By Fred Wallace
OMHA Novice " A " Championship
Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".
Over the course of the hockey season, I see the odd Minor Hockey game.
Last weekend I got to see back-to-back games in the Ontario Minor Hockey Association Novice " A " Championship as the Owen Sound Quik Lube Attack hosted the North Durham Warriors in the opening 2 games of their championship series.
In Game 1 on Saturday afternoon saw Quik Lube prevail by a tiny margin, winning 4-3.
The following day in Game 2, less than 24 hours later, Quik Lube broke open another tight 1 goal game with 7 consecutive goals on their way to what turned out to be a lopsided victory.
The difference between Game 1 & 2 ? .......Two factors in my view.
First, we're dealing with a very young age group and for North Durham 2 days away from home, a LONG way away from home if you're 8, combined with the high level of championship excitement and then the emotional dump from being in two very tight games that they just couldn't catch up on scoreboard in, drained them.
I'm not prepared to say the same scenario won't be encountered by Owen Sound next weekend at Port Perry for Game 3, and if needed, Game 4.
The other factor that was clearly in Owen Sound's favor in both the one goal game and the blowout was skating.
Don't get me wrong, the Warriors can play at high pace for this age bracket, but if you had to pick out the 5 best skaters, and in essence players, in the opening two games they would mostly, if not entirely, be from Owen Sound which is a tribute to the Owen Sound Minor Hockey Group and the various skating programs that are available for youngsters.
Good Luck to the Quik Lube Attack this weekend, skate hard and do your best not to let the excitement get the best of you.
I'm Fred Wallace