In the weeks leading up to the 2017-18 ECHL season, keep your eyes peeled on BramptonBeast.com as the Beast take you on a trip down memory lane and count down the Top 10 Moments of the 2016-17 Season, presented by Beast Authentics.
Every week, the Beast will recap one of the season’s most memorable moments, including an in-depth video hosted by the Beast’s in-game host, Nikki Jeffrey. Each week, the Beast will also be listing specially-selected official game-worn items on the team’s official eBay page, giving you the opportunity to own a piece of each incredible moment.
Top 10 Moments of the 2016-17 Season - #7 – Game of the Year at Adirondack – March 12, 2017
At least once in every hockey season, a game between two teams is so jam-packed with action that the game and its moments live on in infamy.
During the 2016-17 Brampton Beast season, the club participated in several memorable contests en route to their greatest season in team history, but none more memorable than Number Seven on our list of the Top Moments of the 2016-17 Season.
Our ‘Game of the Year’ took place on March 12, 2017 at the Glens Falls Civic Center as the Adirondack Thunder hosted the Beast in what was to be a hotly contested North Division matchup.
The game featured a little bit of everything: an incredible comeback, funny bounces, dramatic momentum swings and a whole lot of goals.
The game started well for the Beast as defenseman and assistant captain Jordan Henry banged in a rebound in front of Thunder starting goaltender and former Beast Drew Fielding just 1:57 into the game.
Adirondack quickly stormed back and seemingly took control of the game before the buzzer sounded to end the opening frame.
Thunder forward Brock Montgomery pounced on a rebound in front of Beast starter Zach Fucale to tie the game at 1-1, less than three minutes after Henry’s game-opening goal.
Things took a turn toward the bizarre as the Thunder took the lead later in the first, as Brian Ward picked up a loose puck just inside the red line and innocently sent the puck along the left wing boards. As Fucale left his cage to play the puck behind the net, the puck, with a mind of its own, hit a stanchion along the glass, changed direction and tumbled into the vacant net, giving the Thunder the lead.
The funny bounce gave the hometown squad some momentum and they capitalized on it. Ward scored again less than two minutes later to send the Thunder into the first intermission with a 3-1 lead.
Adirondack kept its foot on the gas to start the second frame and quickly extended the lead to 4-1 thanks to a James Henry goal just over three minutes into the period.
Then, the Beast woke up.
Along the right wing wall, Luke Pither set up defenseman Tim Billingsley with a nice, soft pass before he one-timed a perfect shot that beat Fielding just inside the post to cut the deficit to 4-2 at the 4:47 mark of the second.
James Henry struck again for Adirondack at 6:51, pushing the lead to an insurmountable margin of 5-2 with time running out.
But the Beast simply wouldn’t quit. At the 9:32 mark of the second, David Pacan was the recipient of a lucky bounce as a centering pass from Connor Crisp deflected off a defenseman, hit Pacan in the shin pads and tumbled into the net, giving the Beast some hope with the Thunder lead cut to 5-3.
In the final two minutes of the second frame, a seeing-eye wrist shot from Reggie Traccitto sent the Beast bench into a frenzy and gave the club new life as he lit the lamp for his fourth goal of the season, making it a 5-4 game.
Smelling blood, the Beast completed the comeback and tied the game with just over a minute left in the frame as David Vallorani curled out of the left corner and spotted a wide open Luke Pither, who sent a screaming one-timer on goal that beat Fielding, tying the game at 5-5 heading into the decisive third period.
For the second time in the game, it was Jordan Henry who gave the Beast a lead as he settled a puck at the point and sent his patented snap shot on goal. The shot got through a sea of bodies and beat Fielding above the blocker hand, giving the Beast their first lead since the first period.
The eventual North Division champs wouldn’t simply give the Beast the victory. Gunnar Hughes found himself inside the Beast zone with speed as he snapped a quick shot on goal. The puck hit the defenseman’s stick and redirected into the net, fooling Andrew D’Agostini, who took over for Fucale in the second frame.
With the game tied at 6-6 with less than five minutes remaining in regulation time, it was clutch time for the Beast and they were up to the challenge.
Luke Pither showed great patience with the puck before sending a shot on goal from the point. Rookie Chris Leveille saw the shot perfectly and got just enough of the shot to change its direction and elude the goaltender, giving the Beast a crazy 7-6 lead in this back-and-forth affair.
Captain Brandon Marino gave the Beast their first multi-goal lead of the contest less than a minute later, accepting a flawless saucer pass from David Vallorani on a 2-on-1 and lifting a shot into the top corner for the 8-6 edge.
Now in desperation mode, the Thunder pulled the goaltender in the final moments of play and kept things interesting with a goal from Brian Ward, cutting the Beast lead back to 8-7.
Defenseman Willie Corrin sealed the deal and put an end to what could be considered the most exciting game in the ECHL this season as his simple clearing attempt hit a stanchion, flipping the puck onto its side. All anyone could do was watch as the puck rolled the length of the ice and into the open net, finally cementing an incredible Beast victory over their division rivals.
When it was all said and done, four Beast skaters finished the game with a three-point night (Pither, Corrin, Henry and Vallorani) as the Beast established a new club record for goals in a game with nine.
To commemorate the #7 Moment of the 2016-17 season, the Beast will be auctioning off a collection of goal-scored pucks featuring the heated rivalry between the Beast and the Adirondack Thunder.
The auction is now LIVE. To place your bids, please visit the Beast’s official eBay page here: http://www.ebay.ca/usr/brampton_beast. The auction will run for seven days starting on June 27, 2017.
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