Wolves Wallop Federals
By Jay Harris
Watertown, NY - At the end of a week filled with a whirlwind of changes, the Watertown Wolves hosted the newly formed Northern Federals at the Watertown Municipal Arena on Friday night. The Wolves were originally scheduled to face the Cornwall Nationals in a battle for second place, but it was announced earlier in the week that the Nationals were ceasing operations for the remainder of the 2017-2018 Federal Hockey League season for financial reasons. The league quickly assembled the Northern Federals to fill in the remaining five road games the Nationals were scheduled to play in Watertown.
The Wolves kept the Federals' lamp lit for most of the first period, scoring 6 goals. John Scully started it off ninety seconds into the period, with assists from Dallas Ingram and Troy Polino. Gavin Yates racked up goal number two on a play from new Wolf Paul Fregeau and CJ Hayes. Hayes sped off on a fast break to score the third goal unassisted. Troy Polino got a goal of his own with help of league-leading scorer Tyler Gjurich and Wolves Captain John Scully. Hayes and Gavin Yates set Fregeau up to the be the fifth Wolf to tickle twine with just under four minutes left in the period. After five goals Ilya Zhurin came out of the Federals' net and was replaced with Andrew Gedert. Hayes initiated Gedert to the onslaught with his second goal of the night, with assists from Yates and Fregeau.
The Wolves let up on the Federals and only scored five goals in the second period. Gavin Yates went five-hole for his second goal with assists from John Scully and new Wolf Alex D'Oliveira. Anton Lennartsson passed the puck to Dallas Ingram for a wrister that tickled twine. Tyler Gjurich extended his lead in the league on goals, flying solo for the third goal of the period. The fourth goal of the period came from Cameron Dimmitt via CJ Hayes. Connor Annett scored his first goal of the season when he tapped the puck under Gedert's skate from behind the net to make the score 11-0 at the end of the second period.
The Wolves would see four penalties come their way in the third period. Anton Lennartsson put the final nail in the Federals' coffin on an assist from new Wolf Ryan Rotondi. The Federals denied Mitchell Maraschiello the shutout with two goals in the final minutes of the game. Their first goal came from Liam Morris, assisted by Ryan Alves and Davide Asselin. Nikita Polishchuk got goal number two, assisted by Adrian Moyes and Asselin, ending the game with a score of 12-2 in favor of Watertown.
CJ Hayes earned the 1st Star of the Game. Gavin Yates and Troy Polino earned the 2nd and 3rd Stars, respectively.
The Watertown Wolves are in second place in the Federal Hockey League standings. Head Coach Trevor Karasiewicz and the Wolves will be back in action Friday, March 2nd against the Danville Dashers at the Watertown Municipal Arena. The Puck drops at 7:30 PM.
Photo credit: CMC Advertising Design & Photography