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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

Newcomer, Grandbois, propels 73’s 

Photo by Laurie Beaten: Brock Grandbois drives the net during Tuesday’s “Pink at the Rink” game against Wallaceburg. Grandbois finished the game with 2 goals and would add 2 more Friday. 

by Garrett Fodor 

This past week, the Essex 73’s hosted the Wallaceburg Lakers. The game was also Essex’s annual “Pink at the Rink” night, where the team played in pink jerseys to support breast cancer awareness.

The Lakers, which entered winless on the year, were in for a test. 

  The lone goal in the first two periods came from newcomer, Brock Grandbois, as he netted his first junior hockey goal, nine minutes into the game, beating Lakers’ goaltender, Travis Moore. 

  Entering the third period up 1 to 0, Michael Vieira doubled his team’s lead. Grandbois netted his second of the night, six minutes later. Wallaceburg responded, but Jack Sanko and Riley Meyerink responded back for Essex, making the game 5 to 1. The Lakers beat Jax D’hondt with seven seconds left, but 5-2 is as close as the Wallaceburg got to catching the 73’s. 

  The 73’s were looking to continue its winning form on Friday, as they went on the road to face the Dresden Jr. Kings. This is the same first-place Kings team that defeated Essex 3-2 in overtime a few weeks prior. 

Similar to the previous meeting, the two teams were neck-and-neck throughout the first 20 minutes of play. The goalies remained unbeaten, and shots were 14-13 for Essex.

  It was not until midway through the first period, when newcomer Grandbois continued his torrid pace of late and placed a bullet by Jr. King’s goaltender, Brett Brochu. Eric Carter responded minutes later, beating 73’s goalie, Jax Dhondt, to tie the game at one.

  In the third, Grandbois’s line mate, Quinn Fazekas, forechecked the puck in the offensive zone and created a turnover. Grandbois was quick to realize and drove the net, as he roofed his second of the night. In the final minutes, Dresden received several chances to tie it up, including man-advantages and pulling the goalie with two minutes remaining. The 73’s defence, however, did not shy from the storm. Essex would hold on for a 2-1 win over Dresden. The 73’s outshot the Flags, 38-34.

  The win now gives Essex a share of first place in the Stobbs Division. 

  Essex will now have a big test, when the team hosts Mooretown before travelling to Lakeshore on Friday. 


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