The Alumni weren’t playing around this year when they squared off against the North Island Midget Eagles in the 7th annual Hamper Game, which was held once again in front of a packed crowd at the Chilton Regional Arena in Port McNeill.
The Alumni were on the receiving end of a shocking 7-3 loss last year, and they looked downright determined from the drop of the puck to not have it happen again this year.
Entrance to the game was by donation of a food item, with the proceeds going to the Gazette’s Christmas Hamper Fund, and the game turned out to be a wild one, filled with exciting plays and some good natured hijinks between players and teammates from different generations.
The Eagles got out to an early lead thanks to goals from captain Tanner Roberts, Clayton Bono, and Jesse Lloyd.
The Alumni responded back with two goals from John Murgatroyd, who would prove to be a force to be reckoned with throughout the rest of the game.
Andrew Laming added another goal for the Alumni with 1:38 left in the first period to make it 3-3.
The second period was filled with more great goals and exciting plays. Murgatroyd scored at 15:25, and then again at 14:43.
Roberts responded with a beautiful penalty shot goal to cut the lead to 5-4 for the Alumni, but Dave Stewart scored at 10:47 to give the Alumni a two-goal lead again.
Murgatroyd found the back of the net once more at 10:12, and then Lloyd scored for the Eagles to make it 7-5 going into the third and final period.
The Alumni took over from there, scoring seven huge goals to blow the game wide open.
The Eagles fought back, with Roberts scoring at 2:07 to complete the hat-trick, and Josh Borg knocking the puck in with 45.9 seconds left, but that was all she wrote, as the Alumni conquered the Eagles with a thunderous 15-7 victory.
In a game that featured fathers and sons playing against each other, old teammates skating side-by-side once again, and a rugged group of Alumni who put on an exciting show for everyone that came out to watch and cheer them on, it was another fun-filled night of fast-paced hockey for a great cause.
The Hamper Game raised $353 and two tables full of donations for the Gazette’s Christmas Hamper Fund.