Kitchener, ON - Coming off their tournament 4-0 record, Team ALLIANCE faced their toughest battle yet in the final of the 2016 OHL Gold Cup against Team GTHL Blue who also entered into the game with a 4-0 record.
Team GTHL Blue had a three-goal lead after two periods and cruised the rest of the way en route to a 6-1 win over Team ALLIANCE.
Team GTHL Blue was led by goalie Hunter Jones, who finished with 29 saves while allowing one goal. The solid play of Jones will be reflected in his goals against average, which pre-game was 2.33.
Team ALLIANCE's eight penalties came back to haunt them, as Team ALLIANCE gave up four goals while on the penalty kill.
Team GTHL Blue put up an impenetrable defensive front on the penalty kill, and did not allow Team ALLIANCE to score on any of its eight power plays. Team GTHL Blue kept Team ALLIANCE's goalie busy throughout the game, as Nathan Torchia made 38 saves on 44 shots. Team GTHL Blue's penalty killing units received substantial work throughout the game as Team GTHL Blue finished with 18 penalty minutes.
Team GTHL Blue was helped by Danil Antropov, who had one goal. Antropov scored on the power play 19:49 into the first period to make the score 2-0 Team GTHL Blue. Team GTHL Blue had gained a power play chance when Joel Mazzilli was whistled for cross checking. Tyler Tucker provided the assist. Team GTHL Blue also got points from Akil Thomas, who also finished with two goals and one assist to lead the team in points. Others who scored for Team GTHL Blue included Curtis Douglas, Teth Burles, and Jackson Alexeev, who scored one goal each. More assists for Team GTHL Blue came via Riley Damiani, who had two and Ryan Merkley, Kevin Bahl, and Emmett Gordon, who contributed one each.
Team ALLIANCE could not produce up to its normal offensive output. Team ALLIANCE puts an average of 3.8 pucks into the net per game. Team ALLIANCE could not stay out of the penalty box, as the team accrued 16 minutes in penalties during the game.
Team ALLIANCE was led by Brady Hinz, who scored the team's only goal. Hinz scored short handed 2:08 into the second period to make the score 2-1 Team GTHL Blue. Team ALLIANCE was on a disadvantage when Owen Gilhula went off the ice for high sticking. Luke Bignell picked up the assist.
Congratulations to Team GTHL Blue on their awesome tournament run and 5-0 record!
Although, the outcome of the final game was not the original goal for Team ALLIANCE, the effort throughout the event was all that could be asked of them. Congratulations to Team ALLIANCE for capturing silver at the 2016 OHL Gold Cup! Your character and heart shone through and we are proud of you!