TORONTO - The Parkdale Hockey Lads made good on a New Year's resolution this past Saturday and breathed new, fiery life into a bitter old rivalry in the process. In what was clearly the team's most significant victory of the inaugural UUHA season thus far, the Lads edged the Humiliation by a razor-thin margin of 5-4, at one point coming back from a two-goal deficit to pull off what some considered to be a veritable miracle on ice.
Lads forward Mike Frolick (later named the game's 1st Star) opened the scoring less than two minutes in, converting a pass from teammate Ryan Kalinka. (Kalinka, incidentally, was making his season debut as his work schedule has prevented him from playing in previous Lads games.) The familiar one-two punch of Humiliation points producers Mike Thompson and Paul Morris answered back in short order, however, conspiring with Eric Partington to erase the Lads lead and better it by a goal. The Humiliation's Chara-like Paul Simmons added another marker midway through the 2nd period to put the orange side up by a pair. That lead was cut by one thanks to a hard-hatted effort by Lads call-up David Egli - his first of two goals on the night. Partington and Joe Cook then teamed up to restore the two-goal lead before the horn sounded to end the frame.
For the Lads, the 3rd period was all about determination and shots as the last-place team bettered some previous full-game totals with an astounding 15 attempts at the net in the final frame alone. Three of those attempts were converted as Hans Zammit, Egli and Nick Hehn joined the lamp-lighting ranks. Egli's second tally was a goal-mouth redirection of a Hehn point shot, initially set up and kept on-side by Yawd Sylvester. Hehn's goal, meanwhile, stood up as the game winner as the Lads went into defensive lock-down mode for the remaining three-and-a-half minutes in order to secure the precious two points up for grabs.
Hehn, along with the Orange Tide's Partington, were fingered as the game's two other Stars, 1st and 2nd respectively. Although the two teams are now done their three-game season series (which the Humiliation got the better of), Saturday's game sets the stage for a potential March playoff match-up.
In other Saturday night UUHA action, the Jokers successfully avenged an earlier lopsided loss to the Bellwoods Blackhawks, getting the better of the well-stocked exhibition squad by a score of 3-2. Jokers rookie Hunter Collins, captain Ted Bisaillion and speedster Gary Rideout Jr. all managed multiple points, while Steve Levine and Craig Hughson's numbers showed up in the assist column as well. Scoring for the Blackhawks side was handled by Chris Thompson and Paul Aucoin, while Dan Skeaff contributed a helper to the penalty-free contest.