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Saturday, Apr. 21, 2018
Rockhounds post a big win against number one seed
by Randy Pascal

The summer of 2016 has been substantially less kind to the Sudbury Intermediate Rockhounds than was the summer of 2015.

Where coach Mike Marion and company entered provincials last August as the top ranked team in their age class in Ontario, lower numbers have created some challenges for the local crew. They have remained more than competitive throughout tournament play this summer, adding a northwestern Ontario flavour to the mix, but not as elite as they were one year ago.

This past weekend, however, provided a timely silver lining.

Taking part in the Fred Conradi Memorial Tournament in Virgil (just west of Niagara on the Lake), the Rockhounds again battled tooth and nail against some of the best the province has to offer. Thankfully, they closed on a high, taking down one of the top dogs en route to a "C" Division championship.

The Sudbury crew were in tough out of the gate, dropping an 8-4 decision to the 5th ranked (in Ontario) Cambridge Chiefs, as Nick Marion scored twice, with Thunder Bay imports Emmitt MacFarlane and Jared Lewkoski adding one goal each.

Next up were the Orangeville Northmen, sliding in just one slot below Cambridge in the all-Ontario seedings. Surrendering three goals in the first period, the Rockhounds were unable to bounce back, losing by a final count of 5-2, as James Munro and MacFarlane pulled the trigger.

The Hamilton Bengals (#12) provided an opponent that remained within shouting distance of the 16th ranked Rockhounds, and that parity was evident as the teams played to a 4-4 draw. Eric D'Angelo showed the way for Sudbury with a pair of markers, with Matt Reid and MacFarlane adding one each.

Finishing third in their pool, the locals would face the Guelph Regals in their "C" semi-final, outscoring the host team 8-6. The offensive outburst featured a hat trick from Marion, two goals from Munro, and solo efforts from Mitchell Mousseau, Eric Dumais and D'Angelo.

The victory would advance the Rockhounds up against the Nepean Knights, only the team which entered the tournament ranked first in the province. Completely unfazed, the Sudbury squad rode a four goal performance from MacFarlane, along with a single tally from Mousseau, to a 5-4 triumph over their highly-touted opponents.

The 2016 Sudbury Intermediate Rockhounds roster includes Mitchell Mousseau, Nick Marion, Austin Bouchard, David Withers, Evan Peltier, Bo Peltier, Eric D'Angelo, James Munro, Eric Dumais, Bailey Emond, Riley Furlong, Emmitt MacFarlane, Ben Wood, Jared Lewkoski, Thomas Reid, Matthew Reid and head coach Mike Marion.

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