Phantoms slaughter weekend games
And rack up more penalty points
The Bracebridge Phantoms hammered both the Bobcaygeon Bucks and the Lefroy Wave this weekend despite spending much of the time in the penalty box.
On Saturday the Phantoms took on the Bobcaygeon Bucks in an away game, smothering them 9-2. On Sunday they demolished Lefroy Wave in a home game 6-1.
Together, all teams accumulated 142 penalty minutes.
The Phantoms announced last week that head coach Anthony Gambacorta and assistant coach Nico Figliano were let go because of the number of penalty minutes in the games. Even though Bracebridge currently sits third in the Greater Metro Hockey League, according to Phantoms owner Tim Dickieson, the Phantoms were gaining a reputation for rough play.
“I noticed the team was becoming a little undisciplined in regards to penalties. We have a lot of talent, but what was happening was we were getting a lot of penalties in the third period and getting scored on,” Dickieson said.
Following Sunday’s game, the Phantoms website said: “The team has really come together under the new coaching staff and have played well disciplined, allowing only three goals against in two games and outscoring their opponents 15 to 3.”
However, both games still saw a high number of players sitting in the penalty box for fighting, high-sticking, roughing, misconduct and a number of other offences.
When the two coaches left, the team had garnered 364 minutes in penalties. During the new coaches’ first games over the weekend, the team added another 65 penalty minutes to their stats.
“I think it’s just standard in general,” Dickieson said. “This league doesn’t put up with a lot when it comes to officiating.”
He said the league has stiff standards when it comes to things like hooking, holding, interference, unneccsary roughness, head shots and hitting from behind.
“I think until the players get it through their heads, that you’re going to see a lot of penalties until the whole league becomes more disciplined,” he said.
Cody Burtch, one of the top overall scorers for the Phantoms and also one of the players who spends the most time in the penalty box, served 10-minute penalties in both games for misconduct, while also scoring two goals and two assists.
Matthew Dickieson served 10 minutes for misconduct during the game against Lefroy, also assisting on a goal.
The Phantoms weren’t alone in their aggressiveness.
During their first game they received 31 penalty minutes while Bobcaygeon received 46 minutes, including three penalties for misconduct and one game ejection in the third period.
In the Phantoms game against Lefroy, the team received 34 penalty minutes while Lefroy received 31 minutes, including a 10-minute misconduct penalty in the second period.
The double win took place after the Phantoms traded defenceman Michael Gambacorta for South Muskoka Shield’s Marks Olesko.
“Mark will add leadership, strength and experience to the Phantoms blue-line,” the website said.
Olesko assisted in his first goal for the Phantoms in the first period of Saturday’s game.