The North Island Atom Eagles finished off their 2017-2018 season dropping a close two-game series to the top team in the Tier 3 division, the Victoria Ice Hawks, at the Don Cruickshank Memorial Arena in Port Hardy.
The Eagles and the Ice Hawks faced off in an exhibition game on Saturday, which the Ice Hawks managed to win 6-3 (with Eagles’ captain Rylan Krawietz scoring a natural hat trick).
The rematch was held the next day at 9:00 a.m., and this game went a little bit different. The Eagles were outshot by a good margin over a back and forth first and second period, but Eagles’ goaltender Matt Mercer kept his team in it by making numerous clutch saves to keep it 0-0 going into the third.
The Eagles would begin to press in the third for the go-ahead goal. Krawietz almost converted off an offensive rush with around 10 minutes left on the clock, but the Ice Hawks would answer back at 9:43, finally managing to knock the puck past Mercer for the first time in the game.
The Ice Hawks would add four more goals before the final buzzer, giving them a big 5-0 shutout in a game that was a lot closer than the scoreboard indicates.
The Eagles posted a 2-6-4 record this season, with 38 Goals For and 56 Goals Against.
Keep following the North Island Gazette for more on the Atom Eagles as playoffs are just around the corner!