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Wildcat icers finally break slump with win, tie



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February 08, 2012 - After a rough two-week stretch which saw the Wildcats hockey team lose all four games they played, they got back on track with a win and a tie last week.

The Wildcats broke out of their slump in a big way as junior Adam Pardonoff recorded his first shutout of the season in Oxford's 4-0 victory over Rochester United Jan. 31.

"It was a good bounce back win for us," varsity head coach Dave Hague said. "They were a good team (and) it was a league game, so it was a real important win for us going into the OAA (Oakland Activities Association) playoffs starting next week.

Jimmy Wallington returned from an injury to lead Oxford with two goals while senior Nick Hocker contributed three assists.

Hague said despite looking at the scores of their four losses, which started with a 10-2 loss at the hands of Clarkston on Jan. 18, the team wasn't playing bad hockey.

"We had some pucks go into the net that probably shouldn't have and a couple of minor mistakes were exploited," he said. "We played some good teams, but as hard as it is to believe with those scores, we were the better team."

"We were disappointed with losing like that, but we were headed in a good direction," Hague added.

During that stretch, the Wildcats lost 9-1 to Farmington, 6-1 to Farmington Hills Unified and 5-4 to Chippewa Valley.

Oxford ended the week by picking up a 3-3 tie against St. Clair on Saturday, Feb. 4 during the OAA/MAC Showcase at Oynx Ice Arena in Rochester.

Trailing 3-1 midway through the third period, Oxford found it's scoring touch when senior Nolan Chapman and Dean Couwlier found the back of the next.

Oxford outshot St. Clair 37-24 percent in the game. "All-in-all, we played all right, but we would have liked to have gotten the win," Hague said. "We outplayed them a little bit, but we weren't getting enough traffic in front of the net."

Oxford hosts Avondale at Troy Sports Center beginning at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 8.

Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.
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