U Sports Hockey: Rams fall off the ridge

The Ryerson Rams men’s hockey team failed to build off of their homecoming win, falling 5-3 against the Ontario Tech Ridgebacks on Saturday afternoon. 

If you were looking at the preseason calendar a few months ago, you would see the weekend’s two games, circle Friday night’s homecoming and make that one the focus. While no athlete or coach would ever admit to focussing on the big crowd, it clearly made a difference, as Ryerson did not look similar in Saturday’s matinee.

The two teams exchanged goals throughout the game, and many of them came within mere minutes of each other. Much similar to the Ridgebacks game against the University of Toronto the week prior, where goals were also exchanged in fast fashion. However, this time it was O-Tech who broke the trend and collected the victory. 

The Rams played veteran netminder Taylor Dupuis in Friday’s homecoming, meaning  Troy Timpani and Garret Forrest split the time between the pipes. Both did well but were flustered by some of the Ridgebacks chances. 

Ontario Tech opened the scoring with a hard-fought goal, barreling the puck in- but the Rams would reply with a much prettier one of their own less than 60 seconds later. Too bad there are no style points in the game of hockey. 

As was the story in the homecoming game, penalties ruled the day on Saturday. The Rams failed to discipline themselves, leading to unnecessary penalties and costly goals. 

One of the players who has had to adjust his hard checking game throughout the weekend is forward Hayden Mccool, who has picked up a handful of penalties over the two games. 

“You have to find something to get you going, it hard coming and it’s quiet last night was so much fun,” Mccool said after the game, unfortunately, the thing to get the Rams going was \a their feisty forecheck, leading to the aforementioned penalties. 

Although the penalties have been plaguing the Rams, the powerplay has been the exact opposite. Ryerson scored four powerplay goals over the weekend, and with the expected return of captain Matt Mistele, the powerplay could become even more potent. 

Ryerson now enters the second half of their preseason, welcoming the Concordia Stingers to the Mattamy Athletic Centre, before closing their exhibition schedule against Niagra in Lewiston, New York.

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