“It wasn’t a good night. We could have done better,” was how Bishop Foley Unified head coach Dave Williamson summed up Saturday night’s 6-1 loss to Riverview Gabriel Richard.
The Pioneers were relentless in their attack on the Warrior net. Bishop Foley goalie Alex Day faced 49 Pioneer shots throughout the game, to just 16 shots on Pioneers goalie Christian Spangler.
The Warriors' biggest problem was caused by an aggressive forecheck by the Pioneers and by unforced turnovers that the Warriors made.
“Gabriel Richard has a few players that like to forecheck and forecheck hard,” Williamson said. “Anytime we got the puck, (our players) were making quicker decisions and they were the wrong decisions. They got in our players heads.
“Defensemen and forwards had to get rid of the puck quicker, make a pass they’re uncomfortable with, that’s what happened tonight. (Gabriel Richard) got in our comfort zone and we made unforced turnovers,” Williams concluded.
The Pioneers scored three goals in the first period, including a short handed tally late in the period.
The Warriors took the first penalty in the second period, a minor called at 6:26. Less than 30 seconds later, the Warriors Austin Lukaschewski stripped a Pioneers player of the puck at center ice, and used his speed to break in on the Pioneers net.
Lukaschewski had a Pioneers defenseman back checking him on the play, and was forced off to the right side of the Pioneer net. Lukaschewski turned at the goal line, snapped a shot at the Pioneer net that hit Spangler in the back and bounced into the net.
The goal tightened the score to 3-1 for the Pioneers. It also ended a multi-game scoring draught for the Warriors.
“Lukachewski looked like Zetterberg or Datsyuk on that one,” said Williamson. “He scored from the goal line, just threw it at net, hit the goalie and it went in.”
The Pioneers remained on the power-play after the Lukaschewski goal, and 12 seconds later they capitalized with the man advantage netting their fourth goal of the night.
The second period ended with the Pioneers up 4-1.
The Pioneers added two additional goals in the third period to make the final score 6-1.
Both teams scored a goal while short-handed. The Pioneers scored one power-play goal out of its two chances. The Warriors had three power-play opportunities, but could not take advantage of the opportunities.