The Bulls B took on the DkIT Ravens in the IIHL Recreational Division, and as always it was going to be another intense affair. Last season the Ravens did the double over the Bulls in the League and piped them for the fourth play-off spot by a single point. Both teams were unbeaten thus far, so it was a crucial game. The Bulls supported a full cast of players and welcomed back goalkeeper Sean Pepper, who had been away. The Ravens were missing both Patrick Jarratt and Robert Flanagan, two first choice defensemen.
From the opening faceoff, it looked as though it was going to be an even contest. Both teams had players capable of playing in higher divisions, and some developing players too. The Bulls B dominated the exchanges, but Ravens goalie Miceal O’Neill was equal to everything. But the Bulls pressure then paid off. As Bulls forward Roman Culak cut into the slot, he got his own rebound to take the lead. The Bulls kept the pressure on too, and were unlucky to be going into the second period only one goal up.
In the second period, the college men started to find their legs a little, and had some good build up work from their forwards. Hayes, Monahan and Rogan had chances but Pepper was equal to them. The Bulls then doubled their advantage with a shot from the point, Roman Pecho getting the deflection, beating O’Neill just over the shoulder. It looked pure sailing for the Bulls, and they were looking good to take the contest by the scruff of the neck. Just as it looked as though the Bulls were dominating, the Ravens got a goal back. Defenseman Michael Rogan joined the rush, and after receiving a heads up pass from Blaine Rennicks, he found himself on a partial breakaway. Making no mistake, he bet Pepper blocker-side to provide a glimmer of hope for the flat-footed Ravens.
It didn’t take long for the Bulls to restore their advantage. Robert Grochowicz found himself with the puck out on the right wing and beat O’Neill five-hole, with an excellent shot. The Ravens responded soon after on the powerplay, with Aiden Morris taking a penalty for hooking. Stephen Hayes played to puck across the blue line where Rogan hit a shot just wide, and Monahan was on hand to score from the narrowest of angles. It finished 3-2 at the end of the second period.
The third period was again dominated by the Bulls, who just out-skated and out-played the Ravens. They finished the game off 9:07 into the third. With yet another faceoff win, a shot from the point was well saved, but Pecho was on the doorstep to finish, and put the game seemingly out of sight, 4-2. The collegiates had a chance late on, with Stephen Hayes denied by Pepper who saved 12 of 14 shots, and got his first win of the season. It was the first loss this season for the Ravens, with goalie O’Neill making 27 saves. The Bulls march on unbeaten, where the Ravens will look back on what was a very poor performance.
Final Score Bulls 4 – 2 Ravens.