Prince Rabbits move closer to place in Asia c’ship

first_imgAn announced crowd of 1,800 showed up at DyDo Drinco Ice Arena in Tokyo for the showdown between the Asia League’s second and sixth seeded playoff teams, the Prince Rabbits and Icebucks, respectively.Game 3 of the best-of-five series begins at 7:15 p.m. on Tuesday at the same venue.Seibu players smiled after the victory, but they also gave honest critiques of their performance, which was more lackadaisical than gritty at times.“I think we did what we had to do,” 32-year-old Canadian forward Joel Prpic said after his two-assist outing, but I think we really got sloppy in the second half of the game.“It’s hard when you go up 5-1 to stay totally focused, but we can’t start creating any bad habits, and I think we did that.”The Icebucks, who lost Game 1 on Saturday 6-0, wasted little time in taking the early lead, though. They scored a power-play goal at the 2:30 mark, with Kanji Arisawa firing a slap shot past Seibu goaltender Naoya Kikuchi. Seibu tied it at 1-all with 6:10 left in the opening stanza on Kiyoshi Fujita’s shot from close range on the man advantage, with Yosuke Kon providing the helper.Then Tomohiko Uchiyama found the back of the net, shattering the short-lived tie at the 16:30 mark. The Prince Rabbits’ quick passes and spread-the-ice positioning created the scoring chance, which Uchiyama converted with a methodical smack of his stick. Ryuichi Kawai made the initial pass to Prpic, who zipped the puck to the blade of Uchiyama’s stick.Captain Takahito Suzuki and Co. enjoyed leaving the ice with a one-goal edge, but after the game he admitted Seibu’s first-period effort was “not so good.” “It turned to OK,” he said, in the second period.One factor in this turnaround was that Seibu’s players stayed out of the penalty box in the second period. The Prince Rabbits committed five penalties in the first, but was whistled for just one in the middle 20 minutes.“We were facing some penalties in the first period and therefore we couldn’t keep the exact pace (that we wanted),” Prince Rabbits coach Shinichi Iwasaki said.Left wing Chris Yule agreed.“In the first period they (the Icebucks) overwhelmed us with their speed and puck movement,” said Yule, who is from Edmonton, Alberta.After the first intermission, Seibu altered the complexion of this game.It didn’t take long.Center Daisuke Obara ripped a wrist shot from the slot past Nikko Kobe goalie Michi Hashimoto to make it 3-1 at the 24:13 mark.Suzuki increased the lead to 4-1 just over two minutes later, scoring a power-play goal.The captain downplayed the goal, though, crediting Prpic for helping him get the puck past Hashimoto.“Joel provided me with a great pass,” he said later. “OK, it was not so good of a shot, but it (went) in and I’m happy.”With a three-goal lead and the second period still not halfway over, the Prince Rabbits had no trouble getting fired up. They skated aggressively behind the net and along the boards to keep the puck in their offensive zone.When the Icebucks failed to clear the puck after one well-orchestrated scoring chance, Seibu jumped on the chance and Yule flicked a shot beyond Hashimoto’s reach for a 5-1 lead at the 30:38 mark.Nikko Kobe cut the lead to 5-1 on Yoshiyuki Hatano’s top-shelf wrist shot early in the third. Yule completed the scoring on an empty-netter with 1:09 left in the game.“We are not looking forward to the next round yet,” Prpic said afterward. “We are looking forward to Tuesday and getting the job done. We’ll go from there.”NOTE: The league’s other semifinal series pits the Hokkaido-based Nippon Paper Cranes and Korean squad Kangwon Land. The Cranes lead the series 2-0 after posting a 4-3 win on Saturday and a 5-1 victory on Sunday. Led by its high-powered offense, the Seibu Prince Rabbits are one win away from a berth in the Asia League Ice Hockey Championship.The Prince Rabbits overcame a slow start and used a dazzling offensive surge in the second period, a three-goal onslaught that ate up only 10:38 of game time, to defeat the visiting Nikko Kobe Icebucks 6-2 in Game 2 of their second-round playoff series. GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMEScenter_img IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5last_img read more

Mackenzie Carson departs Bristol Bears Women

first_imgCarson arrived at Shaftesbury Park in the summer of 2018 and made an immediate impact with her ability to get over the gain line and give the Bears front-foot ball, as well as her physicality in contact. She covered both the back-row and hooker during her time with the Bears and made the step up to represent Canada at Under-20 and senior level in her singular season in Kim Oliver’s side.Bristol Bears Women Head Coach, Kim Oliver, said: “We’re gutted to lose Mackenzie after only one season at the club as she pursues her dreams of playing at international level for her country.“She’s a talented player who brought a lot to the club both on and off the field and she will be greatly missed.“Everyone at the club would like to thank Mackenzie and wish her the best of luck for the future.”last_img read more