WINDSOR, N.S. — The Avon River Rats have now won eight of their past nine games and continue to roll over the competition.
Their most recent win was a 6-3 verdict over the East Hants Ryson Construction Penguins at the Hants Exhibition Arena on Nov. 12.
River Rats’ head coach, Mike Lapierre, said in a recent interview that he is pleased with the work ethic being demonstrated by his players but noted they still have room for improvement.
“We still have some work to do on defense. We have been fortunate enough to pull some forwards back to the blue line and help us out, but our offense has been leading the way and we are still looking at defensive combinations as we head toward the Dec. 1 roster cut-down of players,” Lapierre said.
He also noted that the players are juggling school and work commitments, which can lead to some difficult games — like the 10-1 loss to Eastern Shore.
As for goaltending, Lapierre said Carter McMullin has been “rock solid” and is expected to lead the way.
With Kyle Pellegrini and another goaltender in camp, Lapierre said he is unsure how that will play out.
In the 6-3 win Nov. 12, their fourth in a row, Tyler Lapierre and Logan Cleveland both scored twice. Singles went to Samuel Plourde and Justin MacLellan.
The River Rats held period leads of 1-0 and 5-2. The win put the River Rats within three points of the first place Spryfield Attack, who have a 10-1-0-1 record. The River Rats’ record currently sits at 9-4-0-0.
River Rats 5, Spryfield 3
The Avon River Rats registered a huge win before hometown fans Nov. 5 as the Rats outscored the Attack 2-1 in both the first and second periods and went onto win 5-3.
Kyle Armsworthy, the team’s leading scorer, scored both first period goals. Alex King and Brett Delaney tallied in the second period and Devon Pennell added one in the third.
Spryfield kept the River Rats’ defense working the entire game, outshooting the River Rats 38-32.
River Rats 7, East Hants 6
On Nov. 4 in Lantz, the River Rats started strong and hung on for the 7-6 win.
Armsworthy finished the game with two goals and two assists. Armsworthy scored in the first period, as did Pennell and Lain Stewart. The River Rats were up 3-2 heading into the second.
Armsworthy scored on the power play in the second period but East Hants scored three times and took a 5-4 lead.
The River Rats were a new team in the third, scoring three goals to one by East Hants. Cam Dauphinee connected twice for the Rats and Adam Ferguson once.
Pellegrini allowed five goals on 14 shots and was replaced halfway through the game by McMullen, who allowed one goal on 14 shots.
The River Rats are scheduled to play at home against the third-place Eastern Shore Thunder Nov. 19.
On Nov. 25, the hometown team visits the East Hants Ryson Construction Penguins for a 2:30 p.m. start at the East Hants Sportsplex. The next night, at 7 p.m., the River Rats host the Cumberland Colchester Colts.
The River Rats will start December off with a three-game weekend. On Dec. 1, they visit the Colts and on Dec. 2, they visit the Spryfield Attack. On Dec. 3, they host the Colts at 7 p.m.