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John Ames (left) and the Richard Pioneers handed Christopher Sukel and the Cabrini Monarchs an 8-1 defeat Thursday night. Photo by Frank Wladyslawski

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HOCKEY: Richard crushes Cabrini in local Catholic League battle (PHOTO/TOUT VIDEO)

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Led by a huge night from both John Ames and Michael Hodgson, Richard skated to an easy 8-1 victory Thursday against visiting Cabrini.

Ames scored four goals for the Pioneers (9-2-1) and Hodgson netted three in what was a matchup between the area’s two Catholic High School League teams.

Helped by the pair’s dominant play, Richard was able to take control early against the Monarchs (1-10) and never looked back.

Just 23 seconds into the game, Hodgson sped into the opposing zone and quickly scored to give his team a 1-0 lead. Assists on his goal went to Ames and Eric Blevins.

About three minutes later, Brandon Damron and Ames skated into the Cabrini end. Damron passed to Ames in front of the net and he promptly flipped it past goaltender Brett Kates to make it a 2-0 game, with Hodgson also earning an assist.

To start the season, Ames was playing as a defenseman, but Richard Coach Rick DeSana recently opted to move the sophomore to a forward spot, putting him together with Damron and Hodgson.

“That line is very good offensively, they move the puck well and they share the puck well,” DeSana said.

For the rest of the first period and much of the second, the Pioneers continued to apply pressure, but couldn’t get on the board again. During that stretch, the Monarchs tightened up defensively and Kates was strong in the net, coming up with some big stops along the way.

However, just as the Monarchs had their chance on a power play, Hodgson struck again.

Within the first few seconds of the Cabrini man-advantage, Hodgson got the puck, skated in behind the Monarchs’ net and scored shorthanded on a wraparound at the 12:48 mark. Earning an assist on his goal was Jon Rhind.

Inside the final two minutes of the second period, the hosts grabbed a commanding 5-0 lead and all but put the game out of reach.

The first goal was from Hodgson, who completed his hat trick and scored his 21st of the season at the 15:11 mark. Just 46 seconds later, Ames scored his second goal of the night. Assists on Hodgson’s goal went to Damron and Tyler Rinney, and on Ames’ goal Rhind and John Louria earned assists.

To start the final period, Ames picked up right where he left off.

Just 21 seconds in, he banged home a rebound to give his squad a 6-0 lead and then one minute later made it a seven-goal advantage with his fourth of the night. Hodgson picked up an assist on both goals, while Damron and John Tocco each earned one.

“It felt good to score,” Ames said. “We played pretty good. We got the puck in the net, got some rebound goals. It felt great to get back to the fundamentals that we started with this season.”

Cabrini got its lone goal of the night about five minutes into the third period, as Corey Dooley was able to find the back of the Richard net, assisted by Anthony Killam and Jacob Mackie.

Dooley’s goal ultimately helped the shorthanded Monarchs, who only had 11 total skaters Thursday, avoid the eight-goal mercy against a tough Richard team.

“We’ve got a short bench, they’ve got a good club,” said Monarchs Coach Bill Alvis. “We kept working, battling as hard as we could to make sure they didn’t mercy us.”

To cap the scoring for the evening, the Pioneers’ Sage Becraft netted a goal with about three minutes left and made it an 8-1 game. Blevins picked up the lone assist on Becraft’s goal.

Next up for Richard is the Southeastern Hockey League Showcase Friday night at the Southgate Civic Center. The Pioneers will open the showcase with a 5:30 p.m. game on Rink A against Flat Rock-Airport.

Cabrini was scheduled to take part in the showcase, as well, but its game with Monroe on Friday night has been canceled. The Monarchs will be in action again Wednesday and will welcome in Bishop Foley that night for a CHSL battle.

Last Updated: 1/10/2014 3:51:05 PM EST