Sunday, September 8, 2013

Chiefs take Game 2 10-8, even Mann Cup at one game each

Kedoh Hill had a hat trick to help Six Nations even the
Mann Cup with a 10-8 win. (Photo: Judy Teasdale)

Kedoh Hill hadn't played a game of lacrosse in over a month. The young Six Nations Chief's last action was Game 3 of the Major Series Lacrosse semi-finals against Kitchener-Waterloo on August 6. But when called on to play in Game 2 of the Mann Cup championship series Saturday night, Hill stepped up big for the Chiefs, scoring a hat trick to help them win the game 10-8 and even the series 1-1.

“This morning, [Head Coach Rich Kilgour] said be ready for anything,” Hill said. “I didn't even think I was going to get a chance, really, but I knew that if there was a chance that I might get to play I had to make the best of it. When he told me I was in, I was like holy man. I was just excited.”

Hill scored once in each period and played a big role on the penalty kill. The PK was critical to the Chiefs' success in winning last night because Victoria had 15 power plays including at least half a dozen two-man advantages. The referees had called just 11 penalties resulting in a total of seven power plays in Game 1, but Saturday night the whistles were blowing fast and furious. The refs called 29 infractions leading to 26 power plays, including an astonishing number of 5-on-3's for a Mann Cup game.

The game was tied 4-4 after the first period and 6-6 after the second. The scoring generally followed a pattern of Six Nations taking a one- or two-goal lead then Victoria replying—the game was tied at 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 before the Shamrocks finally took their first lead of the game on a Nolan Heavenor power play goal at 7:38 of the third period.

Johnny Powless tied the game at 8 a couple of minutes later. The stage for the dramatic winning goal was set when Cody Jamieson, who finished the game with 2 goals and 3 assists, drove to the net and was checked into the crease. He made contact with 'Rocks goalie Matt Vinc and was called for goaltender interference (Heavenor had been tabbed for the same call when he collided with Evan Kirk after scoring Victoria's go-ahead goal).

Nolan Heavenor and Cody Jamieson each took goalie
interference calls and each scored big goals. 
(Photo: Judy Teasdale)
Jamieson emerged from the penalty box and just nine seconds later bounced a hard outside shot through traffic past Vinc. Colin Doyle broke his two-game scoring slump in the final minute, taking a pass from Kasey Beirnes and ripping it home for an insurance goal.

Kilgour said both goals reflected the scorer's tendencies. “[That was] kind of a tough call against Jamieson. They were calling it tight all night. I don't think what I saw and what the refs saw was the same thing, but they've got the whistle and that's how you respond to taking maybe a questionable penalty. Jammer came out and redeemed himself and that's what he does. He's a money player.”

As for Doyle, the veteran star forward had struggled in the first game but looked more like his usual self in Game 2. When he buried his goal, he spread his arms and exulted. “I think it's going to boost his confidence a lot,” Kilgour said. “Doyle's a great player, we wouldn't be here without him. Maybe he struggled a little bit, but that's going to happen to any great player. But what he does is he keeps working. He doesn't drag people down with him. He stays positive and he works hard. Whenever he has a bad game or two, he just works hard to get out of it.”

Stephen Keogh and Roger Vyse each added a goal and 3 assists for Six Nations. Jeff Shattler led the Shamrocks with 3 goals and 3 assists while Rhys Duch added 2 goals and 2 assists. The teams have Sunday off then will play Games 3, 4 and 5 on consecutive nights starting Monday. All games are at 7pm PT/10pm ET and can be seen via live pay per view webcast.

You can read more about Game 2 and the rest of the Mann Cup at IL Indoor and the Mann Cup 2013 web site.