The Picton Pirates dropped their first game in Campbellford in many moons and it took a monumental collapse by the club to leave the Campbellford-Seymour Arena empty handed.
In their only action over the weekend, the Pirates took a 7-6 lead into the final minute of play Saturday night and managed to surrender two shorthanded goals to drop an 8-7 decision.
“It’s a pretty empty feeling to score seven goals and not come out on top,” Picton General Manager Jason Parks said. “I don’t think you can fault the effort level but if we are being honest, pucks were going in our net that probably shouldn’t have been.”
Last weekend, Picton was buoyed by tremendous efforts by net minders Tyler Hayes and Nolan Lane as the club took three of four points from the Napanee Raiders and Amherstview Jets.
By the time the clock hit zero on Saturday night, both had played in the contest where Campbellford led for a grand total of six seconds and won their second game in a row.
“This is a junior hockey league where you have to prove yourself every night out and they are going to have to bounce back, but in the effort and prove they can handle the adversity and battle through it,” Parks added.
Picton got off to a great start as Jack Dow and Nate Boomhower tallied in the opening ten minutes to put the visitors ahead 2-0. Boomhower’s goal lead to a special moment for Midget AP County King Gerrit Kempers as his face off win helped set up Picton’s second goal and stood for the 16-year-old’s first junior point.
“One of the bright sides for us was the game of Gerrit Kempers, He was very solid defensively and chipped in with a point,” Parks noted. “He is one of those local 2005 birth year players we hope pays big dividends for us in the coming years.”
The Rebels would get back to within a goal off a power play at 11:53. But the Pirates quickly restored the two goal spreads just 12 seconds later as Trot Davis potted his first junior goal from a nice feed from captain Devin Morrison.
The clubs would trade goals in the last part of the frame. Rhett Cleverdon scored at 16:09 to make it 3-2 but Noah Brant ripped home his 10th of the season at the 17:39 mark to allow his club to take a 4-2 lead to the dressing room.
Campbellford’s Josh Sainthill scored in the opening minute of the second to make it a 4-3 but Picton poured it on in the early part of the second.
Owen Dever picked the top corner off a Morrison face off win at 6:41 for a power play goal.
The very next shift, Dow fired home his ninth of the season to give Picton a 6-3 spread in the 27th minute.
“We get that game to 6-3 in the final five minutes of the second, there has to be a collective instinict amongst the players those are going to be the most important five minutes of the game. That score is awful tough to battle back from,” Parks said.
Unfortunately, that was the time Picton started taking on water.
Sainthill’s second of the game from the blue line had some odour to it at 18:15.
Just 32 seconds later, Hayes was lifted in favour of Lane as Jacob McPhee’s fifth of the season went sailing into the Picton net to make it a one goal hockey game.
Picton managed to make it a two goal spread in the third when Boomhower drove wide and set up Dow for his hat trick at 6:39.
But Jett Butler’s power play goal at 9:56 set up a heart breaking finish for the Pirates.
With starter Eric Martin on the bench for the extra attacker, Picton withstood the initial charge from the Rebels and Boomhower would make it past the redline before he was fouled by McPhee.
Up a goal and a man with 61 seconds left, the safe money was on Picton.
But the Rebels weren’t done.
Picton couldn’t hold the line on the offensive zone face off and a Rebels rush allowed Campbellford to pull Martin again.
Benny Scarr would shovel home his eighth of the season on a scramble to tie the game at 7-7 with 42 seconds left.
Then, in the last sequence of the contest, Adam Klaas lumbered down the ice and picked the far corner from the half wall on Lane with six seconds left to cap off a wild comeback.
Picton looks to regroup with a home and home against Frankford this weekend, hosting the Huskies on Thursday before heading on the road Saturday.