Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Shorthanded Nighthawks keep perfect season alive

The Nighthawks won yet again despite missing their starting goalie, defensive phenom Travis Feravich, and Ariel Dews. The team responded by bringing up Jordan "Popapalooza" Hendricks from the minors, and putting Andrew Willis on defense for the second straight week. This worked well again for the Nighthawks who improved to 3-0 on the season, and got their first win against Los Hooligans. This 9-5 win was a hard-fought battle. At the half it was 4-1 thanks to two goals by Sherif and another one by Veronica. Both the number one offense and defense in the league seemed to slow down a little as before too long the score was 6-5 in favor of the Nighthawks. Sherif scored his fifth goal of the night with a little over 10 minutes left in the game. Another goal by Leanne and shutdown defense of the Nighthawks iced the game. Mike Roos won his first game in goal as he stopped 66 percent of the shots he faced. He will have to play just as well next week as Luke Bahrou will miss his second game in a row. On the bright side, Travis Feravich will be back to help out the number one defense in the league.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Nighthawks offense continues

The Nighthawks added 12 more points this game as they finally beat the Ball Busters 12-3. This game has really given the Nighthawks confidence for the rest of this season. The Ball Busters have been a thorn in the side of the Nighthawks for the last few seasons, and this huge victory has made them believe that they can go really far this year. The girls once again helped to boost the Nighthawks to victory. A close game through most of the first half finally broke open when Leanne scored a goal, and this was followed 37 seconds later with a goal by Ariel. The Nighthawks went into the half up 6-1. Saxon Feravich made sure that his team knew not to let up because this team is one that has the offensive power to come back. There was no such let up this game as Abby added two more goals and both John and Sherif had one for a total of 12. This was the first game for first round pick Brooke Rodwell, who impressed with a +2 and one assist. The main thing was her aggressiveness on defense that impressed the coaches the most. Andrew Willis started on defense with Saxon and this duo combined for a +22, six assists, and seven shots in the absence of Travis. Luke Bahoru picked up player of the week honors with his three goals against (one on a penalty shot) and an 80 save percentage. This is a bittersweet victory though as Luke injured his ribs in the game and is out indefinitely. Next week Mike will step back into the goal, and Andrew will still play defense. This will be challenge for the Nighthawks , but if they can continue playing the way they have been with 33 goals, 7 goals against, and a +26 goal differential (all of which are first in the league) they have a chance. Also, Saxon will have to continue his amazing plus/minus ability, which as of right now is tied for a career high after just two games. It is gut check time for the Nighthawks and it will take place next game.

Nighthawks start season in unfamiliar territory

The Nighthawks started their new season in completely different fashion then they have been accustomed to the last few seasons, with a win. The off-season proved to be the big difference for the Nighthawks. They were able to re-sign Leanne, Carissa, and defensive superstar Travis Feravich. Also, they decided to bring up Ariel and Abby from the minors, and that decision made an impact right away. The Nighthawks went into the first game with a ton of confidence and won the game 21-4 over the Cowboy Killers, a new expansion team this year. The first minute was not good for the Nighthawks as they seemed to be a little out of sync. It didn't help that Sherif didn't show up on time either, and all of this ended with a quick goal for the Cowboy Killers. The experience of the Nighthawks proved to be an asset because they did not let this setback get them down. Andrew Willis came right back and scored a goal to tie up the game, and from there the Nighthawks didn't look back. This game showed off all of the Nighthawks' abilities, and each person did what they were picked for this team to do. The main deference with this game from other ones is the ability of the girls to score, and that is something they hope will continue all season. Sherif had two goals in this game, and Andrew had one, but that was it for the guys scoring. The girls really brought out their ability to score. Veronica had three, Leanne had two, Abby had two, Ariel had one, and Carissa had one. With nine girl goals it is almost impossible to lose, especially when you have Luke Bahrou in goal. He has now won four of his last five games. Saxon Feravich recorded one of his best games ever. He had a career high in assists with five, and in plus/minus with a +11. After the game he said that this was the team he was hoping to have. "We have come a long way, and grown together as a team. This is the team everyone wants to have," Saxon said. This game was not all good news though as it was later found out that Travis Feravich broke his toe, and he will be out for at least two weeks. His +9 and four assists will be missed, but Andrew Willis will try to fill the void as best he can next week as the Nighthawks look to continue their offensive explosion.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Nighthawks win series with victory

The Nighthawks won the tiebreaker game 10-7 against Here For The Beer on Thursday. This marks the first series win for the franchise, and a look ahead of some great things to come. Player of the week, Leanne Mitchell, scored a goal and added an assist in this game. That gives her three goals in her last four games. Andrew Willis was also able to break out of his scoring slump, and with the team having finally figured out their lines the team will expect more of this from him next season. Luke Bahrou played another great game in net, and the team has officially made him the starter for next season. The Nighthawks saw a lot of improvements this game. The main one that stuck out was Sherif coming back to play some defense when he was needed. As a pure offensive player Sherif has not played much defense, but a team meeting circled around team defense helped Sherif to play more defensively. The Nighthawks finished the season 3-1 for a final record 0f 3-5. This is not as bad as it seems as four of those five losses were by only one goal. The Nighthawks will make a few roster changes in the off-season, but it seems they finally have the team they want to make a run at the top. Expect great things from them.

Series tied, one game left

With a 1-0 series lead against Here For The Beer, the Nighthawks came into this game looking for the sweep. This was not to be however as the team fell 6-5. The Nighthawks were in a hole 5-2 until halfway through the second half when Sherif scored. The next goal was scored by Travis as he had his first career goal, and the celebration was priceless. That was as close as the Nighthawks would get though as a late goal sealed it for Here For The Beer. The real story is the rivalry that has seemingly developed between these two teams. It seems the Nighthawks can't make friends with any of the teams, but this one got more physical than ones in the past. After last week when Billy was punched, the physicality has only increased. There were quite a few injuries that occurred in this game including Carissa who had to be carried off the field. Andrew Willis and the Feravich brothers were right in the middle of this trying to make an impact for the team. Andrew caused a lot of fouls, either for or against his team, but the team knows that Andrew is a tough player and that is his style of play. As for the Feravich brothers, they made it very hard for the other team to enter their zone, and get quality shots off. This will set up for a great deciding game next week.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Nighthawks win two in a row

It took the Nighthawks two less games to win the same amount of games that they won all of last year. The story was once again the goaltending of Luke Bahrou. This time it was a little harder with the absence of top defender Saxon Feravich, but the team still won 7-6 against Here for the Beer. Rachel Willis was also missing from the game, and this caused Jordan Hendricks to be called up from the minors for one game. He made a great impact in his first major league game with a +3 in the stats column. John came back from his injury to test out his legs. He recorded two assists, and it is uncertain if the team will play him in the last two games. Also Emily played forward for the first time this year, and she came up with an assist. Sherif was named player of the week with his goal and two assists. Veronica also seems to be on a roll as she recorded her second five point game in a row, with two of them being goals. Leanne added the last goal that ended up being the game winner after a great blocked shot and pass from the team's acting A+ captain Andrew Willis. Star defenseman Travis Feravich also had a solid game defensively. The team seems to finally be on the same page, and unless some injuries occur the entire team should be healthy for the last two games. "I think finishing the season with four wins in a row would be an amazing accomplishment for our team, especially with the injuries and problems our team has had the first couple of games," said captain Saxon Feravich. One thing the team has been missing is scoring from Andrew Willis. He has not scored in the last two games after scoring four goals in two games. He has been playing more defensively especially since Saxon was gone last game, but his secondary scoring would be beneficial for the team. With two games left the team will probably shift people around to see where they fit for next season.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Nighthawks found goalie for rest of season

With the Nighthawks struggling to keep their team together, and their team not showing up every week it has been hard for this team to find ways to make it through the season. This week there was no Emily yet again, and back-up goalie Mike could not make it for personal reasons. To counter this the team decided to put their second round pick from last year, Luke Bahrou, back in goal. Luke lost his starting job in the first game of last season, and the team has yet to find a permanent goalie since, but it seems the team will go back to Luke, at least for the rest of the year. Behind the great goaltending of Bahrou and five points from Veronica the Nighthawks got their first win of the season, and still have a chance at .500. The final score of the game was 10-5 against Crossfire, a team they lost to earlier in the season. Other goal scorers were Carissa, Rachel, and Sherif (2). The defense of Saxon and Travis continued their dominance as they combined for a +10 in the game and had three points. The real story of the game was Luke Bahrou and his excellent goaltending. He made a number of great saves, and stepped in when the team needed him the most. With the team mainly focused on rebuilding for the next season it seems that having a set goalie for the last three games will allow them not to worry about that position from week to week. Captain Saxon Feravich said, "Now that we have our goalie set for the rest of the year I am hoping that we can get to .500 as a team, and use that momentum for the next season."

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Nighthawks team falling apart

The Nighthawks continued their disappointing season with a loss to their arch rivals Los Hooligans. The 9-8 loss gives them four on the year, and a third by only one goal. This game featured lazy goaltending for some of the game, missing players (again), and stars missing on the stat sheet. Andrew Willis was quoted as saying this is the worst game he has had this year. Travis Feravich missed his second game this year because of injuries, and his presence could have helped the team. There were some positives in this game though. This game featured goals by Leanne and Carissa, and if the Nighthawks want to be an elite team, like they feel they are, then these are the secondary scorers that need to step up. Sherif added the other four goals, and lastly Luke Bahrou, who came to the team as their supposed starting goalie, has found a new position, defense. The team's main problem doesn't seem to be the play on the field, but instead it seems to be their off the field issues. Complainants about playing time have made the team worry more about that then winning, and injuries have plagued this team throughout the year. So much is uncertain for this team, and there are many people who wonder if they can salvage a .500 season. Also, with these problems many players are planning to leave the team. Of the 14 players on the team, seven players contracts expire at the end of the year, the most important of all is Travis Feravich. Captain Saxon Feravich had this to say about the situation, "It is no secret that our team is having problems with playing time. Our number one priority will be to re-sign Travis, and after it is up to the GM." There have been reports that at least five players will test free agency, and at least one player will be pulled up from the minors. The General Manager said that there is a chance this upcoming season will be forfeited if they can't figure things out. Although the team has yet to win, and personal problems threaten the future of this team, there are some positives. Some of the players are on pace to meet their preseason goals. Andrew Willis is second on the team in goals right now, but only has six points. Carissa Coon has kept up the physical play. Rachel Willis already has her six points and also a goal. Saxon Feravich has six points, and leads the team with a +10. Sherif Hassanien has 13 points with 10 goals. Travis Feravich has a point per game, but has only played two games, and he second on the team in plus/minus. Also, look for some season records to be broken, Sherif needs six goals in four games to set a season record in goals, and Saxon needs to be a +9 to beat his previous season record of plus/minus.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Finals Picks

So the Stanley Cup playoffs are right around the corner and everyone is anxiously waiting to see how far their team will go. Will there be a Cinderella story this year, or will we have the same finals we have had the past two seasons?

I feel that this year the Finals will be much different. In the West I see the Red Wings Central Division rivals, the Chicago Blackhawks, making it to the Finals this year. In 2009 the Blackhawks made it to the Western Conference Finals before being bounced by their rivals the Red Wings, but now, with the addition of Marian Hossa, I feel they have enough fire power to get over that final hump. The real question will be their goaltending. Can Antti Niemi be good enough to get them to the finals? I believe he can.

In the East, I believe that the Philadelphia Flyers will make it to the promised land. They have a mixture of youth and veterans on their team. The addition of Chris Pronger has made a huge impact, and when you have a top tier defenseman on your blur line you can go far in the postseason. The problem for them coming from the East is the finals go through Pittsburgh. Facing them will be no easy task. I feel that they have enough talent all around to give Pittsburgh fits and make their way into the Finals.

NHL playoff preview

The playoffs start today in the NHL and the match-ups are as follows:

Western Conference
#1 San Jose Sharks vs. #8 Colorado Avalanche
#2 Chicago Blackhawks vs. #7 Nashville Predators
#3 Vancouver Canucks vs. #6 Los Angeles Kings
#4 Phoenix Coyotes vs. #5 Detroit Red Wings

Eastern Conference
#1 Washington Capitals vs. #8 Montreal Canadians
#2 New Jersey Devils vs. #7 Philadelphia Flyers
#3 Buffalo Sabers vs. #6 Boston Bruins
#4 Pittsburgh Penguins vs. #5 Ottawa Senators

In the Western Conference there are only three starting goalies that have any playoff experience, and of those three Nabokov has more playoff wins than the other two goalies have participated in playoff games. The Blackhawks have Hossa this year so they could easily make it to the Finals just to lose. The Kings are my sleeper team in the West. Although they finished the year 2-0-3, with all five going to at least overtime, they beat the Canucks 8-3 on April 1st. The Wings may have the easiest trip to the Western Conference Finals, provided all the top seeds win. The Wings face a team in the first round with little playoff experience and a their second round opponent would be San Jose, a team they are 3-0-1 against this year. Also, let us not forget they are the hottest team in the league since the Olympic break, including 8-1-1 their last 10 games. If Howard can continue his Calder-like performance and the veteran players play like they should, then there is no reason to think that the road to the Stanley Cup won't go through Detroit.

In the East it is a different story. This is the second year in a row the Penguins have finished fourth in the East. That isn't a bad thing for them since they won the cup last year. They did not finish the season strong though. Their record was a 5-4-2 with four of those wins coming against teams that are not in the playoffs. A possible first round upset is the Flyers over the Devils. The season battle between these two was 5-1 in favor of Philadelphia. Emery and Leighton won both their games against the Devils, and Boucher went 1-1. The real question is: is this the year for Ovechkin? With Backstrom becoming a restricted free agent at the end of the year, it is unknown where he will end up. The main problem will be the goaltending, but with the number one scoring offense in the league the Capitals have a legitimate chance this year. One thing I do know is the playoffs should be great.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Nighthawks comeback falls short

The Nighthawks struggles continued this week as the team feel just short of an amazing comeback, 9-8. The team came into the game expecting to have their full roster, but in pre-game warm ups a blast from Mike Roos caught Emily in the ribs and she was taken back for x-rays. She missed the first half. Because of this Mike got his third start in a row. The game started off highly contested, and when Saxon came off the field the score was tied at zero. A penalty kick from Andrew Willis gave the Nighthawks the lead, but Stormin Normin came right back with a goal less than a minute later. They followed that up with five more and went into the half leading 6-1. Emily came back for the second half, and the Nighthawks, trying to get back in the game, put in Sherif, Willis, Veronica, and the Feravich brothers. After some bench complaining Saxon and Travis left for Billy and Rachel. The next time Saxon and Travis saw the field the score was 8-1 with 15 minutes left. It was right then that the comeback started. Travis was quoted as saying, "Give me the ball. I'm going to try to score." He got the ball took it down and came close to scoring his first career goal. Stormin Normin cleared it down and a pass from Saxon to Sherif led to a goal and an 8-2 deficit. Veronica added another goal before Stormin Normin stopped the bleeding with a goal after Travis slipped. Andrew added his second of the night, and Sherif had three more (all assisted by Veronica), but it was not enough to complete the comeback and therefore the Nighthawks, despite the six points from Veronica, have fallen to 0-3 on the year. Another thing to look for in the coming weeks is the team's ability to co-exist. There are rumors that some of the players are upset with playing time. Captain Saxon Feravich had this to say, "I am not concerned about my team. They can complain to me all they want, but the best players will play when we need them. If they don't like it they won't be on the team next year. I took Travis out when we were down by four to put Andrew in. Travis didn't want to leave, but he did because he knows Andrew is better offensively." This comment makes it sound like there will be some changes at the end of the year if the season isn't turned around.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Depleted roster leads to second loss

The Nighthawks came into this season expecting a turn around year, but they have yet to see what their full team could do. This is the second week in a row the Nighthawks have been missing some key players. Travis missed this game due to family issues, Veronica was out of the game with a concussion and Emily missed the game again due to an existing illness. This team has not had their full roster and for two weeks in a row has had trouble adjusting their offense. The game was the second overall meeting between the Nighthawks and the Ball Busters. Last season it was a 9-2 Nighthawks loss, and this year, even without their full roster, it was an 8-3 loss. This game has showed the overall improvement of the Nighthawks as a team. It was a defensive battle in the first half as Andrew Willis scored the only goal. In the second half the depleted roster started to have an effect on the Nighthawks. It wasn't long before the Nighthawks were behind in the game and trying to find a way back in, but without any consistent offense and no secondary scoring the Nighthawks eventually lost the game. Andrew Willis did have his first career multi-goal game even while playing with a bad knee. This Olympic break will prove to be helpful for the Nighthawks as they look to make a run at first this year. Many injuries that this team has faced can be healed. Veronica has a concussion, Sherif has a nagging ankle injury, Emily will try to recover from her illness, Luke has a groin injury, and Andrew Willis has been asked by Captain Saxon Feravich not to participate in the games over this break in order to help heal his knee. After the break the Nighthawks will look to attack with their full roster.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Nighthawks collapse leaves them 0-1

The Nighthawks looked to start the season off on the right foot against Crossfire. They felt that with a full roster they would be able to avenge their late season loss to them last year, but this was not to be the case. First off both Beatrice and Kaitlin missed this game due to injuries in practice, Carissa could not make the game either for undisclosed reasons, and starting goaltender Emily Theodore came down with an illness and was unable to attend. Mike Roos started in goal for the game, and his efforts earned him player of the week awards. Despite the depleted roster, the Nighthawks jumped out to a 6-0 lead thanks to goals by Rachel Willis, Abby Cannon, and Sherif Hassanien (2), and the team looked ready to roll for the new season. It wasn't until there was three minutes to go in the first half that the tide started to turn. Crossfire ended the first half on a 5-1 run, and they were only down two at the half. The Nighthawks collapse continued in the second half. There was a ray of hope when John Mosley decided to play despite his injury, but alas it was too little too late and the final score was 8-7 Crossfire. This debacle is just the latest for the Nighthawks, going back to last season they are now 2-5 when leading at the half. Captain Saxon Feravich had this to say after the game, "We need to figure out what is going wrong. I don't know if we just go up by so much that our team stops caring, or if we just run out of gas. Either way this can't keep happening." When asked about how this can be changed Saxon replied by saying he had no idea on how to motivate everyone. Veronica, who had three goals last week, was non-existent in this game, and the team needs her to step up if they are going to have a chance of winning this season. The next game will be a real test for the Nighthawks as they face the Ball Busters. This will be the first meeting between these two teams since the Nighthawks finally figured out their roster.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Nighthawks looking for turn-around year

The Nighthawks are coming off a 2-6 season last year, but the expectations as a team are very high. All of the players are returning this year except for John Mosley who was placed on IR for the year after getting injured in the final game of last season. The big signing this offseason was Veronica Livingstone. This is a huge signing for the Nighthawks, especially since she had four goals in two games. When Captain Saxon Feravich was asked about how he felt the team would do this year he said, "Our whole team is coming back with a year of experience, and after looking at our division I will be shocked if we don't win it this year." Other news for the Nighthawks has to do with Sherif Hassanien, who was upset about the money in his contract. After some debating he decided to sign a contract extension with the team. He had this to say afterward, "Now that you guys are comfortable with me I am going to take my play to the next level." This is good news for the Nighthawks because an uncomfortable Sherif had 12 goals last season. The season expectations are high this year as Saxon said a .500 record would be a disappoinment.

Player Expectations:
Andrew Willis- Finish year with 16 points, and third on the team in goals.

Beatrice Hilado- 10 points and two of them goals.

Carissa Coon- Keep up the physical play.

Emily Theodore- Have five wins.

Kaitlin Cooper- 10 points and two of them goals.

Leanne Mitchell- 10 points for the year.

Luke Bahrou- Finish year with 16 points, and fourth on the team in goals.

Mike Roos- Try to go three full games without getting injured, and +5.

Rachel Willis- Six points and a couple goals.

Saxon Feravich- Try to get a point per game, lead the team in plus/minus, and a goal would be nice.

Sherif Hassanien- He has to be the new points leader of this team with John on IR. A 30 point year is expected.

Travis Feravich- Try to get a point per game, second on the team in plus/minus, and a few of his great dances, and a goal would be the greatest thing ever.

Veronica Livingstone- She had four goals in two games, but 16 goals may be too much. Sherif had 12 goals last year, and now Veroinca needs to be the secondary scorer. 12 goals will be 24 points on the board so that would be good.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Nighthawks finish season on high note

The Nighthawks finished their season with a victory, 17-8 over Here For The Beer. This game was definitely a turning point for the team as they are looking toward the future. The team has to feel especially confidant because this win came without defenseman anchor Travis Feravich. Veronica, who was picked up last week, had three goals, and in just two games finished with a total of four goals which was good enough for fourth on the team. Sherif Hassanien also had three goals to finish second on the team with 12. The first half began with the typical dominance we have come to expect from the Nighthawks, the team was just out-running everyone and it looked like this would be an easy win for the Nighthawks. It wasn't until there was under a minute left that Beatrice Hilado, who was claimed off waivers by Here For The Beer then re-signed by the Nighthawks in free agency, scored to pull her team within 3. Fans were nervous that there would be another second half collapse, but no such thing happened as the Nighthawks buckled down, and finished their rout. This game was truly a team effort as it seemed everyone was on the score sheet. Rachel Willis had her first goal, the dynamic duo of Luke Bahrou and Andrew Willis each had a goal, Leanne and Carissa each had a pair of assists, and Saxon once again moved permanently to defense only to finish with a +11 for the game. The only down side to this game was the fact that leading goal scorer, John Mosley, injured his leg and could be out all of next year as well. This will be a devastating loss for the Nighthawks, especially if they cannot re-sign Veronica for the upcoming season. While the season as a whole was not what the Nighthawks were expecting they definitely have a lot to look forward to next season, and this young team will be a force in the league soon.

Shorthanded Nighthawks lose close one

The Nighthawks fought valiantly again but had a similar result as the usual, a loss. Despite the fact that the Nighthawks were missing six regulars including their top two scores in John Mosley and Sherif Hassanien, they were also missing arguably their top defenseman in Saxon Feravich, and Leanne Mitchell, Carissa Coon, and Luke Bahrou, the final score was 9-4 with the game going to Crossfire. This loss seemed inevitable so it can not be put on the shoulders of the players that did attend. The game started off poorly for the Nighthawks as a short lob goal was scored by a female opponent and was out of reach of goaltender Arman, who was picked up for one game, and the General Manger had nothing to do with this. Other acquisitions for this game were Conor Milroy an Veronica Livingstone. After a bit of a sluggish start, the team had easily their best defensive game of the season with up and coming defensive stars Andrew Willis and Travis Feravich. Travis showed a chip off the old block of his brother with strong defensive play and Willis proved he is a top defenseman for any team in the league. Willis also added offense on with a goal and also drew 2 huge penalties in which Matt Roos capitalized on one. The defensive pair also both played 50 of 55 minutes taking only a 5 min break at the half. In addition to the defense there were some other positive sign for this young team. Veronica Livingstone had a goal, and was signed for the next session. They have a solid number one goaltender in Emily Theodore, and the main defensive core will return next year. There is however, a rumor that both John and Sherif might not return next season. Clearly the priority this off-season will be to resign both of these superstars.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Nighthawks will finish season below .500 with loss

The Nighthawks disappointing season continued with a 15-9 loss this past Thursday. Although the score looks bad, this does tell the whole story of the game. The Nighthawks played their usual first half and had a 4-2 lead. They fell apart in the second half, and it all started when Emily injured her wrist after stopping a shot. She was pulled for Mike Roos who let in five goals on six shots (three by girls). Emily decided to come back in and play through the pain, but she was not the same out there, and at that point the game was lost. John Mosley struggled this and said, "sometimes you have those bad games, and there is nothing you can do." There were some positives from this game, and one of them was Sherif, who took over in the second half and seemed to score every time he touched the ball. When asked after the game why he didn't do that more he said, "I didn't want to be a ball hog." The team later confirmed that they didn't care. Another positive was the defensive strength of Andrew Willis. He is becoming a better midfielder, and the team could really use that. This next game will be interesting as a number of minor league players will be brought up to take the place of a few players, including team captain Saxon Feravich, who will miss the game due to an undisclosed injury.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Nighthawks get big win over arch rivals

It has finally happened, the Nighthawks have won their first game of the season. It could not have come against a better team either, their arch rival Stormin Normin. The Nighthawks suffered a heartbreaking loss last week, and many felt that would carry over into this game, but it did not. The Nighthawks had a 5-2 lead at the half, and they coasted to victory 6-5. The team definitely learned from last week's loss , and made sure to play defense to secure the win. Along with the win, there were a lot of changes that the team made this week. First off, they put Emily in goal. She did very well stopping five shots, and posting the best GAA for a game this year. It seems the Nighthawks have found their goalie. Also, another player was picked up for the game, Sherif, who had five points that game, and was a huge asset to the team. The Nighthawks started the game with two quick goals by Sherif and picking up their physical game. This type of play led to a confrontation when Andrew Willis hit a player into the wall, and he took exception to that. They were assessed matching minors, but Andrew, along with the other two captains, made sure that the players knew they were here to play and not get pushed around. After Andrew got out of the box he responded by giving Luke Bahrou a great pass for the goal, and adding a goal later in that game. The other two goals were scored by John Mosley. Travis Feravich also added two assists. This team has finally found the recipe for winning, and we will see how that works out for them in the upcoming games.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Nighthawks have best game, same result

The Nighthawks looked like the team we thought they could be at the beginning of the year. They played their best game of the year by far, but fell just short 8-7. The Nighthawks looked unstoppable in the first half as they jumped out to a 5-0 lead. Goals were scored by John Mosley (2), Saxon Feravich, Andrew Willis, and Luke Bahrou. Mike Roos had an amazing game in net, making some unbelievable saves. His great goalkeeping was a huge boost for this team. Los Hooligans scored with under 30 seconds to go in the half, and that seemed to be the momentum changer. In the second half, the Nighthawks were outscored 7-2 (goals by John Mosley and returning Canadian Conor Milroy). The 1-3-1 style the Nighthawks switched to this game seemed to work. It is a new defense so it will get better in the games to come. The one thing they need to watch for is the back-door cuts, and rebounds. That is how a number of goals were scored from for Los Hooligans. Saxon said he was happy with his team's performance, but in the same regard disappointed with the loss. "We seem to finally have a plan to play this game, I just hope next week the ball bounces are way," Saxon said. The Nighthawks showed a lot of improvement in this game, and first the first time all season they were having fun playing. We will see if they can keep confidence for the game next week.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Nighthawks lose again

The Nighthawks had their worst outing of the year last Thursday when they lost 12-2 . The team that was favored to be at the top of the league this session is bleeding. They have no wins this year, and thing aren't looking any better for this team. When asked about the struggles this year, captain Saxon Feravich said, "I have no idea what is going on. We look good for the first five minutes and then we just lose it. By the end the game no one really cares anymore." So the question for this Nighthawks team is how can they keep up the intensity for a whole 50 minutes? Saxon has said he is going to start captaining this week, and there will be some line-up changes made. The Nighthawks also have some questions heading into tonight's game. Travis Feravich, the A+ Captain, my not make it to the game because of a curfew, and the same is true for Rachel Willis. Also, Andrew Willis is rehabbing an injury that has him listed as questionable for the game, and will probably affect his playing time if he goes. There is a silver lining though, the Nighthawks all-time assist leader and save percentage leader Conor Milroy is rumored to be at the game. He might provide some motivation. Regardless of what players show up the Nighthawks need to figure out this game and their team or they will be on their way to an imperfect season.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Nighthawks fall to 0-2

The Nighthawks struggled against Los Hooligans, and followed suit with last week's result, a loss. As a whole the team looked better than they did last week. The problem seems to exist in the goal. Matt Roos started tonight and gave up 7 goals. Once Mike took over in net nothing got past him, but the Nighthawks were still on the losing end 7-4. Mike may be the answer in goal, but he will not be on time to most games so the team will have to make due without him. As far as the offense goes, the Nighthawks dominated in time of possession but they failed to capitalize. It seems a few practices will get this team flowing on offense. Also, if Kaitlin remembered to show her ideas before the game they might have been more prepared. Anyway, the physicality was still present in the Nighthawks as Andrew Willis had only three fouls, but also had a 10-minute penalty (there are rumors that he lost the "A" but it isn't true). The return of Travis was big morale boost for this team, but trying to shake off the rust left him with a low amount of playing time and a -1 on the night. John Mosley came to play as he had two goals and sits with a team leading three. Leanne added the other 2-point goal. The team has a lot of positives, and a practice will get them ready for their next game.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Saturday's NHL picks

Game: Ottawa at Boston
Summary: The Senators come into today tied for the longest active win streak right now at five
games. During this span they have outscored their opponents 18-6, including a 5-1 victory over the Bruins. But before this winning streak, the Senators had lost five in a row, including a 4-1 loss to Boston. As for Boston, they have lost three in a row and find themselves slipping in the Eastern Conference.
Winner: Boston. I feel Boston wins this game and rights the ship, besides Ottawa has to lose sometime.

Game: Carolina at Philadelphia
Summary: The Hurricanes are sitting in last place in the league right now, while Flyers are in ninth in the Eastern Conference, just one point out of the playoffs.
Winner: Philadelphia. If the Flyers want to be a playoff team the have to win the games they should win, this a game they should win.

Game: New York Rangers at Montreal
Summary: The Rangers offense was non-existent against Philadelphia after scoring 14 goals in two games previous to that. As for Montreal, they are in tenth in the Eastern Conference and just one win from being the playoff picture.
Winner: Montreal. I feel that the Rangers will be looking ahead to their Monday night showdown with the Penguins, and this gives Montreal the edge.

Game: New Jersey at New York Islanders
Summary: New Jersey is still in first in their division despite losing four their last five games. They are facing an Islanders team that has won five of their last six, and hasn't lost at home since December 27.
Winner: New York Islanders.
The Islanders are on a roll right now; recording shutouts against the Red Wings and these same Devils. By the way, their one loss was against the Penguins.

Game: Phoenix at Washington
Summary: The Coyotes have been one of the biggest surprises this season. At this point they are fourth in the Western Conference. Now they have to go to Washington and play the Capitals, who have won five in a row. They also have the best home record in the Eastern Conference.
Winner: Washington. Washington has won eight of ten since entering the New Year, and it will take a lot to slow them down.

Game: Toronto at Florida
Summary: This is a battle between two teams that each have two game losing streaks. Florida has has the harder of the games, and if they can put together a couple of wins they will be right in the thick of things for the playoffs.
Winner: Florida. If Florida wants to make a push for the playoffs they need to win this game because their next couple of games won't be very easy.

Game: Los Angeles at Detroit
Summary: This is a seven vs. eight match-up in the Western Conference. The Kings come into this game winning three of their last four games. As for the Red Wings, they have only won two of their last five, but they got a point in two of those three losses. The last time these two teams met it was a 2-1 Red Wings win in L.A.
Winner: Detroit. The Red Wings have played some tough games lately and the score just hasn't come out in their favor. I'm sure they will be ready for this game, and pull out a win.

Game: Atlanta at Tampa Bay
Summary: Although Atlanta and Tampa Bay are sitting in 11th and 13th place respectively, they are still in the playoff hunt in the Eastern Conference. A win tonight for either of these team will help them out.
Winner: Tampa Bay. I feel that being home gives Tampa the edge in this game.

Game: Anaheim at St. Louis
Summary: Both these teams have been playing very well lately. The Blues have won five of their last seven games, and the Ducks have won seven of their last nine. The Ducks have a terrible road record, but the Blues home record is worse.
Winner: Anaheim. The Ducks have been playing with a lot of confidence. In their last nine games they have beaten tough teams like Chicago, Nashville, and Detroit.

Game: Columbus at Minnesota
Summary: Columbus is coming off a win against Boston, and Minnesota has lost four games in a row. Minnesota has a good record at home, while the Blue Jackets are below .500 on the road.
Winner: Minnesota. Minnesota needs to get some confidence before Detroit comes back to town on Wednesday.

Game: Chicago at Vancouver
Summary: Chicago has won four of their last five games, and are right in the the middle of an eight game road trip. This road trip has nothing on the Canucks, who have to start a 14 game road trip at the end of the month. This is a big problem especially since the Canucks have a losing record on the road.
Winner: Chicago. I feel that the long road trip will be looming over the head of the Canucks. Besides, the Blackhawks are 3 and 1 on their current road trip.

Game: Buffalo at San Jose
Summary: The Sabers come into this game losers of three of their last four games. Now they have to go to the Shark Tank and face a San Jose team that has only lost four games at home in regulation all season. The Sharks also come in on a four game winning streak where the offense has scored 21 goals.
Winner: San Jose. There is a reason the Sharks are the top team in the NHL right now, they know how to protect their house.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Red Wings find themselves in unusual position

Although the Red Wings are not out of the playoff picture (in fact they are currently in eighth place in the Western Conference), they are in some unusual territory. The Red Wings are usually sitting either at or close to the top of the Western Conference at this point in the year. They have finished first in the Central Division for the last eight years, and haven't missed the playoffs since the '89-'90 season. They would usually be described as the hunted, but at this point in time they are the hunters. They have been plagued by injuries this whole season, including losing top superstars like Johan Franzen and Niklas Kronwall for extended periods of time. Despite the injuries, the Wings are still in the thick of things, but they need to scrap for every point they can get. The Wings have only won two games in their last five, but they have gotten six points out of it. They have been playing tough and that should help later in the season. The next eight games can really help out the Wings standings, they have five games against teams that are ahead of them in the Western Conference (also one of those eight is against the defending Stanley Cup champions). If the Wings can get some kind of win streak going they can find themselves in a very good position as they head into the Olympic break.

Nighthawks struggle in opener

In the opening game of the Winter 2010 season the Ball-busters did just that, busted the balls of the heavily favored Nighthawks by a score of 9-2. Andrew Willis, the teams alternate captain, lived up to his huge contract by scoring one of only two goals for the Nighthawks. The other off-season acquisition, John Mosley, added a goal as well. The first shot on goal for the Ball-busters went in, and it was just downhill from there for goaltender Luke Bahrou. He faced 10 shots and gave up 5 points. He was pulled for Matt Roos in the second half. In the second half Matt Roos injured his ankle, typical Rooses. The all-world defenseman and Captain of this team finished with a -4 on the night. Next week he will have his defensive partner back though, and he should be back to form. If you want to look at the positives, the Nighthawks had great physical presence. The team totaled 9 fouls that game, six coming from hard-hitting Andrew Willis. We will see if they can use this to their advantage next Thursday.

Championship Sunday

AFC Championship: Jets vs. Colts
In the AFC Championship game you have the old school rushing attack vs. the new school passing attack. The Jets had the number one rushing attack in the NFL this year, and the Colts had the number two passing attack in the NFL. The game has certainly changed over the past few years. There were 10 quarterbacks who passed for over 4,000 yards this year, a. eight player improvement from the two who passed for that mark in 2003. One thing that has always been a constant in Super Bowl champions is defense. In the last seven years, six Super Bowl champions have finished the season in the top 10 in total defense. The Jets are number one this year in total defense, and in pass defense. A rookie quarterback has only made it this far in the playoffs one other time, and that was Joe Flacco who lost to the eventual Super Bowl champion Steelers. Mark Sanchez hasn't had to do much in his first two playoff games because of the great rushing attack and defense of the Jets. For each team to win their strengths need to show up. The Colts need to find a way to pass on this defense, and get their young recievers involved in the game. The Jets need to be able to run the ball effectively. They cannot get in third and long situations.
Winner: Colts. I feel that Peyton will find a way to win. The inexperience of Mark Sanchez will also be a factor. Despite the great rushing attack, I feel the Colts will find a way to put Sanchez in passing situations, and that will be the difference.

NFC Championship: Vikings vs. Saints
In the NFC you have two teams that can hit a home run on any given play. This game features the top two scoring offenses in the league. Both these teams have explosive playmakers. While both these teams have high-powered offenses; I think the game will come down to defense. The Saints had to face the offense of the Cardinals, and they held them to only 14 points. The Vikings defense has always been good against the run, but they are facing an offense that likes to pass most of the time. This is not good for a Vikings pass defense that ranked 19th in the league.
Winner: Saints. I am a strong believer that a team's problems come out in the playoffs, and Adrian Peterson has had a problem with fumbling. Also, Brett Favre while he has made a career of throwing touchdowns, he has also thrown many interceptions. I feel that in a game that could come down to one or two defensive plays, I give the edge to the Saints.