Caribous Dig Deep For Win

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Updated: November 16, 2014
Jason Churchill Clarenville Caribous | Newfoundland Hockey Talk

The Clarenville Caribous faced enormous odds in Sunday’s action against the Gander Flyers but showed tremendous heart and demonstrated why they are one of the most successful teams in the league.

The Caribous headed into play with a short bench and without a backup goaltender.  Injuries to Roach and Denny meant that the Caribous were down two of their top defensemen.  As the game progressed both Victor and O’Brien were ejected with game misconducts meaning that the Caribous had 12 players plus a goalie to battle the Gander Flyers.

The Flyers jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first period on a goal by Firlotte.  The Caribous responded to make it 1-1 when Oake scored to even things up.  The Flyers went ahead 2-1 on a goal by Wilkins.  Things then went bad for the Caribous when Victor was assessed a 5 minute major for charging and was ejected from the game.  The Flyers took a 2-1 lead into the dressing room after 1 period of play.

In the second period, Quinn from the Flyers scored to make it 3-1 but Delaney quickly responded to make the score 3-2 Flyers.  After pulling even 3-3 with the the Gander Flyers found themselves in their own bit of penalty trouble and the Caribous pulled ahead by a single goal, when Sweetland scored.  Dalton responded for the Flyers to even the score at 4-4 after two periods of play.

Even though they were short benched and showing signs of fatigue, the Clarenville Caribous showed why they are champions.  Crann scored to make it 5-4 for the Caribous and Delaney extended the lead to 6-4.  The Flyers kept coming and pressed the tiring Caribous to draw within a single goal when Escott made it 6-5 Caribous.  O’Keefe tied the game at 6, forcing the teams to head into a shoot-out.

The Caribous salvaged the win, taking the game in the shoot-out and putting an exclamation mark on why this team is a force to be reckoned with in the Central West Newfoundland Senior Hockey League.

They now sit in top stop in the league standings with 9 points, just a single point ahead of the second place Cataracts and 3 points ahead of the Corner Brook Royals.  The Flyers occupy the basement with just 3 points.

Hats off to the Clarenville Caribous, a much deserved victory in spite of everything.

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