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Uno, Dos, Tres


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My first career hat trick in the vhlm came against San Diego.It was such a great feeling, but I wasn't satisfied. I knew I was heading into the VHL where scoring isn't as easy and you have to give more than your all to make a name for yourself. So I set a personal goal to score a hat trick in the big leagues, and I knew it wasn't going to be easy. It definitely wasn't; it took me almost three seasons before I would eventually find the back of the net three times in one game.


It was another beautiful day in Finland, we came off of a 2-1 loss in overtime against the Wranglers. Our next game against Prague was a big game for us to win to continue our battle for first place in the league against Seattle.


Coach had us wake up early the day before so we could watch game film, practice, figure out our strategy, and he could have a pep talk. He told us he was proud of the season we had, we had a lot of people to prove wrong this season, and he has seen improvement from everybody including the new faces, but we still have six more games and post season to prove ourselves to the entire league and fans that we can't play down to our opponents or let our foot off the gas even though we have already clinched a playoff spot and first in the conference. He wanted to see us give our all for the rest of the season.


Next day game day started at 7 so we had to show up around 5 to warm up and talk once more over strategy. We knew going into this game it wasn't going to be easy as Prague was fighting for a playoff spot so they were going to look to start off early. They did just that as Alex Pearson would win an offensive zone faceoff to Thomas Landry II to open the scoring at 5:19 of the first period. We would head back into the locker room being down one outshooting Prague 14-12, the only thing coach had to say was "We are only down one and it's still early, we are one shot off from tying but they are also one shot from going up two, play smart hockey and we will be rewarded."


The second period would start and we would be trying to find that tying goal and it wouldn't take long as 2:39 into the second period Vaakaininen would fire the puck from the circle that deflected off my stick into the back of the net and that would even the game up 1-1. 3:30 would come off the clock and Prague's defenseman would pick up a rebound from my shot and find Ben McGirr on a two on one with Wolf Stansson. McGirr would fire a laser of a shot that would ring off the right post onto Stanssons stick who would one time the puck past Samuel Ross to make it 2-1 at 6:29. 25 seconds later Ben Hafkey would win the faceoff to Vaakanainen in Prague's zone who would snipe it past Woody McPine to even the game up at two. That would leave both teams in a deadlock after 40 minutes.


The third and final period was big for both teams. It was hard to figure out who was going to end up winning the game, but someone had too. It would come down to who wanted it more, and that person at the moment would be Ben Hafkey at 2:37 off of a Tony Bolonee shot that missed the net and found a way to Hafkey's stick who eventually would bury the puck to take the lead. We would hold the lead for about 9 minutes before Tomas Landery II would have almost the same outcome as he would miss the net on a shot and it would be fed back to the point for Cinnamon Block, who would also miss the net, and then back to Landry who would bury his second attempt at 10:53 of the third to even the game at 3-3. No team could be comfortable; once you thought you had the lead it was snatched away, it almost felt like it would be a game that would end up going into overtime, or a shootout. 38 seconds later I would be fed a pass from Vaakanainen that would lead to a wide open cage, and that would give us the lead again making it 4-3. We would get a power play opportunity at 12:54 to give us a chance to extend the lead. I took a pass from Erik Summers 17 seconds later, the crowd got quiet for me, everything just went silent and slowed down, I knew if I didn't capitalize here I wouldn't have another opportunity, not only could I finally score my first career hat trick but it was a goal that could possibly seal the deal. I was on the right circle wide open for a one timer, as I was screaming for the puck I knew I've been in this position before, but I've either missed or put the puck right into the goalies chest, but it felt different as it felt as if I was more confident. I picked my spot but didn't give it away to the goalie and fired a laser into the back of the net. That's when reality hit me again as I saw the hats hitting the ice. As I got to the bench Erik Summers threw me the puck and said to put some tape around it.


We eventually would hang on to win the game with the final score of 5-3 picking up a big two points and a much needed win. It is such an amazing feeling to be able to achieve a personal goal, but now I have to move onto a bigger better goal and I don't think I have to spell out exactly what that is.



Words: 1020

Edited by Spaz
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