Hawel hattrick paces X-Men to win over Tigers

Photo credit Bryan Kennedy
Photo credit Bryan Kennedy

ANTIGONISH, NS - A hattrick from player of the game Liam Hawel (Arnprior, ON) helped the STFX X-Men win a high scoring 6-5 game against the Dalhousie Tigers in AUS men's hockey action on Wednesday night at the Charles V Keating Centre.

A three goal first period kicked off the night for the X-Men, with Hawel firing a high wrister into the top corner, off passes from Mark Woolley (St. Thomas, ON) and Clark Webster (Kensington, PE). Dalhousie's Jack Harper (Guelph, ON) tied the game three minutes later, stepping into a slapshot from the point off an assist from Ethan O'Rourke (Prince George, BC).

STFX retook the lead three minutes after that, with second star of the game Zack Trott (Mulmur, ON) banging home a Hawel rebound, with Matthew Struthers (Milton, ON) picking up the second assist. They made it a three-goal game three minutes later while on the powerplay, with Declan Smith (Antigonish, NS) scoring from in close, off a pass from Trott and Charlie Callaghan (Toronto, ON).

Hawel opened the second period scoring 27 seconds into the stanza, picking up a pass from Josh Nelson (Lockport, IL) in the neutral zone, weaving his way to the net, and going top shelf. The home team found the back of the next again seven minutes later, with Struthers connecting with a high shot while on a two-on-one with Hawel.

Dalhousie stayed in the game, with Derek Gentile (Sydney, NS) making it a three-goal game on the same man-advantage, with assists going to Barrett Kerwin (Barrie, ON) and Dawson Stairs (Fredericton, NB).

The scoring kept coming, with Hawel completing his hattrick with a one-time on the powerplay just over two minutes later, with Trott and Smith picking up the assists. The Tigers replied a minute later, with third star Evan MacKinnon (Beaverbank, NS) tucking one home from in close, with Christopher McQuaid (Charlottetown, PE) and Gentile getting the helpers.

Shots at the end of the second period were 37-17 in favour of STFX.

The Tigers came out with some jump in the third, with MacKinnon scoring short-side on a two-on-one after picking up the puck in his own end from Jackson van der Leest (Kelowna, BC) with five minutes gone. Ethan Martini (Trail, BC) made it a one goal game with a slapshot from the point off passes from O'Rourke and Stairs with just under four minutes left to play.

The Tigers pulled their goalie in hopes of finding the tying goal but STFX held on for the win. Shots at the end of the game were 46-23 in favour of STFX.

Joseph Raaymakers (Chatham, ON) made 18 saves while picking up his 10th win of the season, while Nicholas Chenard (Tecumseh, ON) had 40 saves on the night while getting tagged with the loss.

The STFX X-Men next hit the ice on Friday night, January 26, when they will visit the UPEI Panthers. The Tigers are also on the road to Charlottetown this weekend for a matchup with the Panthers on Saturday, January 27.   


Recap courtesy Matt Draper, STFX Athletics