06/09/2016 7:53 AM
Photo By: Robyn Iwaskiw / Brampton Beast
Moment #9: Snowed In On The Road
The Beast, along with every other team in the ECHL, travel all over North America during the winter months to play out their schedule. One would assume that at some point in the season they would run into bad weather and it happened in a big way in January.
Starting on January 13 with a trip to Fort Myers to face the Florida Everblades, the Beast were slated to commence what would be their longest road trip of the season. The voyage was intended to include eight games across 17 days and stops in five different cities, including Elmira, Reading, Wheeling and Toledo.
But Mother Nature had other plans.
The first leg of the trip went off without a hitch. The Beast competed hard in all three games against the powerhouse Florida Everblades from January 13 to 16 and took the Elmira Jackals to a shootout January 18.
Then came the trip to Reading.
The snow started falling hard on January 22 in Reading but that didn't stop the Beast from coming away with a huge 2-1 overtime victory over the Royals at Santander Arena. Brampton's Joe Zarbo tied the game at one at the 4:09 mark of the third period to force overtime. In the extra frame, Steven Kaunisto took a pass in the high slot and roofed a perfect wrist shot beyond the outstretched glove hand of of Martin Ouellette to seal a big Beast victory.
The Beast were supposed to play game two of the series against Reading on Saturday, January 23 before heading to Wheeling to face the Nailers on Sunday, January 24 but the snow just did not stop falling.
The biggest winter storm of the season swept its way through the Eastern United States over the course of the next several days, forcing the ECHL to modify the league schedule. The regularly-scheduled game against the Royals would be postponed two full days until Monday, January 25. The Beast were supposed to play in Wheeling on that day, forcing the league to move that game to a date later in the season.
Unable to leave the team hotel to play or practice, the team bided its time in a variety of different ways. Some players and staff spent their days playing cards in the hotel lobby. Others spent their time in the hotel gym or went for a dip in the hotel pool, doing anything they could to help the days pass quickly.
After two long days holed up in their hotel, the storm finally broke on Monday and the final game against the Royals was on.
The Beast showed great perseverence and picked up where they left off. Reggie Traccitto and Tim Bozon paced the Beast to a 2-0 lead by the 6:40 mark of the second period but the Royals fought back to tie the game and force overtime thanks to timely goals from former Beast forward Yannick Tifu and Pavel Padakin.
The long days in the hotel ended up being worth it in the end as Travis Brown gave the Beast their second overtime winner in as many games as he rifled a point shot behind Ouellette at the 1:46 mark of the extra period. Beast goaltender Jordan Ruby manned the crease for both games against the Royals and stopped 68 of his 71 shots he faced that weekend.
The jubilant Beast, fresh off one of the strangest two-game sweeps in franchise history and a little road-weary from the extended and exhausting road trip, were excited to head home for a few days of much-needed rest before heading out to face their division rivals, the Toledo Walleye, on Friday, January 29.
The team was quick to pack up the bus following the end of the game in Reading and with dreams of sleeping in their own beds already creeping into their minds, the team was thrown another curveball.
The Beast's trusty ol' bus just would not start.
No mechanics were available at 11:00 pm on that Monday night, so the team was once again forced back into a Reading hotel for one more night in Pennsylvania. Luckily, the mechanics were able to get the bus running again early on Tuesday morning, allowing the Beast to finally escape snowy Reading with a big four points in tow.
‘Beast Authentics’ is a one-of-a-kind game-used memorabilia program designed to offer fans the opportunity to own a piece of Beast history in the form of a variety of exciting game-used artifacts, including goal-scored pucks, game-worn jerseys and more.
The commemorate the Beast’s Number 9 moment of the season and a pair of huge overtime victories, today’s Feature Item is a game-used puck used by Joe Zarbo to score an overtime winner during the 2015-16 ECHL season and is available for only $20.
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The Brampton Beast will be bringing their exciting brand of ECHL hockey back to the Powerade Centre this fall. Don’t miss a minute of the action! 2016-17 Memberships are now available, starting at $34.78 plus HST per month.
For more information, general media inquiries on the Brampton Beast or to purchase an item from 'Beast Authentics', please contact Chris Ballard, Public Relations Coordinator at (905) 564-1684 or firstname.lastname@example.org.