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Wolves rally leads to first OAA Red win

November 24, 2010 - Goalie Troy Fasseel shifted and blocked Birmingham Unified from scoring on their shot.

The clock continued to count down the last 17 seconds in the second period. Brad Pizzey hustled to the puck before Birmingham Unified tried to break the 2-2 tie on Thursday night.

Clarkston was able to keep at bay in the final period as the Wolves scored two more in their season opener at Detroit Skate Club to win 4-2 in their first OAA Red game

"We struggled," Clarkston Varsity Hockey Coach Bryan Krygier admitted about the team's first two periods.

The Wolves pace shifted on the ice as they went into the last 17 minutes.

"We started to play better," Krygier noted as they improved. "We started to play the body a little bit and started to get back to more defensively minded. The puck started to go for us. We made some big shots."

Pizzey made two goals for the night. His first was 9:13 left in the first period.

He was assisted by Adam Larking and Chad Wotton as the Wolves took advantage of Birmingham being one man down during a power play.

Three minutes later Chris Donnellon tied the score and Birmingham took more shots on the net in attempt to take the lead, outshooting Clarkston 9-7 in the period.

Dillon Drayer brought the boys back into the lead with his goal four minutes into the the second period. He had assistance from Connor Hughes and Matt Harrington.

The Wolves outshot Birmingham 38-25.

Krygier saw positives and negatives the boys can work on from their first game.

"Our goal tender was pretty solid for us and it is always good to get your first win and we did," he said, adding the Wolves need to be more consistent.

They continued the week visiting Novi on Saturday where they lost, 2-0.

"We couldn't score on power plays,

Krygier noted. "We had about eight power play opportunities our special teams could score on."

Clarkston made 22 shots on goal and Novi made 35.

From the both games Krygier said they need to be making the right decisions during all periods of the game.

"Our special teams need to start putting the puck in the net for us and getting the goal at the key times to get us a couple of wins," he added.

The team has 15 returners and six new faces to help them as they make a run for a successful season.

"Our new players need to start learning and helping our veterans right away," Krygier said. "The quicker they learn the more they will be effective. They need to learn as much as they can and start getting out there and training."

Krygier is confident in his returners and them helping the new players along.

"They have been playing all different types of situations for the last 2-3 years. It shouldn't be new to them," he said. "It will come down to them executing what they know. They pretty much know what I expect them to know so it should be a fairly smooth transition for them."

The Wolves host a Thanksgiving Tournament on Friday and Saturday.

They begin with South Lyon of Friday at 5 p.m.

"They have have pretty solid team," said Krygier, pointing out it is the first time Clarkston is playing the team. "They are a fairly young program. They have a good coach and it should be a good game."

Brighton and Farmington play each other in the following game. Winners from both games move on to the championship round on Saturday, 2:30 p.m. Consolation round begins at noon. All games are held at Detroit Skate Club, 888 Denison Court in Bloomfield Hills.

Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007.
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