The Buffalo Jr. Sabres picked up a pair of wins during the 2016 Ontario Junior Hockey League’s Governors’ Showcase at HARBORCENTER in downtown Buffalo, NY.
Buffalo opened their Showcase on Monday, September 26 with an 8:30 pm puck drop against the Aurora Tigers. This was the first and only meeting of the season between the two teams, and the Jr. Sabres came out on top, edging Aurora by a score of 3-2.
The Tigers came out with a jump, scoring just 20 seconds into the game to take an early 1-0 lead. Buffalo took a little time to find their legs, but tied it up on a power play goal by Nick Alfieri with under five to play in the opening frame. Alfieri then gave the Jr. Sabres a 2-1 lead in the second period – a feat that was soon met by Aurora’s own tying goal.
Michael Faliero came in clutch to give Buffalo the lead once again – and for all – with his goal at 8:07 of the third period, and the Jr. Sabres came out with the victory. Buffalo was 1-5 on the power play.
Tucker Weppner had 30 saves in net in the victory.
The Jr. Sabres returned to the ice on Wednesday, September 28 for a 4:30 pm matchup with the Newmarket Hurricanes. Once again, this was the first & only meeting of the season between the two teams.
This time around, things were a little different for Buffalo, who, despite playing at their home rink, were slated as the road team. Whether this actually made any difference to the team was uncertain — but the Jr. Sabres walked away with a decisive 6-0 victory.
After a scoreless first period, Buffalo’s Cameron Radziwon notched his sixth goal of the season just 51 seconds into the middle frame to give the Jr. Sabres a 1-0 lead. He was soon followed by Michael Faliero and Adam Tretowicz, who each scored within a span of 5:27 to put Buffalo up 3-0.
The trio would each add a goal in the third period to double Buffalo’s lead, and in the end, the Jr. Sabres skated off with the 6-0 win.
It was a heavily penalized game, with the teams combining for 59 penalty minutes, not including a match penalty and game misconduct that were also part of the rough night.
Radziwon put up a four-point night, adding a pair of assists on top of his two goals, while Christina DiFelice notched a trio of assists.
Buffalo’s win marked the lone shutout of the 22 games in the Governors’ Showcase; it also marked the first OJHL shutout of Alex Camarre’s career, as he stopped all 27 shots faced.
With the two wins at the Showcase, the Jr. Sabres are now 5-3-0-0 on the season, good for second place in the West Division. They sit just two points behind Georgetown.
Faliero and DiFelice now lead the Jr. Sabres with 11 points each, while Radziwon has nine points in seven games.
Next up, the Jr. Sabres host the North York Rangers at HARBORCENTER on Friday, September 30.