Wolves seal win over Rochester United to remain top in league

Clarkston Varsity Hockey sent a bold message to all challengers to their standing in the OAA Red and the Division 1, ranked No. 2, by dispatching the second place Rochester United last Friday at the Suburban Ice Arena, 3-2.
The victory puts the Wolves two games up on Rochester for the top spot in league action. Clarkston applied the pressure early, keeping RU from a shot on Clarkston goaltender, Calum Hartner, for over eight minutes of the first period.
With 2:22 remaining in the first period, RU forward, Jack Taylor slipped one past Hartner for the only score of the period.
The Wolves had to show their penalty killing abilities four times during the second stanza, successfully turning away RU in three of them. With Clarkston’s Brady Earing serving a minor for hooking, RU’s Owen Farley jumped on a loose puck during a scramble, in front of Hartner, to notch RU their second score.
Being down 2-0 at the end of two periods increased the Wolves resolve to come out strong in the third period by firing a relentless barrage of 32 shots on RU netminder, Kyle Keipper, netting three scores to take and hold the lead to the 3-2 final.
Clarkston’s triple was started by Blake Botterill, from Eric Wade and Trey Damian.
“All season we have always known when the guys have to step up their game and we stressed that tonight,” said Botterill about the mood in the locker room going into the third period.
Less than five minutes later, Botterill scored again on a perfect pass from Ron Wade.
Three minutes later, Wolves junior Owen Croston cemented Clarkston’s lead with an assist from Wade. Hartner finished the night with ten saves.
The next day the Wolves returned home to host the Midland Chemics the next night for Meet the Players night at Detroit Skating Club where fans of all ages were greeted after the game by the Wolves outside the locker room, following the 6-1 win in favor of Clarkston.
The Wolves scored tallied in all three periods, while allowing the Chemic’s just one goal. Wolves forward, Ron Wade took advantage of a power play on a pass from Theo Walker to start the scoring. With just 2:55 remaining in the first period, Owen Croston put on a stick handling show, going the length of the ice to drill the Wolves’ second score.
Croston’s second goal came off an assist from Theo Walker with four minutes remaining in the second.
The final stanza saw three more scores from Devon Collis, Ron Wade and Botterill on assists from brothers George and Theo Walker, Wade and Earing. Wade registered two goals and an assist for the night.
Hartner finished the game with 17 saves in the net.
The Wolves are now 14-1-2 in the 2022-23 campaign, one of the best starts in the history of the program, now in it’s 26th season.
Clarkston plays Flint Powers on Wednesday at Flint Iceland Arena, 6 p.m. They host Canton on Saturday at Detroit Skating Club, 8 p.m.

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