Dallas DrakesMackinac Island MooseDALLAS DRAKES



SERIES PREVIEW Playoffs begin for the Moose with the Drakes in town.
GAME #1 Dallas gets on the board early with a Sinisalo goal. Then a Sundstrom penalty gives the Moose a chance to even things up, but the PK unit is up to the task and the 1-0 lead stands. A little later, a Flockhart minor goes really bad, and the Moose even it up with a Kurri goal. That holds for all of one minute until Gilbert finds a chink in the Moose defense and gets the lead back for the Drakes. On a hot streak, Gilbert scores another goal before the period ends, and the Drakes take a 3-1 lead to the locker room.

The Moose bounce back quickly, as MacLean scores in the first minute of the 2nd period. The defense makes some nice adjustments and holds the Drakes to only 6 SOG. Dallas kills off an early minor. The Moose kill off 2 overlapping minors late and go to the 3rd down 1.

Defenses rule in the 3rd, holding the teams to a combined 13 SOG. A frustrated Moose team has to pull the goalie late to get a threat going, and it pays off with only 79 seconds left, as Kurri scores to tie it up and force overtime.

Over time – Fans barely get settled in their seats when Sinisalo pops in a goal to send the home fans home very sad.

FINAL Dallas 4, Moose 3, OT

1st star – Sinisalo 2G 4pts
2nd – Gilbert 2G
3rd – Kurri 2G 3pts

GAME #2 Moose flip the script and take the lead early. Cote with a rocket from the blue line. The Drakes, however, did not get the script and change the mood in the arena with 2 goals. Sinsalo (I hate that guy) early, and O’Reilly just before the end of the period. 2-1 Drakes

Some adjustments by the Moose work in the 2nd. Goals by Kurri and Propp just past halftime flip the lead to the Moose, 3-2. But the Drakes answer a minute later and it is tied at 3. The period melts away tied at 3.

Both offenses struggle through the first half of the 3rd. The Moose juggle the first 2 lines and get the power scorers back together, and it pays off with goals by MacLean and Maruk to make it 5-3 with less than 3 minutes to go. The Drakes pull the goalie, and it pays off, but too late, as the goal by Sundstrom with 7 seconds left makes the final 5-4 Moose.

1st star – O’Reilly 2G
2nd – Sundstrom 1G 2pts
3rd – Maruk 1G

  The Moose manages only a split at home and the Drakes now have a home-ice advantage. Hopefully, the shuffling of lines gets the offense going on the road.

Game 3 in Dallas, who takes the 2-1 lead in the series.

GAME #3 The Drakes come out controlling the puck and Bobby Gould gets a great feed from Rod Langway, but Rollie the goalie shuts the door and the Moose takes advantage right away. Marcel Dionne tries to skate it out of his own zone and Mike O’Connell checks him into the boards, the puck squirts loose and Randy Ladouceur wrists a seeing-eye shot over Glen Hanlon’s glove for a 1-0 lead 1:30 in. The Moose keep on coming and at the 2:45 mark of the first period Paul Maclean wrists a shot past Hanlon to give the Moose a 2-0 lead. Jari Kurri and Mike Eaves helped in the tic tac toe after Ron Flockhart turned the puck over at center ice. The Moose continue to dominate play and John Barrett pulls down Dan Quinn to put the Moose on the power play. The Drakes break up the power play until Pat Price pulls down a clearing pass and sends it over into the circle where Paul Maclean shoots it and Jari Kurri deflects it into the goal. The Moose now has 3 goals on 6 shots. The Drakes finally get going in the period as the ice tilts against the Moose but Melanson stops shot after shot as the Moose go to the intermission up 3-0 with the Drakes up 13-9 in the shots department.
The second period starts with the Drakes putting out Duguay, Gould, and O’Reilly and the Drakes swarm the Moose end but Roland Melanson keeps the Drakes off the board. Andy Brickley feeds Marcel Dionne in front of an empty net and Gord Donnelly slides across for the block to keep the game scoreless. The Drakes fail to dent the scoreboard and own the edge 26-14 in shots but the Moose lead 3-0 in the important department.
The third period starts with the Moose putting the clamps down on the Drakes. With the exception of a Joey Mullen point-blank shot, the Moose control the third period and Jari Kurri almost makes it 4-0 but Glen Hanlon keeps the score 3-0. Randy Gregg skates it out of his D zone and passes to Illka Sinisalo who feeds it to Patrick Sundstrom and the Drakes finally get on the board. The Drakes continue to pour it on and Bobby Gould skates in and gets robbed. The Drakes fail to muster anything the rest of the game and the Moose come away with a 3-1 victory.
Jari Kurri, Paul Maclean, and Roland Melanson are the 3 stars of the game
GAME #4 Don Beaupre gets the call for the Moose against the Drakes but the Drakes look to get on the board early as they dominate the game early on. Beaupre turns away Joe Mullen and Patrick Sundstrom early on until Pat Price pulls down Illka Sinisalo in front of the net for a Drake power play. With the Moose killing the power play, Alain Cote gets stripped at the blue line by Randy Gregg and the puck goes into the corner and bounces out to Darren Veitch who feeds Greg Gilbert in the slot for a 1-0 lead at the 4:34 mark of the first period. Curt Giles takes a really bad penalty for high sticking to put the Drakes on the power play again. The Drakes waste no time as Darren Veitch works the point playing give and go with Marcel Dionne as Joe Mullen puts it into an open net for a 2-0 lead at 6:41 mark. To get the Moose going Eddy Beers and Terry O’Reilly get in a real brew haha at center ice and the momentum shifts as Tom Lysiak misses an open net during a delayed call against Ray Allison. The Moose control the puck as Mike Eaves and Paul Maclean get top scoring opportunities but can’t solve Hanlon. The teams go into the first intermission at 2-0 in favor of the Drakes.
Less than a minute into the second, Jari Kurri sets up Mike Eaves but he shoots it wide of the net where Ron Flockhart picks up the puck on the board and feeds Ray Allison, who sends it cross-ice to Jan Ludvig, then a drop to Rod Langway who then shoots it through a screen and it is deflected by Allison into the goal 3-0 Drakes at the 1:33 mark. The Drakes continue to dominate the Moose and Don Beaupre makes some great saves against Rob Ramage and Greg Gilbert to keep the score at 3-0 which is where it goes to the second intermission.
The 3rd period starts out like the last two and the Drakes extend the lead to 4-0 with a great goal from Terry O’Reilly, assisted by Ron Duguay and Bobby Gould. The only thing left at this point is whether the high-powered Moose would get on the board. Tom Lysiak gets a great feed from Mike Rogers on a 2-1 but Hanlon gloves Lysiak to keep the shutout. The horn sounds and the final is 4-0
The three stars are Glen Hanlon, Joe Mullen, and Ray Allison.
  Split between Dallas & Mackinac Island.

Mackinac Island and Dallas tied 2 games each, and we head back north for game 5.

GAME #5 Scoring starts early when Sinisalo finds Gilbert open and Gilbert makes it 1-0 only 64 seconds into the game. Immediately after the faceoff, Campbell, and O’Reilly drop gloves, benches empty, and the 2 fighters ger 5 minutes each. A little later, Sinisalo roughs Kurri. The resulting PP sees Quinn score off the faceoff, and we are tied at 1. Dallas returns the favor a few minutes later when O’Reilly scores off a faceoff in the Moose zone, and it’s 2-1 Dallas with 7:30 to go. Another O’Reilly penalty gives the Moose a PP chance, and after some nifty passing, Kurri scores on the wraparound to tie it at 2 with 6 minutes to go. Right off the faceoff, it’s Baxter to Dionne to Mullin who catches the Moose looking, and the Drakes are back on top, 3-2. Price and Brickley in a little fight open the ice up. Horn sounds and we refill our beers for period two, 3-2 Drakes.

Faceoff in the Drakes zone finds Kurri who finds an opening and it’s tied at 3 early in the 2nd. Then a repeat of the 1st period, right off the center faceoff, Drakes move into the Moose zone and a Brickley deflection off a Dionne shot puts the Drakes right back on top, 4-3. Everybody feeling chippy now, and right off the center face-off, Dionne and O’Connell get into it. 2 minutes each, and some open ice action. No damage, but soon it’s Langaway and Kurri in a skirmish and more open ice 4-on-4 action. Gregg caught tripping makes it 4 on 3 for the Moose. As we transition to 5 on 4, and finally 5 on 5, the Moose take advantage of the transition, Beers finds an opening and the goal is to make it 4-4 with 13 minutes to go. Moose kill off a Campbell minor. Drakes kill a Baxter minor. Moose kill off a Donnelly minor. Things appear to be settling down as the 2nd period ends tied at 4. Put your seatbelts on.

The action picks up quickly as first Price and Veitch fight. Quickly followed by Beers and Ramage. Only 32 seconds gone in the 3rd. Moose force a turnover, and speed up ice, with Lysiak finding Propp, slap-shot in, and Moose have their first lead of the game, 5-4. Right off the center face-off, Price and Baxter in a fight each get 5 minutes. A few minutes later, Allison and MacLean in a good fight, and off they go for 5. Moose looking to take charge, and just after a zone entry, a nifty pass from Giles finds Kurri open and he converts to push the lead to 2 for the first time in the game. 12 minutes to go. Just seconds later, the Moose turns over the puck trying to exit their zone, and Ramage finds Gilbers, who cuts the lead to 1. 6-5 Moose with 11 minutes to go. Of course, we are not there long, as 2 minutes later, the Moose uses a zone entry to find O’Connell at the point, shoots a rocket into the net, and the Moose back up by 2 with 9 minutes to go. Both coaches now pleading with their squads to play some defense. Another neutral zone turnover finds the Drakes pushing into the Moose zone, and this time it’s Brickley finding Dionne with a path to the goal, and Dionne makes it 7-6, with just over 8 minutes to go. Turnabout is fair play, and just a minute later, the Moose do the same, only its Kurri who finds Eaves open, and now we are at 8-6, seven and a half minutes to go. And for the 3rd time in the game, right off the center face off, the Drakes roar into the Moose zone, this time its Sundstrom deflecting a Gilbert shot. 8-7 Moose with just under 7 to go.

Finally, a period of scoreless play as the clock melts down to 6,5,4,3,2 and the home crowd hopes this avalanche of goals is over. But NO!, The Drakes turn up the pressure dial, and it pays off with a goal by Sinisalo with 90 seconds left. Both teams get a few shots to win in regulation, but nothing goes in, and off to overtime we go.

OVERTIME – Both defenses show up finally, and with a fairly even 9-7 SOG, no penalties, the first 20 minutes of OT melts away, We are still tied at 8 going to double.

2OT – Moose are able to control the puck early, keeping the Drakes from getting a SOG. As the 3rd minute passes, the Moose move up ice, dump into the corner, where an Eaves shot is deflected by MacLean into the back of the net

FINAL Moose 9, Drakes 8 2OT

1st star – Kurri 3G, 5pts
2nd – Gilbert 2G 3pts
3rd – Quinn 1G 2pts

Ramage 4 assists

  A real roller coaster ride of a game. Both teams with leads, and comebacks. Lots of fights. An instant classic.

Back to Dallas for Game 6 on Tuesday with Moose the 3-2 advantage, but Drakes the home ice.

The Moose go to Dallas up 3 games to 2.

GAME #6 Dallas brings it hard in the first period. After the teams dance around a bit, Flockhart and Gould score one minute apart and put the Drakes up 2-0. A Ramsey penalty opens the door for the Moose, and they capitalize a minute later when Beers scores. Now 2-1. But the Moose get sloppy. 2 penalties in the last 10 minutes give the Drakes golden opportunities, and they cash in on both. Sinisalo and Gilbert punish the Moose, and we go to intermission with Dallas up 4-1.

Moose put Melanson in goal to try and salvage this game. He and the defense hold the Drakes at bay. Meanwhile, MacLean finds an open slot and cuts the lead to 2 near halftime. Defenses rule the rest of the period, and we are 4-2 Drakes after 2.

Drakes kill all hope of the comeback with early goals, Duguay and Brickley, in the first 3 minutes of the 3rd period. Down 6-2, the Moose go balls out, 18 SOG in the period, but Hanlon is a brick wall, stopping everything. Dallas fans rejoice, and we will have a game 7.

1st star – Duguay 1G 4pts
2nd – Brickley 1G
3rd – Flockhart 1G

  Game 7 could be a doozy, and Moose will come back with Melanson in goal, versus the equally talented Hanlon. Scheduled for high noon on the Island. Get the horses off the street.
GAME #7 Game 7 – Says it all – Win or go home – Moose v. Drakes – packed Bullwinkle Arena – scalped tickets – Even the Fearless Leader has shown up for this one ….. Commissioner Stray Corrado in the luxury box.

A tense first period sees both teams tentatively check each other out. A few early odd-man rushes by the Moose are thwarted by Hanlon. Adjustments. Only 5 SOG in the first 10 minutes. A slashing penalty by Ramage late is killed. Both goalies go to break with clean sheets.

Adjustments by the Moose work. Cote is the beneficiary of a turnover by Brickley, and passes by Ruskowski and Wilson finds Cote open in close, and he scores. To quote the announcer,” ten ho vykouril jako cigaretu!” …………. or, “He smoked them like a bad cigar. A tripping minor is killed off by the Moose. Shortly after the kill, the Moose take possession into the Drakes zone, and after a series of passes by the 1st line, O’Connell fires a laser beam past Hanlon, and the Moose are up 2-0. A small fight between O’Reilly and Campbell leads to 4 on 4 with no damage. Followed quickly by a small fight between Gould and Lysiak, but this time the open ice lets Kurri find a narrow opening near the net, and Kurri gets his 8th goal of the series to push the lead to 3. The period ends at 3-0 Moose.

3rd period sees the Moose round up the wagons and play some serious defense. Smart defense not exactly, however. Donnelly with a tripping minor 3 minutes in tilts the ice in favor of the Drakes. The Moose PK unit is up to the task however and thwarts all attempts. Period drifts past 10 minutes to go and the crowd starts getting riled up. However, Donnelly strikes again with another stupid roughing penalty. The Drakes get a number of shots on goal, but Melanson mans up and shuts it down. With the penalty killed and only 5 minutes to go, the Drakes turn on the pressure. As shots on goal climb past 15 for the Drakes, worry that the averages will play out and the Drakes will convert. And convert they do ……….. Off a neutral zone faceoff, Brickley finds Mullen in a blind spot for Melanson, and he knocks one in, cutting the lead to 2 with 1:44 to go. Drakes control the ensuing center face-off and pull the goalie. Strong pressure by the Drakes prevents the Moose from clearing the puck multiple times until Dionne finds Mullen near the goal, and he pops one more in. Lead is a terrifying one goal, with 28 seconds left, and the Moose on their heels. Drakes win yet another center faceoff and enter the zone. Shot … save, but then a strong check by Price knocks the puck loose for Terrion to capture and skate away the final seconds. Bedlam …….. handshake line ….. more hockey to come on the Island … long flight home for Dallas.

Final Moose 3, Drakes 2

1st star – Mullen 2G
2nd – Kurri 1G 2pts
3rd – Melanson 36 saves

SERIES SUMMARY Congrats to the Scott Needle and the Dallas Drakes on a great season. Worthy opponents. I learned some more techniques from Scott in our last 3 games via netplay on Hamachi.

Jari Kurri with 8 goals, and 6 assists in 7 games.

On to a rematch of last year with New Castle and Alan Raylesberg