Sports Hockey

Siskins win 19 straight

 Gisele Winton Sarvis

With a 3-1 win over the Midland Flyers Thursday night the Stayner Siskins have run their unbeaten streak to 19 consecutive games

Now 32-3-0, the Siskins continue to lead both divisions of the Provincial Junior Hockey League’s (PJHL)’s Northern Conference. They are seven points ahead of second place Alliston Hornets and second in the province behind the Ayr Centennials (33-3-0) in the South Conference.

The team’s No. 1 forward line of centre Ben Hughes, Jordan Taylor and Zack Trott has been packing a powerful punch to opponents.

Taylor was the star of the game, scoring two power play goals in the second and third period, both assisted by Ben Hughes and by Austin Fischer and Michael Holmes.

Taylor has now racked up points in 27 consecutive games, since rejoining the team.

“I’ve had a point a game every since I got back from Guelph,” Taylor said about starting the season with the Guelph Hurricanes Junior B team.

“It feels good definitely. I’m playing on a good line with Trotty and Hughes. They are helping me out a lot. We are meshing together really well. It’s a lot of fun,” said Taylor, 17.

“The plan is to keep doing that for the rest of the season and see how that goes for the playoffs too.”

The Creemore native, who grew up playing minor hockey locally, played for the Siskins last season. This season he has scored 26 goals and 35 assists for 61 points.

Head coach Dave Steele said it was nice to get Taylor back on the team.

“It was immediate the impact that he had for us. He’s a guy that can keep up with Hughes and Trott in talent and he’s earned his way on that line and he’s keeping it going.”

His line mate, Zack Trott, of Honeywood, has broken the rookie league record for 16 years olds. Trott now has 59 points from 32 goals and 27 assists, while the record was in the mid fifties.

Trott is also eighth in points in the PJHL league and is leading the point race for rookies this season in competition with another rookie from Ayr.

Leading the league scoring is Siskins forward Ben Hughes with 90 points, 39 goals and 51 assists. The Midhurst native played for the Ancaster Avalanche Jr. B team last year, but chose to play for the Siskins this year to be closer to home and work.

Opening the scoring Thursday night was Midland’s Francesco Corona, assisted by Matt Walilko and Ethan Parent. Corona with 69 points is third in points in the North Conference, behind Walilko with 70 points and Hughes.

The first goal scored by the Siskins came at 10:42 in the second period by Steven Pickard with assists from Lucas Jeffery and Jake Rowbotham.

The Siskins picked up Christian Papineau from the Caledonia Corvairs from the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League, who played Thursday night for the first time. Papineau played with the Siskins two years ago as a 16-year-old.

“He’s a very offensive defence man,” said Steele. “We are going to try to use that once he gets his feet under him.”

Siskins goalie Eric Pitcher got the win saving 23 shots on net.

Flyers goalie Jake Norton made 39 saves including a couple of spectacular gloves grabs.

The Siskins have seven games left in the regular season. They play Monday night at the Trisan Centre versus the Schomberg Cougars. The next home game is Jan. 19 versus the Huntsville Otters, and Jan. 20 in Penetanguishene against the Kings.

“We face Alliston for the last time on the 22nd and that’s the one we are really working hard for,” said Steele, about the afternoon home game.

Siskins finish the season with three games the following week: Jan. 26 at home against Penetang, Jan. 27 in Midland versus the Flyers and Jan. 29 in Huntsville versus the Otters.

The playoffs begin in February.

“We are going to the playoffs, it doesn’t matter which team, it’s business as usual,” said Steele.


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