Friday, May 22, 2009

Avoiding the Venom of the Purple Cobras

Last week, the Shockers organization had made an appeal to the NABHL about their game against FW. The same game where the Shockers saw four of their members suspended and the game get called by the referee at a deadlock tie, 5-5. The original ruling was each team was awarded one point to signify the tie but when the Shockers looked into the NABHL rulebook, each team should have been awarded zero points.

The Shockers appealed the ruling and the league did follow suit and awarded (is it awarding if you lose a point?) both teams with zero points. This does not change anything as to where the Shockers placed in the standings but it did affect FW as they tumbled their way into first place of the intermediate playoffs.

Also, along the lines of changes, the Shockers' first playoff game will be moved to Wednesday, May 27th @ 6:30pm instead of the originally slotted 10pm start tonight. The Shockers will take on the speedy Purple Cobras in the first round.

The Shockers still without big rocket, Donald Toohey, in the line-up will have to move the ball quickly and get quality shots on net in order to beat the Cobras. Toohey will make his return in game two against the Cobras, where, hopefully his team will be in a good situation to eliminate the Cobras.

Th Cobras are known to keep the scores low and know how to stay out of the penalty box, the complete opposite case for the Shockers who normally run the scores high and are often serving penalties.

Last time these two teams faced each other was the third game of the season where the Shockers blew a 3-0 lead after the first period but still squeezed by with the win in shootouts. Toohey led the Shockers to that victory walking away with a 4-point night (1G -3A). That means that Wednesday, a new face will have to step up to the plate and deliver for the Shockers.

Despite Toohey being out for already four games, the Shockers did keep the good times rolling as they won 3-out-of-4 games. The only loss coming by the hands of near-perfect Baton Rouge as they managed to beat the Shockers 5-4. During those games, the big pointsmen have been Steve Diabo and Ben Ducharme, however, have received good production from a laundry-list of players.

Although goal-scoring can be ranted about all day, the other main piece of the puzzle is how Giancarlo "Drunken Clam" Capaz will fair in these playoffs. Capaz who kept the Shockers competitive has, however, been on a hot-and-cold basis. Capaz lowered his GAA to 5.00 this season compared to posting a 6.31 last season. Capaz has always been solid in dealing with the pressure of the playoffs in the past so expect good outtings for him, of course, that will also depend on how his defense can cope against the speed of the Cobras.

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