The third-place Blenheim Blades hosted the second place Lakeshore Canadiens in Provincial Junior Hockey league Stobbs Division play Sunday night and ended up dropping a 5-3 decision before 435 fans at the Blenheim Memorial Arena.
The Blades now own a 13-9-1 record for 27 points, and were in the game most of the way before Lakeshore scored three times in the third period to ice the win.
Blenheim will continue a busy week with road games in Wallaceburg against the Thunderhawks Wednesday, and Dresden Friday against the Kings – both games are at 7:30 p.m. – before returning home Sunday to host the Thunderhawks at 7.
Santa Claus will be on hand Sunday to greet fans, and following the game it will be the annual Skate With The Blades event. Chatham-Kent Ward 2 councilor Anthony Ceccacci is inviting all children 12 and under to attend the game as his guest.
Lakeshore struck first Sunday with Spencer Higginbottom scoring at 12:29 of the first period, with Blenheim’s Ethan Waddick tying things at 1-1 with his second goal as a Blade at 17:26, assisted by Austin Drew and Craig Spence.
The only goal of the second period came off the stick of Blades forward Tate Bowden at 17:33. Spence and Darby Lemieux assisted on Bowden’s 14th tally of the year.
Lakeshore’s Neil Garvey tied the game at 2-2 at 5:01 of the third period, with the Blades Ian Campbell putting his club 3-2 at 7:47 with an assist going to Sam Warriner.
The goal was Campbell’s eighth of the season.
The Canadiens powerplay then went to work with goals by Braydin Metcalfe at 9:57, and Eric Bisson at 14:24, for a 4-3 Lakeshore edge.
Marco Sladoje scored an empty net goal with 50 seconds left in the third period to ice the win for Lakeshore.
BLADES BITS: Lakeshore outshot the Blades 32-19 with the biggest margin being 13-4 in the third period…Owen Lemieux was in goal for Blenheim…Not dressed for the Blades were Connor Roth (injured), Evan Wells and Jaxon Boucher (healthy scratches) and Zach Van Boxtel (suspended)…For Spence it was his first game as a Blade before the home crowd, and the former Chatham Maroon did not disappoint as he assisted on two goals…Lakeshore took six of nine minor penalties called… Sunday’s ice sponsor was Mike Torrie of the Evergreen Financial Group Ltd.