1) Chad Katunar: Many, many stars in this epic but if it wasn’t for the heroics of Katunar in the second period, his numerous eye-popping saves we couldn’t even talk about overtime, let alone a game three win.
Even though the Warriors scored twice in the second, Katunar was putting on a goaltending clinic. He made some ridiculous goal-line pad saves off a couple mad scrambles and was at his best robbing David Pope of his hat-trick goal on an out-of-this-world leg spasm.
Katunar played like a veteran tonight in a very tough environment, as he knew being down 4-2 was still manageable but a fifth goal would have been the night. Even though it might have felt like the walls were caving in, Katunar stood tall and helped his team get their feet back underneath them.
In the two overtime periods he was very good, no, not as busy as Tyler Briggs but he came up some big stops when the Tribe were buzzing. Katunar might have turned in his best performance of the season, even though four did get by him. He was truly that good had the second period performance by itself was worthy of a star. Katunar buckled down at the right time and again came up clutch in the playoffs.
2) Veterans: Tonight wasn’t easy by any means nor did the Vees make it easy on themselves. However, when it came to crunch time, the Vees veterans, Sam Mellor, Wade Murphy, John Siemer, Rob Mann, Thomas Nitsche and Bryan Sinz to new a few, stepped up and propelled the Vees to the win. There actually was a lot more than just them on this night, as everyone was making big plays at key times to keep this game within reach.
There was some guys who ate up some serious minutes on the blue-line and all six were pretty rock solid minus a couple hiccups early in the second period. The Vees older guys, players with some playoff season were dependable. Sam Mellor took on a big responsibility taking some big face-offs and again double-shifting at times. Others continued to put their body in harms way of pucks, Thomas Nitshce, Bryan Sinz, Rob Mann Troy Stecher and well the entire D-core was great at blocking but also sealing off shooting legs.
3) Gutting it Out: The Vees sure did.
- It’s late, enjoy the links above for details about tonight’s game. I will have more on game three tomorrow morning on the blog.