That’s all it took for the Rosetown Redwings to take a close game that could have gone either way, to one they had well in hand.
Casey Lee scored twice within 14 seconds in the second period to extend the Redwings led to 3-0 over the Stony Plain Eagles and they went on to take a 4-1 victory in Allan Cup quarter-final play before a full house at the Arena Thursday.
“Our bench needed a lift at that point and he provided it with those couple of goals,” said Redwings head coach Keegan McAvoy.
“That was a big shift as the game was getting boring, a little stale and that woke us up.”
Eagles head coach Mike Thompson agreed.
“That was a big part of the game,” he said.
“To be honest with you they didn’t earn any of their goals, we gave them to them, but those two quick ones hurt. We turned the puck over, then made a bad pinch. Two things you can’t do against a team that can score.”
Lee scored on a breakaway against Eagles netminder Wade Waters at 3:46 of the second period, then converted on a nice cross-crease pass from Jason Wagar on a two-on-one.
Up until then, the Eagles had battled the Redwings with everything they had, although Rosetown was controlling the play, especially on the defensive end.
“They played us hard, but we just wanted to make sure we were controlling the odd-man opportunities and getting pucks deep behind their D men and working on our cycle,” added McAvoy. “I thought the guys in the first period really set the tone and the second period we hammered it home.”
J.J. Hunter gave the Redwings a 1-0 lead at 9:50 of the first period, when he took a Shane Endicott pass in front, deked Waters and tucked the puck inside the post.
The Redwings held a 9-4 edge in shots in the opening frame, then allowed only three shots in the second and three in the third. One of those shots in the second, a redirect by Chevan Wilson at 14:40 on the power play, was the only shot to beat Redwings netminder David Spooner.
Overall the Eagles didn’t have an answer on how to break down the Redwings defence.
“They dropped off and pinched in the neutral zone and it was effective as we had only 13 shots,” said Thompson, who knew they had to beat a good team to continue on in the six-team tournament.
“It didn’t matter if it was Bentley, Clarenville or Rosetown, we had to beat them all to win it and obviously we couldn’t get past Rosetown.”
The Redwings advance into today’s 4 p.m. semifinal against the Clarenville Caribous.
McAvoy knows it will be a different style of game than that against the Eagles,.
“We’ll see what we need to do. We’ll look at some tape, but they do have two really good lines and guys we’ll have to be aware of.”
Today will be the Redwings third game in as many days, but McAvoy knows they can’t worry about it.
“We need to take it one game at a time and next is Clarenville. They have had a bit of a break while we have a short turn around but . . .”
l Luke Hunter had the other Redwings goal in the third period while the Redwings finished with 30 shots on Waters . . . The teams split 10 minor penalties with a 10 minutes misconduct going to Stony Plain . . . The winner today advances to the final at 5:30 p.m.. Saturday.