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October 28, 2016
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A great effort from the Wellington Dukes on Friday night in enemy territory fell just short in a 3-1 loss to the Trenton Golden Hawks.


Round one of the Battle of Quinte started out in favour of the visiting Dukes on Mitch Mendonca’s sixth tally of the season. The Thorold native was the beneficiary of some helpful and hard work in behind the Trenton net by Colin Doyle, allowing him to slip a backhander past Trenton goaltender Chris Janzen’s left pad. Carter Allen picked up the secondary assist on the goal, which came at 11:32. The competitive first period between the two East division foes ended in favour of Trenton in terms of shots, at 11-10. However, the Dukes continued to hold onto the lead heading into the intermission break.


It was the Michael Silveri show in the second frame, as the Golden Hawks took a 2-1 lead on the strength of the North Bay product’s two markers. Silveri slid in his first on a rebound off a Liam Morgan shot, with Lucas Brown drawing the second assist at 4:44 of the period. His second, which came with just 2:12 to go in the period, was an absolute rifle over Connor Ryckman’s right shoulder that the Minesing native had little to no chance on. Silveri's second goal of the game and 10th of the season was assisted by Morgan and Brandon Marinelli. It also turned out to be the game-winner. A spirited fight in this period between Wellington's Keegan Ferguson and Trenton's Rex Moe punctuated the high-intensity game. Shots favoured the home side 14-8.


The Dukes had their opportunities in the third, with both Evan Foley and Dean Kiriacou missing goals by inches on shots off the post and crossbar respectively. Kiriacou’s chance in particular came within the last five minutes of the game and could potentially have been a momentum-shifting goal, but alas, the referees upheld their initial call on the ice as no goal. Liam Morgan put the icing on the cake with an empty net goal with just 10 seconds remaining. Silveri and Marinelli assisted on Morgan’s 14th of the season. Trenton outshot Wellington 15-12 in the final frame for a 40-30 total shot advantage over the Dukes. Ryckman was brilliant again in the cage, making 37 saves in a losing cause for the Dukes, while Brayden Stortz saw his 17-game point streak to begin the season snapped.


A wonderfully played game, with good pace and a good atmosphere inside the Duncan McDonald Memorial Gardens highlighted what is sure to be another great season series between these two teams. The Dudley Hewitt Cup hosts now sit five points up on the Dukes for first in the East division with a 15-3-0-0 record. The Dukes fall to 12-5-1-0 with the defeat.


The Dukes will make a short turnaround and get set to face the Oakville Blades, who are tied with the St. Mike’s Buzzers atop the South division standings. Battle of Quinte Round Two will go on Nov. 25, when the two teams reignite their rivalry in Wellington.


Story by Brock Ormond

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