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  • Writer's pictureMatt Sanderson

Mid-February recap for the Niagara Falls Canucks

By: Matt Sanderson

Source: Niagara Falls Canucks Website

It has been another tough week for the Niagara Falls Canucks, who it seemed looked like at the end of January were a team starting to really put things together and looked like they could make a run for the playoffs. Let’s take a brief look at last week’s games and highlight the games for the remainder of this week and into next as there is a lot to breakdown.

Starting last Friday against the Leamington Flyers, Niagara Falls really kept up with the high-flying Leamington squad as they jumped out to an early 2-1 lead after 20 minutes. However, after Parker Forlin put the Canucks up 3-1 6:25 into the second the Flyers struck back with two unanswered goals knotting things up at 3-3 going into the final period. The Canucks were going toe to toe with Leamington and controlled most of the puck possession for the game and the 3rd period. Sadly, 2:06 left in the game Leamington took at 4-3 lead and never looked back. That was a heartbreaker for Niagara Falls because it felt as if the Canucks really held their own and kept Leamington on their heels all game. The one silver lining for Niagara Falls was they got their Captain back who had been out of the lineup since early November.

Next on their list was a tough Toronto Jr. Canadiens squad who is right in the thick of a playoff battle over in the Eastern Conference. Niagara Falls brought it to a one goal games a few minutes into the 2nd period but then the Jr. Canadiens struck back making the final score 7-1. Nate McFarlane had the lone goal for the Canucks giving him five goals on the season with three of those goals coming in his last six games. McFarlane has been a grinder all year, is a solid penalty killer and seems like he is all over the ice in many instances.

Finally, the last game of the week came Sunday in Milton, where the Canucks found the scoreboard twice in the game but ultimately the Menace got the upper hand beating Niagara Falls 6-2 despite Parker Forlin and Wolf Giles recording two points each in the game. The Menace have lived up to their name this season across the league showing the fire power they have had and creating match up problems.

So what do we take away from this week for Niagara Falls? There were some bright spots such as Cameron Lowe ‘Captain Canuck’ coming back, Nate McFarlane, Parker Forlin and Wolf Giles continuing to produce and despite the loss Niagara Falls has played pretty well at home this season and showed that again on Friday Night. Sadly, this puts the Canucks out of playoff contention in their first year in the league. But, as I have talked about multiple times, they have the players, the coaching staff and the success in the past to come out flying next season. Sometimes these things take time, some players come and go, but I really feel the Canucks are going to adjust to their mistakes from this year and capitalize off the success to head into next season.

The Canucks only have eight games left on their schedule with six of those being at home. It all starts tonight though, as the Canucks take on the Caledon Admirals tonight at the Gale Centre. The season record between these two clubs is 2-1 in favour of the Canucks with Niagara Falls 1-0 at home against them this year. Next they will play the Mississauga Chargers tomorrow in Mississauga, another team they are 2-1 on with their season series and 2-1 at home against. Both teams are behind Niagara Falls in the standings so are two wins which should lean in their favour.

Finally, the Trenton Golden Hawks will be in the Gale Centre on Family Day Monday. This team is the second best team in the league record wise and have given many teams lots of problems this season. However, do not count Niagara out as they have play quite well against some of the best teams in the league, such as Collingwood the number one team in the league.

Despite the ups and downs of the season, Niagara Falls is dialed in and wanting to finish strong this season and look toward next year. As always, if you have not had a chance to see the Canucks play this year, get yourself down to the Gale Centre for some exciting Junior ‘A’ hockey back in the Niagara Region.


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