Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Sharks, Isles emerge as Hutch Cup finalists

Appleton gets special Sammis jersey Sunday

The top-seeded Sharks (11-3-1) and #3-seeded Isles (8-6-2) are the finalist teams for the Hutch Cup championship game of the 2010 B+ Hockey League set for Sunday, April 4 at Sun Valley Skating Center.

Game time is 7:45 p.m. preceded by the consolation game at 6:30 p.m. between the #5-seeded Senators (5-6-5) and #2-seeded Vipers (7-5-4).

Friends and fellow skaters of Tim Appleton are encouraged to show up at the rink Sunday at 6:15 p.m. to salute "Apple" as he returns to the ice to open the third annual Hutch Cup championship evening.

The B+ League will be presenting Tim with the Sammis jersey to honor Appleton for his 25-plus years of dedication, inspiration and devotion to hockey in Sun Valley.

In addition, the B and B+ leagues will have their season-ending pizza and beverage party following the B league games and during the Hutch Cup finals starting around 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 4.

Sunday's preliminary B games feature Blues vs. Rangers at 4 p.m. and Flyers vs. Hawks at 5:15 p.m.

Sunday night's games

Sunday night, the Islanders advanced to the finals with a 3-2 victory over the Senators in a hard-fought battle that wasn't decided until the final minutes of the game.

The Isles struck first as Nic Thomas wristed home the first goal. Bryan Speth equalized for the Nats, then Rod Watson of the Isles slipped the puck pass the Nats' goaltender in the second period. Again, Speth had the Nats answer for a 2-2 tie.

With just 1:21 remaining in the third period Dale Johnson found the upper right corner with the winning goal for the Islanders.

Having been upset by the Senators 3-1 in the first round, the Vipers had a score to settle in order to earn a return engagement with the Nats in the consolation game. And the Vipers did just that, eliminating the tired Hutch's Bad Dogs 3-1.

John Ellison Jr. (2 goals) and Jim Laski scored to establish a 3-0 lead for the Vipers and Tom Trieschman's late goal for #4-seeded Hutch's Bad Dogs (6-8-2) wiped out the shutout.

In Sunday's loser-out game, Hutch's Bad Dogs looked sharp in their first of two games of the night—with a 5-4 win over #6-seeded Wildcats (2-11-3).

Dave McCormick (2 goals) led the Dogs while Kipp Mills, Chris Roberts and John Seiller added singles. Gunnar Whitehead had two goals for the Wildcats. Other scorers were Merri Whitehead and Bill Sprong.

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