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MHKY: RYERSON 5, york 2 december 2 | MATTAMY HOME ICE

Rams End 2017 With 5-2 Win Over York

Written by: Ryan Bacic, Photos by: Alex D'Addese

TORONTO – In a rematch against a cross-town rival, the Rams offense proved to be too much this time around for the visiting York Lions, as they came away with a 5-2 win on Saturday night at the Mattamy Athletic Centre. With the win, the Rams firmly established themselves in second place in the OUA’s Western conference.

Going into Saturday night’s game, the Rams had just come off of a four-game road trip that saw them acquire five out of a possible eight points

“Battling, going through those ups and downs as a team, you always learn and improve your game just by doing that,” stated Rams forward Vince Figliomeni (Bolton, Ont.) on what he thought the road trip had taught the team.

While Ryerson would be the team to eventually come away with the win, it would be York that would be the first team to place themselves on the scoreboard. Eleven minutes into the evening’s opening period, Lions forward Reid Jackman (Etobicoke, Ont.) would open up the scoring. Fortunately for the Rams, freshman forward Cavin Leth (Taber, Alta.) would have an answer, tying up the scoreboard just a minute later off of a powerplay goal. In the dying minutes of the first period, Lions forward Scott Feser (Red Deer, Alta.) would tuck in his teams second, and final goal, on the evening to give York the lead heading into the intermission.

Coming back onto the ice for the second period, the Rams would play with the level of intensity that they have become notorious for throughout the league. Eight minutes into the period, Mitchell Skapski (Abbotsford, B.C.) would contribute his second goal of the season, off of a spinning backhand in the slot, to even up the scoreboard at two goals a piece. Not to be outdone, Figliomeni would similarly tap in his second goal on the season to give the Rams their first lead of the evening three minutes later. And, of course, no Ryerson scoring-streak would be complete without Leth making a contribution as the freshman, whose name has become synonymous with multi-goal game performances, tucked away his second goal on the evening with five-minutes left to play in the period.

With Ryerson up 4-2 with one period left to play, it would be up to their defensive effort to maintain the lead. This, however, proved to be little trouble for the Rams, as the improvements they have made to their defensive-play relegated much of the third period's play to the neutral zone. With Ryerson netminder Taylor Dupuis (New Liskeard, Ont.) preventing all of York’s 11 third-period shot attempts from finding the twine, it would remain 4-2 throughout the final 20 minutes of play, until Leth fired home his third-goal of the night on an empty net with just 30-seconds left to play.

“It’s just a tale of two teams that know each other very well, and when we face off against one another it’s anyone’s ball game,” said Assistant Coach Nathaniel Brooks on the win tonight, adding “I think it was just our night tonight.”

When asked about whose performance stood out to him the most evening Brooks selected defenseman Jared Walsh (Toronto, Ont.), stating “he makes all the plays defensively, and he’s depended on…he does all the little things so well.”

Of special note throughout the past few games, and in tonight’s game in particular, are the scoring contributions of Ryerson players who are seldom seen on the score sheet. In the past two games alone, Walsh, Figliomeni, Andrew Mullen (Toronto, Ont.) and Mitchell Skapski (Abbotsford, B.C) have all contributed either their first or second goal of the season in two consecutive Rams victories.

“The more guys that can chip in offensively, the more confidence is built in the overall group,” stated Assistant Coach Brooks on the breadth of the teams goal scorers of late, adding “we are not depending on three or four guys to score goals… it’s them being rewarded for doing the right things.”

The Rams will start off the 2018 portion of their season on the road against the Laurier Golden Hawks at the Sun Life Arena in Waterloo on January 5.

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