The Lions’ Zach Leblanc (9) led the Lions with a goal and an assist as the Lions won their second straight game of the weekend 5-3 against the Volant. Leblanc has 11 goals and eight assists in 22 games with the Lions this season. O’Donohue photo
MORRISBURG – The Morrisburg Lions had two games this past weekend.
Lions 5 Volant 3: The Lions welcomed the Gatineau Hull-Volant to the Morrisburg Arena on Sat., Jan. 6, in the NCJHL. The Lions were coming off their fifth victory of the season after beating the Bytown Royals 5-3 in their previous game and looked to move to within a point of the South Grenville Rangers in ninth place.
The Volant sat in second place and needed the win to keep up with the first-place Papineau Vikings and stay ahead of the surging North Dundas Rockets. The Volant opened the scoring at 5:10 of the first period but the Lions evened the affair when Zach LeBlanc scored from Thomas Ouderkirk at 9:30.
The Lions outshot the Volant 10-8 in the opening period but settled for a one-all draw heading into the first intermission. The Volant scored just 37 seconds into the second period to take a 2-1 lead but the Lions fought right back as Jacob Kendrick scored just 31 seconds later on an unassisted goal to tie the game at two.
The teams took a two-all draw into the second intermission. The Lions took their first lead of the game at 3:09 of the third period when Ouderkirk scored an unassisted goal to make it 3-2. The Lions took a two-goal lead when Brandon Cameron slapped one home from their affiliated player, Cal Bilmer at 6:55 and made it 5-2 at 11:47 as Brain Landry scored a short-handed goal from Leblanc.
The Volant added a power-play goal with 31 seconds remaining but it was too little too late as the Lions hung on for their sixth victory of the season. Picking up the win in the Lions’ goal was Dean Gauvreau making 32 saves on 35 shots. With this win, the Lions moved to within a single point of the Rangers in ninth place.
Lions 5 Royals 3: The Lions travelled to the Bernard-Grandmaître Arena in Ottawa to take on the Bytown Royals on Fri., Jan. 5, in the NCJHL. The Lions sat in a two-way tie with the Blackburn Inferno for 10th place, the last playoff spot with just four wins and nine points.
The Royals haven’t had any success this season thus far with just a single win in 20 games. The Lions opened the scoring when Alec St. Gelais snapped one home from Zach LeBlanc at 4:24 of the first period to take a 1-0 lead.
The Lions added a short-handed goal as Bailey Norman lit the lantern at 6:10 to make it 2-0. The Lions took the 2-0 lead into the first intermission. The Royals cut the deficit in half just 1:14 into the second period on a short-handed goal of their own.
The Lions restored their two-goal lead when Brian Landry slapped one home from St. Gelais and Anthony Caserta at 9:32 but the Royals battled back at 16:45 to make it 3-2. The Lions answered 1:04 later when LeBlanc snapped one home from St. Gelais and took a 4-2 lead into the second intermission.
The Royals crept back into the game with a goal at 7:24 of the third period but the Lions extinguished any hopes the Royals had at a comeback when Brandon Cameron scored a shortie at 17:26 from Landry to put the game on ice as the Lions took the game 5-3 for their fifth win of the season. With the win, the Lions move into sole possession of tenth place. Picking up the victory in the Lions’ goal was Dean Gauvreau.
Up next: Sat. Jan. 13, 7:30 p.m., Lions vs. Cumberland Bandits, Ray Friel Recreation Complex, Orleans; Sun., Jan. 14, 7:30 p.m., Lions vs. Eagles, St. Isidore Arena, St. Isidore.