December 19, 2005

The others must have been shopping...

With Christmas one week away and the holiday season in full swing, the sunday morning turn out was perhaps understandably small. However, given that it was the last game for three weeks, many of the eight roadsters who did make the trek to the courts were surprised there weren't more roadsters.

"After the low turnout the week before, the territorial challenge from the roguesters, and the knowledge it was the last game until after the holidays, I'm for one a bit disappointed more guys didn't show up. Perhaps the possibility of a real fight scared them off."

As to the roguester report of a week ago, Elvis came clean.

"Ya, it was all bull."

What was also borderline bull, according to some of the players, was the stick for the game this week. With only enough players for one line each and a goalie, it seemed logical to balance the teams. But the sticks were pulled, and of course Lak and Kid ended up on the same team.

"A bit silly, if you ask me," commented PFG after the game.

And he wasn't even the goalie facing the deadly duo. Lobsterboy was given the dubious honour of stopping the two most feared players in Sunday Morning Road Hockey history. And with the score 9-0, Lobsterboy had had enough. PFG had already planned to announce a goaltender switch at 10 goals, but Lobsterboy pre-empted him. The others persuaded the crustaceous goalie to wait until the natural period end, which unfortunately--or fortunately, depending on the perspective---didn't take long. At 10-0, the sides were changed.

PFG had more success in the next mini game, but at 10-5 the result was still the same: Lak, Kid, and Idol with the win.

Despite the lobsided scores, the games were challenging. Both goalies had brilliant moments, PFG with a point blank save on Bird that left him beakless and Lobsterboy with several quick glove saves to keep the game--well, not close, but at least extended. And with court conditions treacherous, the teams relied on other tactics--tape to tape passes, and screens--to mark some highlight reel goals.

And perhaps because of the holiday season, both teams were content to enjoy themselves, and not bemoan to less that ideal conditions, turnouts, or stickpull. In the end, it was an enjoyable two games. Happy Holidays to all the roadsters, and may the red goal light always be your friend.

Unless you're a goalie.

Sunday morning's game was threatened by more than just a small turnout. PFG and Lobsterboy discovered the courts locked when they showed up early. To compound matters, the courts themselves were covered with a nasty sheet of frost and ice. And for the goalies, sitting in the western net was an exceptional test on the eyes, as the morning sun reflected off the frost, an enormous, angry nimbus to contend with.

Luckily, Bird came to the rescue with knowledge of where to find the keys, while PFG, Idol, and Elvis pitched in to purchased the salt to ease court conditions. The sun, well, it kept everyone warm.

Despite the salt, conditions were still quite slick, which helped to limit the effectiveness of Kid and Lak somewhat. The first goals of the game did not come early. However, once the court began to dry off, the speedy pair combined with Idol's sharp hands were able to take advantage of their mobility to make sharp passes and create space. And goals.

Following the two games, now down a goalie with Lobsterboy's departure to fulfill a prior commitent, the roadsters engaged in a shootout. The rules were vague, the shots many, and PFG performed admirably, finally solving the dangerous Kid for his last three or six shots.

A late appearance by the Living Legend was a surprise. Not able to play due to 'an exploitive employer'', to coin his very own phrase, he nevertheless felt honour bound to show up and see if anyone else did just that. More startling than his appearance, however, was his apparell. With designer glasses and jeans, Legend looked more like Hefner than any of the other roadsters could hope to aspire to. And with Hefner-like disdain, Legend/Suburb refused to take even a single picture of the game. Ah well. Probably for the best anyways, as we don't need to see yet another shot of Elvis nursing a hang over.

Posted by at 07:40 PM | Comments (7)

December 12, 2005

Sunday's Sunshine Shenanigans

It was a misty morning, with the sunshine doing its best to break though the looming haze of Saturday night. Still, it was a chipper bunch that arrived at the courts -happy that the sun would soon take charge and there would be a rain-free game to be had. After a few minutes of minor court repair, and the Colonel making a quick run for some salt, the game was underway in what would no-doubtedly be the nicest day of roadhockey in December...

But with only 9 players, the benches were short and both teams did their best to adjust to the situation. However, with Kid, Beetle Boy and Elvis without a sub and Nibs in net, facing the wrath of the golden hands of Bird, Colonel, Cowboy, Gump and the Legend with the extra man -it would surely be a long game indeed.

Right off the draw, the situation was punctuated by a natural hat-trick from Bird ...yes Bird, to open the scoring.

With strategy and skilled play the only answer in such a short-handed situation, the underdogs took a moment to compose themselves -and set out to conquer the mountain of momentum.

After a quick discussion, the team came back with a plan and with a vengence. Beetle's forked tongue lashed at his enemies, Kids pre-pubescent hands caressed the net at Gump's end, scoring shot after shot, while Elvis locked-down the defense and played a disciplined game. When things got hot in their end, Nibs flashed the leather, stacked the pads and like a doping olympic gymnast, came up huge with save after big save to keep his team in it.

After what seemed like an eternity, the underdogs turned the tide and took the lead. From that point on, there was no looking back. The other team began to implode. Gump turned on the Legend, the Legend took a nap on the court, Cowboy was sent out to pasture, Bird lost his uncanny ass-scoring ability, and Colonel began shooting from his own end in sheer desperation.

The only reprieve in the underdogs' assault came when; with the winning goal at hand, a clearing attempt deep in the oppositions end caught the Kid right smack in his bald lil berries -dropping him to the court where he lay curled up in humorous discomfort.

With such a wonderful day for roadhockey, the majority of players opted to play a mini game. The extended workout would be cut short however, when a number of the familiar roguesters arrived, insisting that they be allowed to join our game on the ice-free side of the courts as they had been waiting for quite some time.

After denying them -explaining the game wouldn’t be much longer, the discussion turned to verbal sparring and came to a head when a ball exited the court and would not be returned without an ultimatum. Either we allow them to join -or the ball would be thrown on the roof of the school -a tactic unbecoming of an assumed church group. Without the guidence of the founding fathers, things quickly escalated and turned ugly.

Led by an irate Colonel and backed by the usually passive crew of fuming roadsters, the courts turned into one helluva brawl -as we beat back the bible-bashing bunch in a scene that resembled the classic film Slapshot. With the roguesters exiting the courts threatening police involvement, the game and enjoyable afternoon came to an abrupt end; the decision of course to leave and avoid any further complications on what was otherwise a perfect day for roadhockey.

This begs to question whether or not next week's game, which incidentally also marks the last game of 2005, is wise to take place. I for one, believe we should continue to fight for the great game but with the possibility of police involvement looming, one must make the decision to play with some degree of caution... Regardless, it should be a group decision so please leave your thoughts.

Posted by Elvis at 01:27 PM | Comments (8)