On September 9, 2017, the Minor Peewee Jr. Rangers started their team bonding efforts by travelling to Niagara Falls, NY, to play a one-day, two-game, mini-series versus the Cheektowaga Warriors.
This event had been in the making since last year, when the Major Atom A/AA Jr. Rangers — made up of many of the same players as this year’s squad — played in the Gene Harrington tournament and developed a strong rapport with the Cheektowaga team when one of their players had an unfortunate injury during a game.
Staying in touch over the course of the summer, the mini-series idea was born, and it turned out to be a fantastic day for all involved.
Game one saw the Jr. Rangers hold a strong territorial advantage while outshooting their opponents by a 28–19 margin, but the Cheektowaga goaltender played exceptionally well, and the battle ended in an exciting 2–2 draw.
Both teams then went out to lunch at the Rainforest Café before heading back to the rink for game number two.
Game two was even more exciting, as both teams upped the intensity with some great play. Once again, the Jr. Rangers outshot the Warriors, this time by a 29–18 margin, and after regulation time, the score was dead-locked 3–3.
A fun, full team shoot-out followed to determine the final outcome, and the Jr. Rangers put on a scoring display, outscoring the Cheektowaga squad 7–3.
A great time was had by all, and we are already discussing next year’s event with the hopes of adding a third, Sunday morning game to the mix.
Thanks to the players for their excellent play and showing their class at the restaurant, and to the parents and families for their energy and support.
Thanks, too, to the Cheektowaga team and families for hosting such a fun day.
We will be looking forward to doing it again next year!
Submitted by Tim Petzold, Head Coach of Minor Peewee Jr Rangers