Sunday night, before a home crowd of 435, the Blenheim Blades, for the second time in six days, defeated the PJHL Stobbs Division leading Essex ’73s – this time by a 4-1 score.
Tuesday the Blades had beaten Essex 2-1 in Essex. That defeat was just the second in regulation time for Essex, who had also lost twice in overtime.
The win was Blenheim’s fifth in a row giving them 21 on the year with five games left to play. The Blades are tied for third place with 46 points with the Wheatley Sharks, who edged the Amherstburg Admirals Sunday by a 6-4 score.
The Sharks have played three less games than the Blades.
The win for Blenheim keeps them nine points ahead of the fifth-place Mooretown Flags, who have played four fewer games than the Blades.
Connor Wright, who scored the game winner in Essex Tuesday, opened the scoring for the Blades with his eighth goal of the year at 9:53 of the first period with assists going to Alec Webster and Zach Van Boxtel.
Austin Guevermont tied things for Essex before the period ended.
From then on, all the goals came off the sticks of Blades.
Evan Wells, on a powerplay, put the Blades ahead to stay at 8:33 of the second period, assisted by Ian Campbell and Ethan Waddick. It was Wells fifth goal of the year.
Then it was Waddick’s turn when he blasted a slapshot from the right point into the Essex net at 16:22 of the third period with Campbell and Wells assisting. Waddick now has three goals since joining the Blades in December
Essex pulled their goal with two minutes left for an extra attacker, but Tate Bowden spoiled their effort when he netted an empty net goal with 1:25 to play.
It was Bowden’s team-leading 21st goal of the season with assists going to Ben Brooks and Craig Spence.
Jake Vancoillie was once again between the pipes for Blenheim and stopped 30 of 31 Essex shots, while his teammates had 33 shots on Essex netminder Adam McBride.
BLADES BITS: Not dressed for Blenheim were Austin Drew, Noah Prudhomme, Alex Edwards and Ayden McKinlay…Blenheim will be on the road Friday to play the Canadiens at 7….There will be no home game next Sunday because of the Supper Bowl…The three stars of the game were Vancoillie, Campbell and Wells…Sunday’s ice sponsor was Zimmer Security & Cabling Solutions.