 2011 On Wednesday, the Nordiques doubled-up Bald Eagles 4-2. After letting up an early goal on an unfortunate deflection off the stick of defenseman Jim Ondo, the Nordiques rebounded to notch a tie with about 39 seconds left in the first period. Both offensively and defensively, the Nordiques cruised in the second, outscoring their opponent 2-0. However, the game wasn't over as the Bald Eagles scored early in the third to tighten it up to 3-2. The Nordiques slammed the door shut with Eric Farrell's backhanded goal off a cross-ice pass. (Game account provided by Brian Fratturo).
The T5Nordiques now have 8 wins and 16 points. With six games remaining, the Nordiques are a lock for one of the top three spots in the tier. The next contest will be a rematch versus Van Team, a talented but underachieving middle-of-the-pack team who were defeated 7-4 by these Nordiques earlier in the season.
6Nordiques drop another to Ice Paddys
2 January 2011 The Nordiques came from behind again. But it was the Ice Paddys who broke a 4-4 3rd period tie to defeat the Nordiques 6-4 tonight in T6 play. The victory solidifies Ice Paddys' hold on 1st place with 5 points now separating them from the 2nd place Nordiques.
Ice Paddys, who were defeated by the Nordiques for the summer championship, have increased their overall skill level and appear to have become the favorite in the division at 8-1. Another way to say it is that Ice Paddys have become an outlier at 8-1. While the remaining teams in the division are relatively balanced, most separated by 5 points, the Ice Paddys are already virtually out of reach. The Nordiques, who defeated unbeaten Anderson Analytics (18-0) to capture the Spring championship, have little choice but to play out the string, qualify for the playoffs, and hope to see Ice Paddys again for a championship rematch.
The Nordiques were somewhat satisfied to hang in and come back on Paddys. Their very full bench had a few difference makers that come in just to play against Nordiques. How nice. But it was a questionable penalty call that put the Nordiques in a short-handed situation that led to the eventual loss. The winning goal was a blue line blast that is not often seen at this level of play. Despite the hard shot and the screen, Fratturo managed to get a piece but not enough to deflect it away from finding the net.
The T6Nordiques will have some time to think about things. Next up will be Lightspeed on Fri Jan 14 and then Fat Tire on Jan 21.
5Nordiques Comeback Again to Win Another Thriller Record Crowd Watches as Nordiques Keep Pace with Barflies and Pub Crawlers
29 December 2010 Another thriller by the hard-to-put-away Nordiques last night as they came from behind in the third to beat Brennan's Red Stripe 6-4 in T5 competition. The Nordiques repeatedly responded to deficits as the team's first four Nordiques goals did no better than tie the game. It wasn't till the final stanza that the Nordiques took a lead at 5-4.
Five Nordiques forwards provided the offense. Justin Matijcio used his speed to score two goals on break aways (one in the second and one in the third period). Shortly after the ref blundered by awarding a clear non-goal to Brennans, brother Tim Matijcio took the center ice face off into the zone and ripped one past Brennan's goalie. Slo-mo replay cameras show Timmy asking the official (politely) whether he saw THAT puck go in. Kevin Unger stung Brennans by forcing a giveaway and scoring a breakaway goal of his own. Big Jim Delorey knocked in a timely goal off a rebound in front. Finally on a 5 on 3 penalty kill, the Nordiques reversed fortune when Bill Farrell connected with Ronnie Kim who tossed a perfect saucer pass onto the blade of Eric Farrell and promptly roofed a winner.
Aside from the victory, the game also had a few interesting side notes. For instance, the holiday week game brought out many Nordiques fans. Family and friends from far and near were equipped with Nordiques placards, banners and signs. The team really appreciated the gestures. It's unfortunate that these fans had to watch the Nordiques get called for penalty after penalty after penalty, including some bench minors. In fact, the ratio of Nordiques-to-Brennan's penalties was said to be 3x1, making the comeback that much more improbable, but just s sweet for the fans and Nordiques players. The non-goal call against the Nordiques lit the fuse but only because the referee was clearly far away from the action and out of position to make that call. It must have been a personal hell in which Fratturo simmered. The game also witnessed Brian let in what might be the longest goal in Nordiques history. To be sure, team captains are going back to review the Gencarelli tapes, A-train let in a number of long distance stinkers in his day too. The puck was shot from outside the far blue line. Hopping and skipping its way down the ice, the puck clipped the top of Fratturo's stick and over it, clearing the goal line with hardly any momentum to spare. Despite these imperfect moments, Brian's resiliency was key and helped him bounce back to shut down Brennans in the last period. Rick Gioia provided some laughs with a hilarious wipe out. The captain was enraged by an on-ice incident before the wreckage occurred and then both enraged and humiliated after the wreck. Both benches were caught laughing at Ricky's rare misfortune.
The Nordiques win leaves Brennan's in fourth place looking up at Barflies (15 points) and Pub Crawlers & Nordiques each with 14 points. The next T5 Nordiques game will take place on Wednesday January 5 versus the 4-4 Bald Eagles. Earlier in the season the Nordiques defeated Bald Eagles by a 7-3 score.
14 Nordiques Ready to Play on Blizzard Night Red Bull Plays Valiently for One Period then Forfeits
28 December 2010 The nor' eastern blizzard had since passed 12 hours earlier. Yet it remained c-c-c-cold and windy, and driving was still treacherous. But the game never waits and is never cancelled for weather. 14 Nordiques answered the call last night. 14 Nordiques showed commitment, showed passion for their team and the game. By comparison, only 6 Red Bull players had the same commitment and passion. Nonetheless, players laced up, the puck dropped and the first period was played. Red Bull played valiantly but surrendered to the reality that a game cannot be played with a goalie and 5 skaters. The game goes into the books as a forfeit win for the Nordiques despite the 3-0 lead at the time.
The Nordiques captains thanked their team mates first, and then showed respect to those Red Bull players for coming out and showing up to play. Some Nordiques used the rest of the ice time to practice and to give goal tender Brian Fratturo some work. Others got an early start at Ice View. The team would like to recognize at least 2 players who spent the last 20 hours in plow trucks and with shovels in hand who despite their exhaustion STILL came out for their team...Rich Gioia and Brian Fratturo. Others made sacrifices as well, and that's a testimony to the team as the boys rally together to make a strong playoff run this March.
The T6Nordiques play first place Ice Paddys (8-1, 16 points) this Sunday Jan 2. Presently, the Nordiques (6-2-1) trail Ice Paddys by 3 points after 9 games. For the latest T5S and T6 standings, click on the Winter 2011 Results tab.
T6Nordiques Defeat Nomads in OT Shootout Brion Nets Winner in 14th Round
23 December 2010 Twice in the same week have the Nordiques battled back from third period deficits to force an overtime shoot out. Twice in the same week have the Nordiques won that shoot out. Tonight Dave Brion was the OT hero, netting the winner to secure his team's three game win streak. By defeating Nomads, the Nordiques have a firm hold of second place in T6 as the first half of the season comes to a close. After eight games, Ice Paddys control the division at 7-1 (14 points) followed by Nordiques at 5-2-1 (11 points) and Nomads at 3-2-3 (9 points). Despite the placement, the Nordiques believe their best hockey is still ahead of them.
The game did not start as the Nordiques had hoped. Nomads controlled play early and kept the Nordiques backing up all night. With little sustained pressure in the offensive zone, it was a matter of time before Nomads controlled the scoreboard as well. Trailing 2-0 after the second, players challenged themselves to win the third period. The first line responded with two Charles Roth goals; one from the corner which sneaked its way between the post and the goalie's backside and the other on a break away. The Nordiques fought hard to win it in regulation and came close but it was not to be. Feeling confident with Brian Fratturo in net, the Nordiques set their mind to finding the hot hands to score in the shoot out.
Fratturo confidently stopped 14 consecutive Nomads shoot out attempts. It was in the 14th round that the Nordiques unleashed their secret weapon. With 13 previous unsuccessful Nordiques shooters offering advice, Dave Brion simply said, in a very cool manner, "thanks boys, but I got this thing that I do and I'm just going to do it". Do it, is what he did. He deeked almost to the point of excess and with the goalie now deep in his net, Brion saw the right side exposed and he found the net. The team exploded with joy for the understated winger, but had to wait another moment for Fratturo to make one more stop on the Nomads next shooter. Fratturo made the final save and the Nordiques celebrated a win on the eve of Christmas eve.
For the Nordiques, this is the second victory of the season versus Nomads. For the Nomads, this is already their third shoot out loss of the season. The Nordiques play Red Bull this Monday Dec 27 to start the second half. This will be the third meeting of the season with Red Bull (2-5). The Nordiques won one of those games (5-2) but lost the other in a 0-0 tie/1-0 shoot out.
T5Nordiques Topple Barflies in OT Some Calling it the Greatest Nordiques Comeback Ever
21 December 2010 T5Nordiques rebounded from a 4-1 deficit last night and won a game that will surely be remembered as one of the great regular season victories in the long, illustrious history of the Nordiques. Eric Farrell's goal late in the second period gave the Nordiques life and Tim Matijcio's break away goal closed the gap to 4-3 in the third. With only seconds remaining in the third and goalie Brian Fratturo at the bench for the extra skater, the Nordiques scrambled and found a way to tie the game and sent it to OT. After 8 shoot out rounds, the Nordiques prevailed with Anit Arora's clinching goal (winning the shoot out 3-2).
By snatching a victory away from the Barflies, the Nordiques record improves to 6-2, including 2 victories over Barflies against one loss. The top of the T5S standing looks like this (see Winter 2011 Results tab to the left side of this page):
-By virtue of the OT/loss point earned last night and with 9 games played, the Barflies are atop the standings with 13 points. -With the win last night, the Nordiques have 12 points but with 8 games played, one less than Barflies. The Nordiques play Brennan's (currently 4th place at 4-2) next Tuesday Dec 28. -The Pub Crawlers have 12 points as well but with 7 games played. Pub Crawlers recently lost their first game of the season to Van Team and are scheduled for a rematch against Van Team Thurs Dec 23.
The victory last night was an thrilling. But perhaps it was a little sweeter given it came against Barflies and happened during the week of Christmas Eve. To commemorate the victory, Nordiques fans quickly penned this ode.
'Twas the night of a hockey game, and all through the rink, the Barflies were winning, but wait - don't you blink. Ahead 4 - 1 without a care in the world, The Nordiques never quit, you're the clam, we're the pearl.
The Barflies were snug, with their lead in hand, they had no clue that Nordiques always have a plan, with Eric scoring, late in the second, it's a 2-goal game now, shush, don't even mention.
When in front of our net there sprang such a clatter to start the third period, but it didn't even matter. A save after another save, there was in flash, we're a 3rd period team boys, there's no doubt about that!
Tim on a breakaway, then 4 -3 was the score, visions of losing we had no more. With solid defense and hustle, we kept it a tight game, then proved we're the best, when the opportunity came!
With our goalie pulled, extremely late in third, we tied it up, with a play so absurd.
Now onto the shootout, just so happy we tied, we'd take the 1 point, but hell...let's try!!
8 rounds of breakaways, we scored 3 to their 2, Anit got the clincher and the hockey game was through!
One of the greatest comebacks in Nordiques history, especially because it caused the Barflies such misery!
The team played great and the goalie stayed strong, and we closed the bar at two in the MORN!!!!
T6Nordiques power past Fat Tire 7-3
14 December 2010 T6Nordiques put together back to back wins with a 7-3 victory over Fat Tire last night. The win gives the team 9 points, good for second place after 7 games. The Nordiques out-worked Fat Tire in each of the first two periods with plenty of first and second line speed. The defense did a great job of controlling the puck in the D-zone and putting shot on net to create chances in the O-zone. Feeling comfortable with a 3-0 lead going into the 3rd period was a mistake as Fat Tire quickly put up 2 goals in the first minute. The party was over for Fat Tire right then though. The Nordiques answered back in a big way by scoring four more goals and controlling the puck till the final buzzer.
There are plenty of names to mention in this game. First off, the Roth/Jackimsky/Roth line was flying. Their speed created scoring chances but more importantly kept the flow of the game in the Nordiques favor. The majority of the scoring, 6 goals, was provided by the Delorey/Masterson/Nash line. Big Jim had a big night with 4 goals and Breck added two more. While we don't track such things formally, Tim Nash's 5 assists is probably a modern day Nordiques record and certainly a tribute to the hard work he did in the corners all night using great hands to get the puck into the red zone.
Another Nordiques record, we believe, was achieved by the Comesana/McCully/Schwartz line. Skating together the entire game, we think this could be the most aged line to play together in Nordiques history, distinguished by a combined age of 157 years. Make no mistake about it though, these boys finished strong and shut down Fat Tire scorers when the game was still close. This line is now enshrined forever with other Nordiques on the Best of page. Please refer to the "Best of" tab at the left side of this page to read about other funny moments or best ofs.
Headlining the defense was Kent Holden who score a nice goal on a slapper from the point. Ken was paired with Tyler Schinto who made some big plays in the game. Peter DiMartino and Matt Simon applied much pressure from the point, controlling the puck, keeping it in the zone, and putting several shots on net. Stalwart defenseman Paul Modugno was in his usual top form and provided stewardship to alternate Steve Ulbrich who made his Nordiques debut and comes back to the competitive ice after 7 years away from the game.
Brian Fratturo played goal and had two periods to catch up on his paperwork. Brian stayed sharp by handling the puck often enough to keep the game interesting. Brian wore pajamas to the Ice View press room afterwards.
The T6 Nordiques will have 10 days off before playing Nomads on Thur Dec 23. In the first game of the winter season, Nordiques defeated Nomads 4-1. And then a quick turnaround follows as the Nordiques will face off against Red Bull on Monday Dec 27.
T5Nordiques shut down by Barflies
10 December 2010 The T5Nordiques sustained a tough loss on Friday night (December 10) at STR at the hands of Barflies by a 4-0 score. Barflies did a very good job of limiting Nordiques shot on goal. Shots often came from the outside and from bad angles and many missed the net. As a result, there were few rebound opportunities for Nordiques wingers to try to capitalize on. The game was relatively close throughout however, and trailing by just 2 goals going into the 3rd period the Nordiques were always in the game.
T5Nordiques carry a 5-2 record into next Monday's rematch with Barflies (December 20). In fact, this will already be the third meeting of these 2 teams in eight games, having split the first two. Barflies share a second place tie with the Nordiques, each with the same 5-2 record.
7 December 2010 Last night the T6Nordiques had fun and got back to their winning ways. A strong show of support (18 players) made for a crowded bench but plenty of energy. Having lost two straight games, the last of which was to the same Lightspeed team, it was crucial for the Nordiques to rebound with a strong effort. The effort was there and the Nordiques prevail relatively easily 5-1. With the win the T6Nordiques picked up some ground and ascend to a second place tie (with Nomads) at 7 points after 6 games.
The evening started off with a surprise appearance by George "Paco" Comesana. A senior member of the Nordiques, George, until last night, hadn't suited up for a game in nearly a year. This was exactly what the team needed. Paco's personality, fire, and rubber chicken had been sorely missed this season and really provided a much-needed lift. He never shut up and we never stopped laughing. The high-spirit was brought to the ice and everyone just relaxed and had fun. The score was 3-0 after 1 and 4-0 after 2 periods. Congrats to Kevin McCully on his first Nordiques goal and to Charlie Roth for scoring on his birthday. Dr. Schwartz also hit the score sheet with a gritty effort while 2 very pretty goals came from blueliners Tim Nash (powerplay) and Breck Masterson.
The only blemish preventing a well-deserved shut out for the Nordiques and goal tender Brian Fratturo was a rare mishandle of the puck in the third period. Brian had been handling the puck extensively all night and effectively performed as a third defenseman. He moved the puck with Brodeur-like accuracy and may have been credited with an assist on a goal. However, Brodeur turned into Bro-turo and he flubbed one. His pocket was picked clean for the lone goal against. The bench roared with laughter...and Brian was given the game chicken.
Don't forget it boys..."le gagnant vient de l'amusement"
The T6Nordiques take the ice again next Monday December 13 for its first contest of the season with a vastly improved Fat Tire squad. Fat Tire is 3-3 and trail the Nordiques in the standings by one point.
T5Nordiques Nip Parts 2-1
6 December 2010 Last week the T5Nordiques outlasted Parts Unknown by a score of 2-1. The win raises its T5S record to 5-1 while Parts drops to 0-6. The Nordiques have won three consecutive games since their only loss of the season to Pub Crawlers (6-0), the only team ahead in the standing through 6 games.
By all accounts, the game should not have been close at all. However, in order to ensure a balanced contest, the officials saw fit to keep the Nordiques at a manpower disadvantage as much as possible. It was reported that the Nordiques skated short-handed (3 on 5, 3 on 4, and 4 on 5) for approximately half the game. Defensively, the team rose to the challemge. Brian Fratturo had a solid game in goal seeing a number of odd-man rushes.
The Nordiques hold a one game advantage over T5Bar Flies (4-2). These two teams will face each other for the second time of the season this Friday December 10. The Nordiques won a close contest by 5-3 score in the first match up with Bar Flies.
T5Nordiques beat Trashers; T6Nordiques Lose
29 November 2010 Last week the T5Nordiques got back on track with a 5-3 win over Trashers, who remain winless. The victory raises the T5Nordiques record to 4-1 and the team temporarily holds a first place tie with Pub Crawlers (4-0) who also have 8 points. T5Nordiques play Wednesday Dec 1 against Parts Unknown, another winless team.
The T6Nordiques played Saturday and were soundly beaten by Lightspeed 8-5. The loss drops the T6Nordiques below .500 at 2 wins/3 losses (5 points) and into a 4th place ties with Nomads. It's been a long time since Lightspeed defeated Nordiques who were out-manned and mostly out-hustled. Lightspeed skated with speed through the neutral zone and were difficult to contain. The T6Nordiques have a shot at redemption next week with a Monday evening rematch.
Nordiques Relinquish First Place(s)
18 November 2010 On Thursday the T5Nordiques lost their first game of the season 8-5 to Pub Crawlers. The loss puts Pub Crawlers alone at the top of the T5S standings at 4-0 while dropping the Nordiques into a second place tie with Brennan's at 3-1. The Nordiques face winless teams in their next two games. On Tuesday Nov 23 the Nordiques will play Trashers (0-4) and on Wednesday Dec 1 they will play Parts Unknown (0-4). The Nordiques look to start another winning streak at the expense of these weaker teams.
19 November 2010 On Friday, an out-manned T6Nordiques team sustained a fairly sound beating at the hands of Ice Paddys and relinquished first place to them. It was the Ice Paddys whom the Nordiques defeated for the summer 2010 championship in a 3-game battle. The victory gives the Ice Paddys sole possession of first place in the T6 standings at 3-1, while the loss drops the Nordiques into a second place tie with Nomads just one point out of first place. The T6 Nordiques next 2 games will be played against Lightspeed, currently tied for third place, one point behind.
5Nordiques Smash Van Team 7-4; Roll to 3-0
10 November 2010 Fans on hand to watch the 5Nordiques team last night were very impressed by the skill level and speed on display. Both teams played at a high level in fact. The Nordiques trailed Van Team 0-1 and 1-2 in the first period and fought back to tie the contest each time. Towards the end of that period the Nordiques began to force the play. Great defensive play and goal tending led to fast break outs punctuated by accurate passing. The period ended with the Nordiques on top 3-2. For the most part the Nordiques out skilled a very skilled opponent for the rest of the game.
Last night's 7-4 win boosted the winner's record to 3-0 while dropping Van Team to 1-2. The 5Nordiques team will be very tough to beat this season. However, an early season showdown next week (November 18) against perennial bad guys Pub Crawlers, the only other undefeated team at 3-0, could determine which team is the class of the division.
6Nordiques Drop Shootout in Scoreless Draw
10 November 2010 You don't see it often, but in the second game of last night's Nordiques double-header, the 6Nordiques and Red Bull skated to a 0-0 tie. Naturally, both teams were responsible with the puck and played strong defensive games. As well, goal tending at both ends was terrific. At the end of regulation play, the teams went to a 5-man shoot out to determine a winner. Red Bull put one past Brian Fratturo while Nordiques shooters came up empty.
The Nordiques throughout the game had little difficulty penetrating the offensive zone and putting shots on net. Several blue line shots had potential but nothing got past the Red Bull net minder. Meanwhile Nordiques Fratturo made a few difficult saves but all else was routine.
The tie (overtime loss) gives the 6Nordiques a 2-1 record but with a crucial extra overtime point which puts them alone atop the standings with 5 points (out of a possible 6 points) after 3 games. Ice Paddys and Nomads are also 2-1 and are tied for second with 4 points each.
6Nordiques Down Red Bull 5-2
4 November 2010 Late last night the T6 Nordiques downed some Red Bull by defeating the T6 newcomer 5-2. The Nordiques AHL2 winter hockey seasons are off to a fine start with both T5 and T6 teams atop their respective standings at 2-0. It was a rare appearance for the Nordiques blue/away sweaters and the team had a last minute scramble to accommodate the home team wearing white. This surprise was particularly agitating for some of the new players on the team who have yet to obtain the coveted and hard to find Nordiques blue sweater. Despite that hiccup, the rest of the evening went more-or-less smoothly.
However, it was another inauspicious start last night for the new look Nordiques. The team began the game bumpy and unrefined--coincident with the hideous ice quality. Red Bull scored the first goal of the game when a puck trickled through Fratturo's pads and sat in the crease as the defense failed to protect. With the score tied 2-2 at the end of the second period, the momentum had clearly shifted in favor of the Nordiques who at this point were much fresher and faster than their out-manned opponents. The Nordiques dominated the last period by moving the puck and the legs quickly around the offensive zone while forechecking impressively too. Red Bull could have used a few Red Bulls right about then because they were quite obviously gassed and could no longer defend. The Nordiques pumped in 3 unanswered goals to finish the contest.
The first line (Roth/Roth/Jackimsky) accounted for 2 goals and the second line (Delorey/Nash/McCulley) also scored 2. Newest Nordiques defenseman Matt Simon scored a key goal, tying the game at 2 apiece. The third line (Vranos/Schwartz/Pevsner) worked hard and had several scoring chances throughout the final two periods. Helping out Fratturo in the D-zone were Modugno/Holden, DiMartino/Simon, and Gioia/Bruno. The Nordiques welcomed back Charles Pevsner last night after a two-season hiatus. Pevsner, who scored the winning goal to clinch the winter 2009 Nordiques championship commented on tonight's game "Nous avons travaillé plus longtemps et plus fort que nos adversaires ce soir".
The November and December schedules are rife with late game times and the challenges will be considerable. Nordiques will be out in force next Tuesday Nov 9 when the T5 and T6 squads play a rare back-to-back contest at STR starting at 9pm (vs Van Team) and then 10:30pm (a rematch with Red Bull). Alt-captian DiMartino advised players not to focus on game start times..."la passion est intemporel".
5Nordiques Defeat Barflies 5-3
27 October 2010 The Nordiques T5 team out-hustled Bar Flies on Monday night to take a 5-3 win and extend their winter season record to 2-0.
Despite the 5 goals scored, the Nordiques were fortunate to have Brian Fratturo playing one of his best games in goal for the T5 team. Bar Flies had a number of fast skaters who took the puck coast to coast, and nearly everyone on the team had hard shots. Brian effectively used poke-checks close-in and made a number of spry reaction saves on quick shots and rebound attempts. Brian was in the zone, as were the defensive pairings of Cook/Modugno and Bruno/Gioia, shouldering the load with three 3 defensemen out of action. Playing forward, Tim Matijcio provided big-time support in the D-zone by stepping in front of some high-powered point shots.
Offensively, the team welcomed Anit Arora to the T5 roster and Anit returned the favor by scoring the game's first goal as he drove the net to deflect a Steve Hepensteil shot. In fact, the Nordiques jumped out to a surprising 3-0 lead following goals by Mike Robinson and Eric Farrell while crediting assists to Phil Rincand and Bill Farrell, respectively. Bar Flies battled back and trailed by one goal. With the score at 4-3 the Nordiques finished off with an empty netter.
"The Nordiques were quick to the puck all night", said captain Rich Gioia when asked what the key was to the victory. "That sort of hustle shows this team's desire and we intend to bring it to each game this season", said former captain Paul Modugno, adding "une passionnante et gratifiante gagner".
Nordiques Win Winter Debut Games
23 October 2010 Nordiques hockey teams started the winter season with a pair of wins this week. On Tuesday the 5Nordiques shut down the Bald Eagles 7-3. After trailing early the team applied all kinds of pressure in the O-zone and began to pull away in the second period. The 3rd period saw the Nordiques outscored their opponents 3-0. The Bald Eagles were victimized by a short bench while the Nordiques had numbers. In addition, the Nordiques were much stronger in goal.
As was often the case last season, this season's new-look 6Nordiques were the comeback kids again last night scoring a 4-1 win. The slow start appeared to be caused by the integration of new players and line personnel adjustments. More specifically , the main difficulty for the team was a matter of breaking out of their defensive zone cleanly. Nomads defensemen effectively pressured Nordiques forwards along the boards all night. As a result, the Nordiques were under constant pressure in the D-zone. Fortunately Brian Fratturo limited the deficit to just one goal which held up till late in the second when Jim Cook blistered a one-timer from high in the right circle off a nice pass from fellow defenseman Paul Modugno. This was both the first goal of the season for the Nordiques as well as the team's first power-play goal.
The defense and goaltending for the Nordiques remained strong all night. Tied at 1-1 in the third, it wasn't long till Rich Gioia sprung Tim Nash on a break away. Tim made some great moves as he bore down on the Nomad netminder. Tim's last move was to his left, lifting a backhander over the outstretched goalie. Similarly, about 5 minutes later, Breck Masterson took a pass off the boards and outraced pinching defensement to make the score 3-1. The Nomads charged back franticly late in the third. But Tyler Schinto doused their hopes as he scored the 4th Nordiques goal in the traditional Nordiques fashion, by working hard down low and knocking in a loose puck.
The teams are anxious to get back to the ice. The 5Nordiques will play a tough contest on Monday October 25 against the Barflies. The 6Nordiques are awaiting notification of their next scheduled game having their Halloween night contest vs Redbull cancelled. There have been multiple reports that in recent Halloween games ghosts from long-ago Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs Stanley Cup winning teams (very long ago in fact) can be seen battling beneath the ice surface trying to get out. Also reported have been incidents of headless Zamboni drivers spraying the ice with LaBatts. What a waste!
Nordiques Begin Winter Season Oct 19, 22
18 October 2010 Nordiques hockey returns this week at STR. The organization again will enter two teams in separate tiers (T5S and T6). T5S begins Tuesday October 19 and T6 begins Friday October 22. Team rosters are finalized and will be reported here next week.
After having much success in T6, recently (Spring and Summer 2010 championships) the team is focused on bringing home the T5S winter crown having come within one game of that achievement in the spring. Competition in T5S will be difficult but the Nordiques T5S team is stacked with talent and experience. Meanwhile the T6 team will be bringing back several tested veterans and have recruited some new players as well. The T6 team will be defending its spring and summer championships while competing to add an unprecedented third consecutive title.
Stay tuned right here at www.nordiques.us for updated rosters, game summaries and stats, and league standings.
Good luck Nordiques in the Winter 2011 AHL2 season!!
"nos bras meutris vous tendent le flambeau, a vous toujours de la porter bien haut..."