Power play a work in progress

There are still a few blemishes that need to be worked out before the Wilfrid Laurier University men’s hockey team can start adding more tallies to the win column.


Photo by Emma Richards
Photo by Emma Richards

There are still a few blemishes that need to be worked out before the Wilfrid Laurier University men’s hockey team can start adding more tallies to the win column.

Despite winning 5-1 against the RMC Paladins on Saturday afternoon during Brantford’s Homecoming, the Hawks dropped their home contest 2-0 to the Carleton Ravens on Oct. 25. The Hawks currently sit at 2-3 and in the bottom half of the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) West division. Head coach Greg Puhalski did find some good performances to build on from the loss this weekend, particularly when it comes to the intensity level his team displays.

“It’s early in the year, we’ve been in a lot of close games. Our compete level this weekend has been better than earlier, which is something that’s got to keep on an upward trend,” he said.

A significant reason for the Hawks’ inconsistencies early on in the season has been their struggles on the power-play. The Hawks went 0-8 last Sunday evening and dates back to their opening game of the year. Despite having 18 opportunities, the Hawks have only been able to convert on one chance with the man-advantage so far.

Puhalski recognized this is currently an area of weakness for the team and something they must find a fix if they want to succeed.

“[The] power play right now has been a sore spot, we just haven’t been able to generate much offence and it’s just a matter of being a lot more intense,” he explained.

Meanwhile, the other side of special teams has been a completely different story for the Hawks. Currently, they are the only team in the OUA that has not surrendered a power play goal. Their penalty kill was stellar once again on Sunday when the Hawks shut down both of Carleton’s opportunities, including a 5-on-3 power play while the game was scoreless in the second period.

“Our penalty kill has been good this year, We’ve done a good job discipline wise of staying out of the box,” Puhalski said.

If the Hawks’ penalty-kill can sustain the level it is at right now and the power-play can chip in with a few more scoring opportunities, the Hawks could be on the right track to more success. Laurier will head to Quebec for their next couple games with a tilt against the Concordia Stingers on Friday in Montreal, followed by facing the No. 5 nationally-ranked UQTR Patriotes Saturday.

    Leave a Reply