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25-April-2005 – Watchmen close season with awards announcement

EDMONTON – 1 point short of a pennant, and 2 goals short of a championship, the Watchmen’s 2004-05 season goes into the record books.  While it is easy to dwell on the “what if’s”, all in all the Watchmen had a very successful 4th season.  Most importantly the Watchmen have retrieved all of the jerseys they started the season with which is almost as good as a championship.  Thanks to players and particularly management for a great season!  Next year kids, next year…

The Purple Carpet Awards

Voting Results


Watchmen MVW

Cory F-Bomb Wilkinson

“Not only because he comes to play every game, but also because he works his ass off to get us all organized every year”

 

Don Cherry’s MVP

Dino Greek Salad Vlahadamis

“Dino showed up even when he was not playing on the summer team, and when he was on the IR”

 

The Golden Pen (Best WatchNET Write-up)

19-December-04 “Watchmen s#*t bed against classless retards”

“If the Brewers can have a sense of humour, so can I”

 

Most Valuable Spare

Deisman, Nathan

Tough pick considering that all of them, played huge roles at different times”

 

Stats Results


 

George Mallia Memorial (Most Games Played)

Preston the Kid Kulmatycki– 29 out of 30

 

Tony van Tol Memorial (Most Penalty Minutes)

Russ Misselbrook – 52 minutes

 

Ed Jean Memorial (Fewest Penalties/Games Played)

Russ Simpson – 0.4 minutes/game (1 penalty every 5 games)

 

Chris Marsh Memorial (Most Points)

Cam Phillips* - 36

(*Tied with Cory F-Bomb Wilkinson – Games Played is tie-breaker)

 

Watchmen Cup 3-Stars winner

Cory F-Bomb Wilkinson* – 60 points

(*Tied with Preston the Kid Kulmatycki AND Cam Tazer Phillips – Playoffs 3-Stars is the tie-breaker)

 

 

22-April-2005 – Watchmen go down swinging

EDMONTON – In the words of one Mrs. F-Bomb, the Watchmen did their best, while the Northern Stars went home with the prom queen. 

With the series tied at a game apiece and fans coming in all the way from Calgary and directly from major surgery for the big game, as well as the Watchwomen in full booster gear in the crowd, the stage was set for an exciting finish.

Playing in the final game of the entire ERHL winter season the Watchmen showed up to with the same intensity and drive to win they had in the second game of the series.  With the championship on the line both teams played a little cautious and did their best to keep shooters to the outside.  The Watchmen opened the scoring on a rebound that Shaun Mills finished off bursting in off the point, and the Watchmen took a 1-0 lead into the second period. 

The Northern Stars dominated play in the second period and despite outshooting the Watchmen 29-11 at the end of the second frame, they were only able to knock the tying goal and so the series came down to the final 15 minutes.  The Watchmen regained their composure in the 3rd period and for the most part controlled the play.

Despite some chances at both ends neither team could beat either goaltender and it was looking likely that overtime was on the horizon.  With less than two minutes to go the Watchmen caught a break and Preston the Kid stormed in on a breakaway, which was turned aside by Northern Stars tender Jim Poniewozik.  As is often the case in close games, a big save at one end turns into a scoring opportunity at the other and the Northern Stars gathered the rebound and came out of their zone on a 3 on 2, and Jason Samograd made a perfect tip over a sprawling Watchmen goaltender to break the tie with 1:44 remaining.  It was a backbreaking goal for the Watchmen, who then gave up another only 20 seconds later when the Stars broke into their zone and fed the puck to an unmarked player in the slot.

Impressively, the Watchmen were able to get one of the goals back, but a two-goal deficit was too much to overcome with only a minute to play and the final buzzer sounded, crowning the Northern Stars as Div 2 champions.

Unfortunately things got a little ugly near the end of the game, when two Northern Stars classlessly took runs at Watchmen players. It is not hard to run a guy in a non-hitting league, and doesn’t prove much beyond one’s own limited cerebral processing power.  On top of being total cheap shots they were the kind of elbows that could injure someone and was just plain stupid.  It was an unfortunate classless display of classlessness in an otherwise hard fought series.  Nonetheless the actions of a few lobotomized monkeys do not define a team, and for the most part these two teams matched up well and played good solid hockey (game 1 excluded).

The loss was a bitter pill to swallow for the Watchmen who have been in the finals for the last three years but have yet to take home the cup.  Player-coach Wilkinson was so distraught about the loss he even choked down a honey-garlic wing at the house of Don follow the game (in an notable display of sportsmanship the Northern Stars, who were also at Mr. Cherry’s, bought a round for their opponents).  Nonetheless, after being spanked in the first game, the Watchmen made an exciting comeback and despite their long list of injuries they were little more than a well-timed bounce or two away from taking the series.  And while that’s no prom queen, it’s nothing to be ashamed of.

Congratulations to the Northern Stars for a good season and a great final series.  Thanks to the Watchwomen for putting up with the Watchmen all year and especially in the playoffs, and thanks to the Watchmen for a fun season.  With the core of the squad returning next year the expectations are high for another championship run… but this time, let’s take the cup!

Stay tuned for end of year party announcement…

Watchmen Goals

Northern Stars Goals

Three Stars

1)      Jim Poniewozik (Northern Stars)

2)      Jason Samograd (Norther Stars)

3)      Shaun Mills

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 2 vs. Northern Stars 3 (Loss, 3-2)

 

22-April-2005 – Always the f#$%ing bridesmaid…

EDMONTON – Watchmen finish runners-up for the third year in a row.

 

21-April-2005 – Lord of the Rinks III: The Return of the Matt

EDMONTON – This is it folks: Game 3, for all the marbles.  Single game elimination for the title; the mother of all sporting events.

The stage is set for the Watchmen to battle though adversity for their second attempt in three years to take the division 2 title in Game 3.  The Watchmen will try to exorcize their game 3 demons from 2003 when they dropped the finals to the Force (this year’s Division 3 champions) and 2001 when they (as the Stars) lost to Pentastar.

The Watchmen have an uphill battle against a solid Northern Stars squad, and will be missing two starters Cliff McClain and Cam Phillips who was admitted to hospital this morning for surgery.

The Watchmen are however looking forward to the return of fan-favourite Matt the caged animal Barker who after receiving clearance from Eric Lindros’ doctor (“concussion… hmmm, never heard of that – you’re fine to play”) is preparing to make his triumphant return to the line-up.  The announcement was made at meeting of the lynch-Girard club, after which it was almost unanimously decided to disband the club (Wilkinson thought the club still had merit).

WatchNET staff is giddy with excitement as only hours remain before the big game.  Get your seat early – there actually could be fans tonight!

 

19-April-2005 – Watchmen fan club analyzes Saturday’s historic victory

EDMONTON – The WatchNET received an exclusive transcript from an elusive and thought to be mythical Watchmen fan.  The highlights of this shocking exposé follow:

On behalf of the Watchmen fan club, I would like to express my overwhelming joy with regards to the performance of the boys on Saturday night. It was a great game and a good time was had by all. The fans were full of positive comments towards the boys’ performances. Comments such as, "They are actually playing hockey tonight." and "WOW we scored!" were heard throughout the stands on more than one occasion.

Several fans were quite agitated throughout the game as the remaining seconds counted down. One fan, we’ll call her Mrs. N, had to withstand many barrages of another insane fans gripping of her leg. While the fallen member of the Watchmen, Matt Barker, also had to endure the screaming voices of not one, but 7 women belting out obscenities as the Stars scored with 33 seconds remaining in the game.

As always, the boys ventured to the house of Don after the game. It was nice for the fans to be invited for once. Upon arrival the fan club met and discussed the finer points of the game. It was decided that the Watchmen need to stay aggressive but stay out of the penalty box.

All members of the fan club decided that it would be in the Watchmen's best interest to nag these finer points to the boys over the next 5 days until it became ingrained in their little hockey heads. (Wilkinson's wife has had the nagging on full force as his head is thicker than most).

The fan club will be out in full force on Thursday night's game. We are expecting a win and will be most unsatisfied if we suffer a loss. In fact, if the Watchmen loose, the fan club may be so upset that they will have to with hold some everyday essentials that the boys enjoy...

So good luck to our boys in purple and make us proud!

Sincerely,

A Crazed Fan

aka, Mrs. F-Bomb

p.s. Wilkinson, if your reading this, you better ****ing win!!!!”

Note: Edited slightly for content… this is a family webpage after all Mrs. F-Bomb.

 

18-April-2005 – Watchmen showed resolve to recover

EDMONTON – After having their collective asses handed to them Thursday night, the Watchmen could have curled up and died like they did last year after dropping the first game of the final series to the Wretched Refuse.  Perhaps it was the near capacity crowd, or the words of wisdom from a Jedi master or even the encouragement from Honey-Garlic Sr. in Calgary; whatever the case the boys in purple were able to put Game 1 behind them and focus on the job at hand.

The intensity was apparent even in the dressing room with many of the players arriving almost an hour before game time.  The Watchmen were without two of their three centremen as Marv Chimney Blue was saving children from a burning apartment building in Calgary (or something equally important) and Matt Rookie Sensation Barker is still recovering from Girard’s attempt on his life.  While their absence resulted in some line mixing as Cliff McClain moved from the point up to forward, beyond that the Watchmen did not try to tinker too much with their game plan but rather to focus on taking care of their own end first, and let the goals come as they may (ok, maybe that was a major shift in tactics after all).

The Watchmen were buoyed by an early burst of speed from Chris Killer Girard who cut through the Northern Stars defenses and put the Watchmen up 1-0 early on.  The game’s intensity was very high as the majority of the game was spent either short-handed or penalty killing.  The Watchmen were able to stave off several two-man advantages from the Northern Stars and clung to their lead going into the second period.  Midway into the second frame Girard popped in his second goal of the night finishing a perfect pass from Wilkinson on a two-man advantage for the Watchmen.  The Northern Stars did get this goal back before the period was out as they knocked in a rebound in the dying minutes, and the stage was set for an exciting third period.

Both sides had their fair share of chances as power plays continued to be awarded to both sides (while on balance the Watchmen did end up with 6 extra minutes) but neither side could put the puck in the net.  The Watchmen looked set to ice the game when they had a two-man advantage with 5 minutes remaining.  However, their 5 on 3 power play turned into a 4 on 3 advantage and then a 4 on 5 disadvantage and before they knew it there was a minute to go in the game and the Northern Stars had the puck in their zone and the goalie pulled.  The attack ended up being too much for the Watchmen who could not clear the puck and gave up the equalizer with just 33 seconds on the clock.

Impressively, the Watchmen did not let down despite the huge momentum advantage the Stars now enjoyed.  The Watchmen pressed in OT and got several good shots off, but couldn’t score and the clock expired, leading to shootouts with the championship on the line.  Cory Corporal F-Bomb Wilkinson shot first and gave the Watchmen a 1-0 lead on a perfectly executed penalty shot.  That was all the offence the Watchmen would need, as their goaltender Tim Weis, who had been shelled only two nights earlier, turned away all three of the Northern Stars’ penalty shots and the Watchmen sent the series into the third and final game on Thursday.

While it is premature to pile mounds of praise onto the Watchmen, regardless of the outcome of game 2 they had regained their pride they had lost when the Stars ran up the score on them in game 1.  Given how close the division was all season long it is only fitting that finals goes the distance.

 

16-April-2005 – Character folks, f$#^ing Character.

EDMONTON – Watchmen bounce back and take game two in shootouts.

Watchmen Goals

Northern Stars Goals

Three Stars

1)      Tim Weis

2)      Chris Girard

3)      Cory Wilkinson

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 3 vs. Northern Stars 2 (Shoot-Out Win, 3-1)

 

15-April-2005 – Watchmen look to Ryan Smyth for words of inspiration

EDMONTON – With the season on the line tomorrow, the Watchmen are looking to Oiler’s star Ryan Smyth for some inspirational cliques to motivate them for Saturday night’s rematch against the Northern Stars.  Smyth, who is not playing in the NHL this year apparently has been following the Division 2 finals closely and he the following to say in an exclusive WatchNET interview:

“You know it's do or die.  They're behind the eight ball, in a must-win situation.  Although they've got their backs against the wall, they’re down but not out.

They’ve got to circle the wagons and play like there's no tomorrow.  They have to get back on track and maintain their composure; they are not out of it yet.

They're going to have to battle back from the brink of elimination, but they've been here before. They have a lot of big game experience.  They simply have to win out – it all comes down to making sure they are peaking at the right time.”

“That and not suck”, player-coach Wilkinson added.

 

14-April-2005 – Northern Stars embarrass Watchmen

EDMONTON – As if the Watchmen hadn’t done enough to ruin Barker’s April, their effort Thursday night caused him to go into convulsions and get the dry heaves sitting through one of the worst games in Watchmen history.  In short the Watchmen were throttled.  No amount of analysis or reflection on Thursday’s ‘effort’ will change the outcome.  The Watchmen simply have to put it behind them and focus on finishing the season 2-0. 

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 0 vs. Northern Stars 10 (Loss, 2-1)

 

14-April-2005 – Northern Stars’ home ice advantage

EDMONTON – Odds makers are having a tough time calling the favourite in the ERHL Division 2 final.  The Northern Stars edged out the season series 3-2-1, although incredibly the two teams squared off at 22 goals for and against while playing head-to-head.  In addition the Northern Stars and the Watchmen tied for first place this season in terms of points, but the Northern Stars edged out the Watchmen for the title with 1 more win.  While these differences are too tight to call a clear favourite, the fact that the Northern Stars have home ice advantage in the series may be their biggest edge.  Oddly enough the home team has only given up one point in their 6 game season series:

Sat. Sept 18 - Watchmen 6 Northern Stars 2

Sat. Oct 16 - Northern Stars 3 Watchmen 3

Sat. Nov 20 - Northern Stars 4 Watchmen 2

Sat. Dec 18 - Watchmen 7 Northern Stars 4

Tues. Mar 1 - Northern Stars 4 Watchmen 2

Mon Apr 4 - Northern Stars 5 Watchmen 2

No matter how you look at it, it is shaping up to be an exciting final when these two teams face-off in less than 6 hours.

 

13-April-2005 – Finals will see 1st place vs. 1st place as the Brewers drop game 3 to the Stars

EDMONTON – The Watchmen and the Northern Stars who tied for first place in the season standings will face off for the Division 2 crown this week.  The Watchmen swept their best of three series against the Landex Shockers, while the Northern Stars needed three games to eliminate the Brewers.  Several Watchmen were at the game Tuesday night to sign autographs and watch game 3 (which was really just a thinly veiled excuse to go to Don Cherry’s and have wings).

The Northern Stars outplayed the Brewers who were held in the game by some strong goaltending until midway through the second period when the floodgates opened and the Brewers fell behind 3-0.  They tried to make a game of it by bouncing back on several occasions from 3-0 and 4-1 deficits and appeared to have a chance to tie the game up when the Stars took 3 penalties in the last 2 minutes of the game.

The Brewers couldn’t find the back of the net and the clock expired with the Northern Stars on top 5-3.  While the Stars had a higher intensity series, their opponents in the finals the Watchmen got an extra couple days rest.  It is difficult to say if either is an advantage going into the finals Thursday night at 6:45pm.  Congrats go out to the Brewers and the Shockers for a hard fought season.  Regardless of the outcome of the finals, Div2 saw strong competition from all squads all season long. 

Northern Stars down Brewers Tuesday night.

 

 

 

11-April-2005 – Phillips flying, Barker grounded as Watchmen sweep their way into finals

EDMONTON – Cam Phillips scored a Watchmen playoff record 4 goals to lead his squad to an 8-2 victory and a series sweep over the Landex Shockers Sunday night.  Having blanked the Shockers in the opening game, the Watchmen came out flying, clearly wanting to put the best of 3 series away in two games.

The Watchmen netted an early goal that was disallowed.  Instead of “shoving it up his a#%” as he was instructed by the referee*, Simpson decided to bulge the twine a second time only seconds later.  Despite scoring twice in a shift he was still unable to get credit for a goal as it was given to a player on the bench.   Nonetheless, the Watchmen were off to a flying start.  However, Watchmen goaltender Tim Weis, having just returned to the lineup had his squad wishing he’d remained on the IR when he let in a soft shot from the hash marks that even Glen Healy could have saved**.  Fortunately for Weis, Cam one man wrecking crew Phillips showed up to play and quickly restored the Watchmen’s lead.  Marvin Blue extended that lead to 2 before Weis decided to let in carbon copy of the first goal, once again allowing the Shockers back into the game.  Phillips came to the rescue a second time netting his second goal of the period, rounding out the first at a score of 4-2.

To his credit, Weis’ antics did appear to give the Watchmen the boost they needed by sending a message that a flurry of offence would be required, as he wasn’t about to save anything.  The Watchmen got the message loud and clear exploding for 3 unanswered goals in the second period, sucking the life out of the Shockers’ bench.  Unfortunately, the news was not all good for the Watchmen in the second period.  Matt Rookie Sensation Barker collided hard with his line-mate Chris Girard, a crash that resulted in a season-ending concussion for Barker.  While the Watchmen are fortunate that Barker didn’t see the hit coming and tense up at the last moment – a move that surely would have resulted in broken ribs and internal bleeding for Girard – such that two thirds of the “don’t believe the hype” line remain intact. 

Despite losing a great player and a jolly good fellow, the Watchmen carried on finishing the Shockers’ season with an 8-2 lose.  While the 3rd period was little more than a formality, the Watchmen did try to eliminate more of their own players when Cliff McClain fired a clearing shot into the Watchmen bench and squarely off Nisky Jacknisky’s jaw.  Fortunately for the Watchmen their fallen comrade count would remain at one as Jacknisky’s bruising would be little more than his pride (and not his eye like last year).

Having put away the Shockers in two they now face the winner of the Brewers and the Northern Stars’ series in the finals that begin Thursday night.

*actual quote

**6 times out of 10, maybe, if it was shot right at his chest – but the point stands: i.e. this shot should have been caught

Watchmen Goals

Landex Shockers Goals

Three Stars

1)      Cam Phillips

2)      Dana Gray

3)      Marvin Blue

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 8 vs. Landex Shockers 2 (Win, 2-0)

 

8-April-2005 – Watchmen, Brewers win opening games

EDMONTON – The Watchmen and Landex Shockers faced off in the opening night of Div 2 playoffs Thursday at K of C Arena.  Despite finishing ahead of the Shockers in the standings, the Watchmen are arguably the underdog in round, as the Shockers won the season series 3-1-1.  On top of which the Shockers entered the playoffs on a hot streak going 5-1 in their last 6 games, while the Watchmen put up a 2-4 record as they slipped out of first place.

The Watchmen jumped out to an early lead on a single-handed effort by Tommy Nisky Jacknisky who shelved the puck in the first minute of play.  The Shockers were without their two most productive goal-scorers Jeffrey Foss (55) and Adam Giesbrecht (15), and despite getting off to a slow start, they bounced back and hemmed the Watchmen in their own zone for the better part of the first period.  Goaltender Chris Grant, filling in for the injured Weis, shut the door and the Watchmen finished the first period with a 1-goal lead.

The Watchmen settled down and found their legs midway through first and into the second period.  Cory Wilkinson, apparently inspired by a motivational speech prior to the game by a member of the fan club, slipped in a short-handed goal midway through the second period.  The Watchmen slowly took the lead in shots on net, but were unable to find the twine until Chris Girard came out from behind the Shockers net and wristed home a beauty with a minute to go in the second.

Down but not out, the Shockers put the pressure on the Watchmen to finish the second period and for the first few minutes of the third, culminating in a 2-on-1 from the slot that was turned aside by Grant.  Turning the puck down the ice, a laser-beam from Girard into the top corner finished off a play from Wilkinson and Vlahadamis and the Watchmen were up 4-0.  Sensing the game was out of reach, the Shockers, the least penalized team in Division 2, got a little chippy but little besides a few ugly words and a rub or two against the boards were exchanged, and the Watchmen hung on for the shut-out and a 1-0 lead in the best of three series.

On the other pad, the fourth place Brewers who finished the season on a 6 game losing streak knocked off the Northern Stars 7-4, taking a 1-0 lead in that series.  Both series resume Sunday night at K of C.  The Shockers, with their backs to the wall are likely to have their gunners back in the lineup, so the Watchmen will have to show up when the puck drops at 10pm if they want to sweep the series.

Watchmen Goals

Landex Shockers Goals

Three Stars

1)      Chris Girard

2)      Chris Grant

3)      Cory Wilkinson

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 4 vs. Landex Shockers 0 (Win, 1-0)

 

Regular Season Coverage

 

5-April-2005 – Watchmen squander lead and first place

EDMONTON – The Watchmen jumped out to 2 goal led 5 minutes into their final regular season game against the Northern Stars.  With the roar of the crowd on their side, the Northern Stars clawed their way back into the game and tied it up with 10 minutes to go in the 3rd period.

A tie, or even an overtime loss would have been enough to secure first place for the Watchmen, but they couldn’t clear their own zone with two and a half minutes remaining and gave up the 3-2 goal and first place along with it.  The Northern Stars netted two more goals in the dying minute of the game, the first as they caught the Watchmen goaltender trying to sneak to the bench for an extra attacker and the last a clear empty-netter from their own zone. 

It was a close game and a preview of what the playoffs hold, with the game potentially going either way.  The difference was the Northern Stars were able to capitalize on their chances when it mattered and the Northern Stars goaltender shut the door at the other end.  The loss means that the Watchmen and the Northern Stars tie for first place, but the Northern Stars, with more wins claim the pennant and draw the Brewers in the first round.  The Watchmen go toe-to-toe with the Landex Shockers Thursday night at 10:15 at K of C.

Watchmen Goals

Northern Stars Goals

Three Stars

1)      Jim Poniewozik (Northern Stars)

2)      Jesse Funnell (Northern Stars)

3)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 2 vs. Northern Stars 5 (Loss, 17-8-3-1)

 

4-April-2005 – Watchmen season wraps up tonight

EDMONTON – The Watchmen season comes down to their final match against the Northern Stars.  The Watchmen need only a point to retain first place, but a regulation time victory for the Stars will hand them the pennant as they will tie the Watchmen in points, but claim the title with more wins.  The winner of this battle will face the Brewers in first round of the playoffs, and the loser will face the Landex Shockers. 

The Brewers both squad are formidable opponents, although the Shockers have been on hot streak, while the Brewers have coasted to the finish line.  The Cameron Eagles managed their first point in 18 games in a 9-6 victory over the Brewers on the weekend, as both teams rounded out their seasons.  The Eagles at one point in the season were in first place, but struggle for the better part of the season, despite being in most games, they continually came up short.  Kudos goes to them for continuing to field and team and to play competitively even after being knocked out of playoff contention.  Kudos also goes to the Timberwolves who struggled early on, but put together an impressive winning streak in the final 3rd of the season to make a run at the playoffs.  They ran out of gas at the end, and managed to come up with only 1 point in their final two games.  Had they taken the full four they would have overtaken the Brewers for the final spot, and given their hot streak could have been a serious contender for the cup.

The Watchmen, who have been doing just enough to hang onto first place in the division are going to have to find their ‘A’ game to bring to the rink as the competition is strong this year.  For the Watchmen, the playoffs start tonight.

 

27-March-2005 – Watchmen’s final position comes down to last game

EDMONTON – The Watchmen clipped the Eagles 5-1 Saturday night at K of C arena, as the Timberwolves’ playoff hopes came to an end on the other half of the twin rink as they skated to a 3-3 draw with the Northern Stars.  The Eagles, whose season has been mathematically over for several months fielded a team half-full of spare players.  While they struggled in the second half of the season, a big kudos goes out to the squad for continuing to dress a team every night and putting forth consistent solid efforts, despite repeatedly coming up empty handed. 

Led by Tommy Dr. Nisky Jacknisky who netted the Watchmen’s second hat-trick of the season, the boys in purple came out hard and played a solid three periods.  Mills and McClain blasted home a goal each from the point and picked up an assist each to round out the scoring.  Phillips also picked up an assist drawing him within one point of Wilkinson for the Chris Marsh Memorial trophy for most Watchmen points in a season, while Russ Misselbrook added 6 minutes to his penalty total to taking a commanding lead in the Tony van Tol Memorial trophy category for most penalties in the season.  The Watchmen were not able to hold onto their clean sheet however, and gave up a third period goal when they tried to rush the puck out of their own zone while killing a two-man penalty. 

The Watchmen will need to continue rolling with only one game left in the season.  A draw for the Northern Stars puts them 2 points behind the Watchmen as the teams go head-to-head to finish the season on Monday April 4th.  The Stars have the tie-breaking advantage with more wins, but will need to beat the Watchmen in regular time to overtake them for first place.  With 3rd and 4th place still undecided with solid Brewers and Shockers squads the prize for finishing first is nothing more than bragging rights.  Meanwhile, the Timberwolves who put together an impressive Spring to make a dash for the playoffs came up only a game or two short of making the post-season.  Hats off to them for an impressive run.  With Div 2 being as competitive as it is, there is no clear favourite and the team that shows up with the most desire to win will hoist the trophy.

Watchmen Goals

Eagles Goals

Three Stars

1)      Tom Dr. Nisky Jacknisky

2)      Shaun Mills

3)      Cliff McClain

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 5 vs. Eagles 1 (Win, 17-7-3-1)

 

21-March-2005 – Watchmen lose to short Timberwolves bench

EDMONTON – The Watchmen’s spring woes continue as they dropped a 5-4 decision to the Timberwolves Sunday morning.  After jumping out to a one-goal lead five minutes into the first period on a goal scored by Preston the Kid, the Watchmen gave up three straight goals, two in the final minute of the first to end first frame down 3-1.  The Timberwolves added another on a tipped shot on a power play in the second period. 

Out shot 25-9 in the second period Dana Gray kicked-started the Watchmen offence closing the gap to 4-2.  The Timberwolves bounced right back, netting their 3rd goalmouth scramble of the morning.  Nycholat and Blue added a goal each to bring the game to within a goal, but the Watchmen simply ran out of time, dropping their 5th game in their last 7 outings.

To their credit, the Watchmen did not curl up and die, but fought back to make a game out of it, but came up one goal short.  The Timberwolves, who are mathematically still fighting for a playoffs spot seemed to have more drive than the Watchmen who struggled to control the puck or make plays until half way through the game when they had dug themselves too big of a hole to climb. 

With the playoffs fast approaching the Watchmen need to settle down and start playing their game again.  Division 2 teams are all averaging over 5 goals-for per game, and so it is going to take a lot of offence to go deep in the playoffs this year.

Watchmen Goals

Timberwolves Goals

Three Stars

1)      Jeremy Schaefer (Timberwolves)

2)      Dana Gray

3)      Corwin Honey-Garlic Nycholat

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 4 vs. Timberwolves 5 (Loss, 16-7-3-1)

 

18-March-2005 – Watchmen management weighs in on Honey-Garlic incident

LEDUC – In an exciting day for Watchmen hockey drama fans, the Watchmen management has quickly sniped back following a press conference held today by Nycholat’s agent.  The follow statement was issued:

“Mr. Meehan's unfortunate handling of the Honey Garlic fiasco today, in no way reflects what we, the Watchmen hockey franchise represent. Mr.Meehan speaks for himself, not the Watchmen, it's players or Mr. Nycholat. It was bad enough that Mr. Nycholat was caught doing something he shouldn't have and should be thankful that the league is letting the team handle this internally.  It is agents like Meehan that are at the root of a lot of these problems; disrespecting team ownership and driving players salaries up.  Why do you think we had to let Barker go?  If the ERHL would institute a salary cap, we wouldn’t have to let fan favourite’s like Barker get away.

I am sure if we were to hear Mr. Nycholat’s statement in his own words, he would be very embarrassed and apologetic light of what transpired today.

The Watchmen franchise is a team engrained in the community and as such its players must adhere to certain standards and rules.  There are a lot of kids who look up to these guys and what kind of example would we be setting if we let our players eat Honey-Garlic wings?  The next thing you know they’d be playing Ultimate Frisbee.

Let me remind the press that Mr. Nycholat is an employee of the Watchmen franchise and as such, we apologize on his behalf to our fans, the media, the ERHL board, Division 2 teams and to our players for this embarrassing situation that seems to have reached a new low today. 

Mr. Nycholat's punishment will be handled internally and rest assured swiftly.

Now let’s put this issue to rest.  We have seven more W’s to get.”

 

18-March-2005 – Nycholat’s agent hold press conference

RED DEER – Official Press Conference held by Mr. Don Meehan.

Earlier today Mr Don Meehan, agent for high profile hockey players Jerome Iginla, Dion Phaneuf and ERHL rearguard Corwin Nycholat held a press conference.  It was anticipated he would finally break the silence today and clear the air regarding the Boston Pizza Honey-Garlic chicken wing fiasco. The fiasco started following the Watchmen’s March 4th match versus the Brewers.  The game itself was described as the best all around performance of the Watchmen in team history. At a team gathering at Boston Pizza after the game Corwin Nycholat, who earlier in the evening helped his team to an important win by posting a goal and an assist and being credited with the third star, was caught ordering honey-garlic chicken wings. 

At the press conference earlier today Mr Meehan had this to say:

Meehan: "My client is certainly saddened by these turn of events"

Mike Toth: "Does your client apologize for ordering Honey garlic wings?"

Meehan: "What?"

Toth: "The chicken wing fiasco"

Meehan: "I have no idea what you are talking about?"

Toth: "Nycholat obviously knew his team-mates and management would be unhappy with his decision to break ranks. Is your client sorry for this?"

Meehan: "Toth, My client has no comment on that matter. As far as I am concerned, until Boston Pizza decides to prepare their chicken wings with Tex-Mex coatings, my client can order whatever the hell he wants! I truly think the blame should be placed on team management for putting my client in that position. If they would have went to Cherry's in the first place, all this could have been avoided."

Toth: "But.."

Meehan: "Do not interrupt me again I am not finished. My client’s reason for holding this press conference is that he wishes to express his sadness at the recent decision of team-mate and friend Matt Rookie-Sensation Barker to retire from the Watchmen. Nycholat certainly understands, but had hoped the team could stay together for several more years. However, today’s conference is in regards to his response to Barker’s decision: My client has decided to put his coveted green hockey pants up for auction on E-bay the proceeds from this sale going towards airfare from Maryland to Edmonton for Barker to play next season."

Toth: "Your kidding...How much does your client expect from the auction?"

Meehan: "Through this sale my client expects Barker will be able to play at least three quarters of the season."

Toth: " Your kidding..."

Meehan: "My client feels that because team and league management have not asked him to replace the hockey pants officially – unlike team-mate Wilkinson’s ND Hounds red pants I might add – they must be an ERHL cherished item. If they had an ERHL hockey hall of fame..."

Toth: "Your kidding...  Does this mean he’s going to order Honey-Garlic wings again in the future?"

Meehan:  "What are you retarded?  I said I had no further comment."

End of Transcript.

 

18-March-2005 – Barker announces retirement

LEDUC – Watchmen management issued the following statement today:

“I am deeply saddened to announce that Matt R-S Barker has tentatively handed in his retirement papers from the Watchmen Winter hockey Franchise.

Matt is looking at taking a job in the Baltimore, Maryland area to be closer to his beloved wife.

While the bad news is we will be losing a friend and a hell of a hockey player, the good news is we get throw a heck of a party.

We get to enjoy Matt's antics for a little while longer, however, as he is expected to finish up his career with the Watchmen Summer Squad and then moving on to the Hockey hotbed of the south in August.”

While management is offering a positive public face, rumours are swirling that Barker had been looking to get out of Edmonton after being sent to the Yoho minor league last year.  Others speculate that his desire for a more serious level of play led him to look elsewhere as the Watchmen have too many players, playing “just for fun”, and aren’t solemn enough after a loss.  While there is another rumour that he is simply too distraught after the Honey-Garlic incident of March 4th and simply couldn’t play another year with people who obviously showed so little respect for the team’s code of conduct. 

While Barker is expected to issue a statement after this Sunday’s game against the Timberwolves, he could be reached for comment.  These divisive rumours are the last thing the struggling Watchmen need as they face the hottest team in Division 2 this weekend in their final Albert’s family restaurant classic of the season.

 

16-March-2005 – Timberwolves continue to surge, but it may be too little, too late.

OLD STRATHCONA – The Timberwolves have come to life in the second half of the season knocking off every team in the division at least once in the months of February and March as they surge for the final playoff spot.  With only three games and six potential points remaining in their season, they face an uphill battle to catch the Landex Shockers who are currently sitting three points up on the Timberwolves.  The Shockers have an ever-important game in hand in a division 3 cross-over match.  The Shockers are also playing very well recently and with their magic number sitting at 2 the gap will be difficult and likely impossible for the Timberwolves to close.

There could however be some shifting within the top four positions in the last few weeks of March.  The Northern Stars could catch the Watchmen if they win all three of their remaining games.  These two teams face-off to end their respective regular seasons, and this four point match could decide first place if the Watchmen are not able to defeat both the Eagles and the Timberwolves in their other two match-ups. 

The Brewers and the Shockers could also very well trade places.  Assuming that the Shockers will win their cross-over game, they are only a single point behind the Brewers, and with the teams lining up on March 26th, a win for the Shockers could vault them into third place.

The WatchNET is predicting the final standings to be:

1.      Watchmen – 40 points

2.      Northern Stars – 39 points

3.      Landex Shockers – 33 points

4.      Brewers – 32 points

 

15-March-2005 – Controversy brewing after Honey-Garlic incident

LEDUC – Controversy seems to have crept into the Watchmen Dressing room in light of Nycholat's recent defiance of the Honey Garlic protocol after a recent win.

Since that night, some cracks in the armor have been showing and as a result may have contributed to their recent lose to the Shockers. Coach Wilkinson was quoted "I didn't make much of it at the time, but now that I think about it, it was a bit of a slap in the face. Let's not make too much of this though. I will be talking with him. I'm sure he was just caught up in the moment "

Preston the kid was more blunt..."He's (Nycholat) a prima donna. He thinks he can do whatever he wants."

Team Captain Chris left wing Girard weighed in on the matter. "One minute the guys a hero (the Batman incident), the next he's pulling this s*#t."

Tim the glove Weis had this to say. "When I first saw, I could not believe it! I thought Wilkinson was going to start flipping tables. He was with his wife though, and I know she frowns on him making a scene. She should come out more actually..."

Nycholat could not be reached for comment.

While Coach Wilkinson does not want things blown out of proportion, word is that the room is deeply divided as to how to deal with this deliberate act of defiance. With the playoffs fast approaching, turmoil is the last thing the Watchmen need. Nycholat would do well to make sure the boys get an extra plate of Tex Mex on the next outing and put this to bed.

More to come as we follow this gripping storyline...

With files from Lighthouse press agency

 

14-March-2005 – Watchmen haven’t put together back-to-back wins since January

EDMONTON – “I could whip out the excuse-master 5000, but I won't... they played on the same brutal, chipped up, you are taking your life in your own hands, ice that we did, Wilkinson was quoted as saying after Sunday night’s 4-2 against the Landex Shockers.  

Outshot 31-25, and outscored 4-2 the Watchmen crashed and burned on their last skate at Westmount Arena.  There were quite a few blatant mistakes that cost the boys goals, but once again the inability to put the puck in the net when it mattered proved costly.  With 3 of the top forwards not dressed (Girard, Blue and Simpson) play amongst the forwards was sloppy and offensive chances were few and far between.  While back-up tender Chris Grant stood on his head in the later stages of the second and third periods to keep the game close.

Kudos goes to the Shockers for a good clean game once again as penalties were kept to a minimum, as is often the case when these two teams meet.

Scoring for the Watchmen were Milne from Wilkinson and Barker from Nisky and Wilkinson.

Next week’s game against the Timberwovles must be a better effort, as the teams fighting for playoff spots seem to have been playing in playoff mode for some time now, while the Watchmen are on cruise control.  If the boys in purple don’t up their game they could be in for an early golfing season.

Three Stars

1)      Jon Steele (Shockers)

2)      Travis Lidstone (Shockers)

3)      Cory Wilkinson

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 2 vs. Landex Shockers 4 (Loss, 16-7-3-1)

 

10-March-2005 – Watchmen show up to down the Brewers

EDMONTON – The Watchmen put together arguably their best collective game in the history of the franchise on Saturday night skating to a convincing 6-0 win over the Brewers, one of the league’s top teams.  The WatchNET reporters took 5 days to simply bask in the warm glow of the game sheet before filing the post-game report. 

The Watchmen opened the scoring just over a minute into the game as Marv the Chimney Blue swatted in a sweet pass from Corporal Wilkinson.  While the Brewers appeared to be very fond of Wilkinson’s nickname, they were not able to keep up with him as he would go on to collect two more points on the evening.  Meanwhile the Watchmen dominated the first period with Preston the Kid and toe-drag Girard each one-timing in a pass.  While the Watchmen offence was impressive, their defensive play, led by the solid play of Russ Misselbrook, was even better shutting the Brewers down to only 2 shots on net for the entire period. 

The Brewers did rally for a bit in the second period, but were unable to capitalize and Wilkinson finished off a drop pass from Nycholat to extend the Watchmen’s lead to 4.  Cam Tazer Phillips slid in a highlight reel goal early in the third to all but put the game away.  With the game out of reach, things got a little ugly and fortunately Nycholat was able to extend the Watchmen’s lead to 6-0 invoking the running of the last 5 minutes of the game, and enabling the Watchmen to shut out their second opponent in three games.

Kudos goes out to the referees who called an even game, letting the players play for the better part of the game, and stepped in to prevent things from spriling out of control near the end, preventing a possible injury to all but the poor mop bucket.  Kudos also goes out collectively to the Watchmen for not getting sucked into the childish antics.

After the game at Boston Pizza, confidently out of the closet Nycholat ordered himself a plate of Honey-Garlic wings, perhaps because it is not a contract year, or perhaps knowing that Wilkinson would simply be in too good a mood to make a scene.  Notably absent from the BP’s post-game gathering was Dr. Nisky Jacknisky, who also missed Tuesday trip to Don Cherry’s making him 0-2 on the week, and struggling to maintain his fourth chicken wing.

The Watchmen face the Landex Shockers at Westmount on Sunday in a rematch of the game that started the Watchmen’s worst skid of the season.  With the Timberwolves nipping their heels for the final playoff spot, the Shockers will be looking for another big win after smoking the Northern Stars this week 6-1.

Watchmen Goals

Brewers Goals

Three Stars

1)      Russ Misselbrook

2)      Cory Wilkinson

3)      Corwin Honey-Garlic Nycholat

 

Game Result:  Watchmen 6 vs. Brewers 0 (Win, 16-6-3-1)

 

3-March-2005 – Watchmen head to the doctors office

OLD STRATHCONA –Stay-at-home defenseman Batman* Nycholat made a trip to the optometrist to get contact lenses after playing his entire career without.  His newly improved vision was evident prior to the March 3rd game with the Watchmen feeder team (U of A Explosions) when he noted: “They have banners in this rink?  Wow the Bears are a good hockey franchise.”  This is the first of his 2-step/2-order of magnitude program for performance enhancement heading into April.

Meanwhile, Watchmen goaltender Tim Weis was out this morning for pre-game skate as a left-winger/cherry picker.  Shortly after scoring a hat-trick, he collided hard with one of his team-mates while cutting across the ice and went down hard.  He ended up with a gash on his chin that forced him to shave his signature beard in order to get stitches (although he never actually bothered getting the stitches).  He is questionable for tonight’s big game against the Brewers.

Meanwhile, the Watchmen management has been contemplating new lines after examining the following graph posted on the Watchmen point tracker, in an attempt to restart the team’s goal scoring.

* mild-mannered chemist by day, crime-fighter extraordinaire by night

 

2-March-2005 – Management: “Not panicking yet”

LEDUC – The WatchNET staff caught up with the F-Bomb to elaborate on his suggestion last night that it was time to shake up the roster:

“We are not in panic mode. This is a bump in the road. I feel a change is in order because things have gotten stale and stagnant. We have stopped scoring for some reason. We need to inject some *#@%&$ vigour into this line-up. Now get that *!%$#@ camera out of my face!”

Is it any wonder our Fan Club is so foul mouthed?

 

1-March-2005 – Watchmen continue to struggle

EDMONTON – The Watchmen came out of the gates running, and jumped out to a 2 goal lead, but struggled to put the puck in the net as the Northern Stars clawed their way back into the game.  Notching a goal in the first, another in the second and two more in the third, the Northern Stars shut down the Watchmen offence and took the game 4-2.  There was a lot of dirty play, as the things escalated to the point where elbows, knee-on-knees and even slew-footing the goalie were allowed to go unpunished.  While everyone prefers to let the players play the game, this is rec hockey, and no one wants to have their knee blown out before a 2-minute minor is called.  Nonetheless, the Watchmen can’t blame anything on the refs as they have fallen to 5th place in scoring in the division.

While the Watchmen still cling to first place by 3 points, they are 1-3 in their last 4 outings, averaging only 2.5 goals for per game, less then half their season average.  Five games remain in the season, and the Watchmen face each team in the division one more time before the playoffs begin in April.  They have a chance to put this drought behind them and gear up for the playoffs.  Corwin Batman Nycholat is taking the first bold step by purchasing contact lenses for the Spring showdown, while the squad is clearly worried about their playoff physique, as only 2 pounds of chicken wings were collectively polished off by the Watchmen after the game.

Northern Stars Goals

Watchmen Goals

Three Stars

1)      Kelly Symborski (Stars)

2)      Russ Misselbrook

3)      Tom Jacknisky

 

Game Result:  Northern Stars 4 vs. Watchmen 2 (Loss, 15-6-3-1)

 

26-February-2005 – Watchmen finish February with an exhibition draw

EDMONTON – With a 10 rest in their ERHL schedule Watchmen management lined up an exhibition game against the Telus Titans at the U of A Saturday afternoon.  The game was played at a high intensity and relatively chippy for an exhibition game, as the teams skated to a 3-3 draw.  Tim I think I’m going to puke Weis gained a new appreciation for his team mates by dressing as a right-winger for the game, while Glen the Shoe played between the pipes.  Weis wasn’t able to generate any sort of offense or even take any good photographs from the bench – apparently there is a reason he plays nets.  The Watchmen had several chances but couldn’t seem to bury the puck, a theme that they have carried for the better part of February, as they have fallen from 1st to 4th in goals scored in the division.  With February drawing to a close the boys will be looking to gear up the offence as the season winds down.  The Watchmen play two monster games this week against the Northern Stars on Tuesday and the Brewers on Friday as the drive for the playoffs begins.  The Watchmen’s magic number is 4 to claim the division title, although with the way the rest of the squads are playing these days the finishing anywhere between 1st and 4th may not matter a whole lot in April.

Three Stars (not counted for overall Watchmen cup*)

1)      Chris Girard

2)      Shaun poke check Mills

3)      Matt you might as well look for a rebound Barker

*Oh yes, there will be awards this year.

Game Result:  Telus 3 vs. Watchmen 3

 

23-February-2005 – Showdown at Millennium Place

EDMONTON – Watchmen veterans Wilkinson and Girard went to the optional skate this morning at MP place talking politics and their favorite TV show “the Apprentice” like any other morning. The mood was light and life was good.  Wilkinson had no idea what was in store for him…

A good solid game was going and Wilkinson was working off some rust after sitting out last week.

Wilkinson had some pepper in his step and made Girard dizzy several times on the rush.  Eventually, Girard felt enuff was enuff and introduced Wilkinson to his new synergy stick.  “Those synergies are expensive, but boy do they make a nice ‘pop’ when you hit a guy correctly” Girard said afterwards. “Oh, was that out loud?  I mean, he ran into me”.

Wilkinson was heard spitting all kinds of verbiage as he left the ice in withering pain. Wilkinson is listed as day to day and should recover nicely for next weeks match against the Stars.  Their friendship, however, is questionable...

 

21-February-2005 – No walks in the park

EDMONTON – Division 2 is as close as it has been in years.  With 6 games left in the regular season and a possible 12 points up for grabs no team is eliminated from the playoffs and only the Watchmen have clinched a spot.  The Timberwolves are 5 points out of the final playoff spot currently held by the Landex Shockers, who are the only team in the division with an extra game in hand.  While the Timberwolves have their work cut out for them, they have proven they are up for a run after knocking off the top two teams, the Watchmen and the Northern Stars 9-5 and 11-1 in their last two outings.  The Timberwolves face off against the Shockers twice more this season in games that will likely decide their playoff fate.  Meanwhile, the Cameron Eagles, who are on a several month long losing streak only lost 2-1 and 2-0 in their last two outings against the Watchmen, proving that on any given night it is anyone’s game.

The playoffs, and their outcome are anything but decided and to date it has been a strong, competitive division.  Hopefully none of the greedy NHLPA players who are looking for work decide to join one of the Div 2 squads and screw that up.

 

19-February-2005 – Weis gets his first shut-out of the season, making good on his guaranteed win

EDMONTON – Despite only dressing two lines and four d-men, the Watchmen came out guns a-blazing Saturday night against the Cameron Eagles at Westmount Arena.  Desperate to get their first point in February, the Watchmen pounded the puck at the Eagles net, only to find the Eagles’ goaltender standing in the way.  The Watchmen notched 10 shots in the first period before the Eagles got one, but found themselves tied 0-0 after 10 minutes of play.  The Watchmen finally scored when Chris toe-drag Girard pounded home a slap shot from the hash marks after failing to capitalize on a penalty shot only seconds earlier.  “There’s no point in scoring unless you can get another guy an assist” Girard said.  Despite spending over half the period on the power-play the Watchmen had to settle for a one-goal lead going into the second period.

The Watchmen continued to dominate the play, and continued to be frustrated by the Eagles’ tender.  After his performance last week, the Watchmen made sure not too allow too many shots on their own goalie.  Nonetheless, Weis appeared to be back in form – making the stops he had to in order to preserve the one-goal lead through two periods. 

With their flare for excitement, the Watchmen took 4 straight penalties allowing the Eagles a chance to get back in the game.  However it was Matt Barker who stole the puck and rush in with Russ Simpson on a 2-on-1, who finished off a beautiful pass from Barker.  Commenting on his second assist on the evening, Barker noted: “He [Hurst] was clearly fooled by my choice earlier to shoot on the 3-on-1 and was expecting me to shoot again.  Now that the decoy had been set perfectly, I’ll I had to do was feed it to Simpson, who was there to pull the trigger.”

Despite a parade to the penalty box to finish the game, the Watchmen were able to preserve the win, and a shut-out for their goalie.  “I thought they looked good” said player-coach Wilkinson after the game, who watched and photographed the game from the stands while sitting out his one-game sentence.  Meanwhile on the ice the players were getting ready for the playoffs by jockeying for such coveted final standings as the most penalty minutes, as Girard and Vlahadamis made impressive strides, while only 5 points separate the Watchmen’s top 4 scorers.  The only result that seems to be firmed up is the punching-bag award, which Preston the Kid appears to have a lock on.

After getting 2nd and 3rd stars respectively, Barker and Weis apparently decided that perhaps it was below them to hang out with the “non-starring” players, and boycotted the ceremonial trip to Mr. Cherry’s.  A decision to dock them on their “chicken/tofu wing” rating is pending, then again it’s not like they ordered on their own bill.

The Watchmen have a break from the ERHL until the first week of March when the face the Northern Stars and the Brewers on March 1st and 4th, two games that could decide the final standings.  In the meantime, they’ve set up an exhibition game against Telus February the 26th at the U of A @ 4:15.

Watchmen Goals

Cameron Eagles Goals

Three Stars

1)      Jon Hurst (Eagles)

2)      Matt 3-on-1 Barker

3)      Tim Weis

Game Result:  Watchmen 2 vs. Cameron Eagles 0 (Win, 15-5-3-1)

 

18-February-2005 – Watchmen to be short staffed Saturday night

EDMONTON – The Watchmen will be without household names, Dana the Pillar Gray, Cory Corporal F-Bomb Wilkinson and Corwin Honey-Garlic Nycholat, for Saturday night’s match-up against the struggling Cameron Eagles.  The Watchmen are in need of a win to halt their 2 game losing skid.  Gray and Nycholat are healthy scratches as they are out of town this weekend, while Wilkinson is serving a one-game suspension for thuggery in the closing minutes against the Timberwolves.  Farm team utility man Nathan Deisman is unavailable to fill in any gaps, so the Watchmen will be hoping for a return to the line-up of Cliffy McClain who has missed the last few matches.  While the Eagles have struggled recently the Watchmen were only able to net a pair of goals the last time they met and so they boys in purple will need to find some extra firepower.

Players and fans should note that an error was posted on the Watchmenhockey.net webpage earlier this week, and that Saturday’s game time is 8:45pm at Westmount Arena.  Thanks to our editing staff at MJ Barker Ltd. for noticing the problem.

 

13-February-2005 – Unable to do it on their own, the Eagles clinch a playoff spot for the Watchmen

EDMONTON – Having been critical of the officiating in their previous match-up against the Shockers, the Watchmen set out to prove just how easy it is to have an off-night.  The Timberwolves, who are still in the running for the last playoff spot handed the Watchmen their first back-to-back loss of the season.  The Watchmen did however clinch a playoff spot, as the Eagles continued their losing skid into its 12th game.

Although they scored several times early on, the Watchmen were not able to keep the Timberwolves’ offence at bay.  Scrambling defensively, combined with a few poorly timed penalties showed that the Watchmen’s collective heads were not in the game.  To make matters worse, apparent referee point-begging took place; the ultimate Watchmen no-no.

A particularly poor effort was put forth by goaltender Tim Weis who having just returned from California, fortunately had some leftover sunscreen on the back of his neck to protect him from the red light that was lit behind him 9 times in the first two periods.  “He was terrible” Rachel Nycholat, the President of the Watchmen fan club was quoted as saying.  “I mean %%@#$, that was some of the @#$^#* worst $^!$^* I have ever had the displeasure of witnessing.  I pay a lot of $*@-^%&#$ money for my season’s tickets, and to see a goaltending performance like that was painful – and trust me, I know what bad %^$%$$ hockey looks like.  You won’t see me here next week” *.  WatchNET staff caught up with Weis for a post-game interview:

WN: “So how does it feel to cost your team 2 points?”

TW: “I think that’s a little harsh, yeah I played poorly, but I think collectively we didn’t put our best effort forward.”

WN: “No; from where I stood, the blame falls squarely on you.”

TW: “What can I say?  There was a guy left open in the slot who kept getting fed the puck.”

WN: “Yeah, and after the 8th time maybe you might have caught on.”

TW:  “I don’t think any of the goals were particularly weak.”

WN: “Maybe not, but a goalie’s gotta make one or two big stops when it matters – that’s your job.”

TW: “Ok, ok, I stunk it up, I apologized, what do you want from me?  God you media are savages!  Anyway, the way I see it is that our season is going a lot like our games – a bit rough in the beginning, a strong period and a half, followed by a 5-minute meltdown at the end of the second period, then we finish the game hard.  I’m confident we’ll bounce back, I’ll go so far as guaranteeing a win on Saturday night.”

WN: “That’s saying a lot for a guy who gave up 9 goals… you should be happy if you can dress yourself.”

Trying to take some of the heat off his battered goaltender, player/coach Wilkinson shouldered some of the blame: “Obviously that report card went straight to everyone’s head.  These guys are clearly getting too much TLC from me, and I’ll have to find new ways to motivate them for playoffs.”

The silver lining is that the Watchmen still hold onto first place in the division by 3 points, thanks to the Brewers spanking the Northern Stars 13-6.  This week’s results also demonstrated the competitiveness of the division, where no team can be taken lightly.

In other news, the Watchmen had a weekend off in February and in March, both of which have now been booked for action:  an exhibition game has scheduled against Telus on February 26th at Clare Drake (U of A) Arena at 4:15 pm, and the ERHL is proposing to move the Watchmen-Timberwolves rematch from March 23rd to Sunday March 20th at 9:00 am.

* Quotes may not be exact (or completely fabricated); it was hard to hear over Jacknisky discussing his son’s career as a dancer.

Watchmen Goals

Timberwolves Goals

Three Stars

1)      Curtis Warwaruk (Timberwolves)

2)      Derek Graham (Timberwolves)

3)      Jason Norgard (Timberwolves)

Game Result:  Watchmen 5 vs. Timberwolves 9 (Loss, 14-5-3-1)

 

5-February-2005 – Blind chicken gets the worm

EDMONTON – A poor effort put forth by the Watchmen was matched in ineptitude, and then far surpassed by the worst officiating in the history of hockey.

Little can be said for how the Watchmen played, on the other hand the Landex Shockers are proving they are a force to be reckoned with; knocking off the Northern Stars and the Watchmen in their last two games.  The two teams however, were able to agree on the spectacle that was put on by the referees Friday night.  Having watched a lot of hockey with a lot of different teams, I can say that I have never seem both teams laughing in astonishment about the same calls, and even calls going in their favour.  Several conversations during and after the game between opposing squads confirmed that this was not just a one-sided perception of what happened.  While the referees certainly did not cost the Watchmen the game (they took care of that on their own), they did ruin what could have been a good game.

Watchmen Goal

Shockers Goals

Three Stars

1)      Ref #1

2)      Ref #2

3)      Adam Giesbrecht (Shockers)

Game Result:  Watchmen 1 vs. Landex Shockers 4 (Loss, 14-4-3-1)

 

1-February-2005 – Wilkinson teaches Weis a lesson at early morning skate

SHERWOOD PARK – In the warm wake of the refineries and the soft glow of the gas flare, Watchmen players Wilkinson and Weis were spotted getting some extra ice time in at Millenium Place Tuesday morning.  Pitted against each other for a good part of the game, Wilkinson netted a pair of goals against his Watchmen team-mate.  “He just so small and cute out there, you may not take him seriously”, Weis was quoted after the shinny match “but he’s deceptively quick… shifty I guess you could say, or squirrelly.”  Puck bunnies and autograph seekers take note: WatchNET staff has confirmed rumours that the two will be at it again tomorrow morning (that’s 6:15 AM kids).  Weis said “I guess I’ll have to keep an eye on him tomorrow, I don’t want his head getting too big before Friday’s big game.”  The Watchmen are up against the offensive Landex Shockers.  While the Watchmen only need 2 more points to clinch a playoff berth, they will need a win to put some distance between them and the Northern Stars who were downed by the Shockers Monday night 6-5 for their second loss in a row.  Meanwhile, the rest of the team ought to watch their head doesn’t swell after management shows their sensitive side, heaping rave reviews on the Watchmen at the 2/3rd point in the season.

 

29-January-2005 – Coaching change paying off in spades as Girard continues to fill the net

EDMONTON – Chris the Flying Frenchman Girard is flying high having netted three goals and six points over the last two games after switching wings with Corporal Wilkinson.  “It’s working” Wilkinson said after the game, commenting on the change that seems to have opened up a lane for Girard in the slot.  “If I had a shot like that I’d shoot it every time I got the puck” the Kid Kulmatycki noted after Girard pounded in his second goal of the morning.

Dressing an impressive three full lines and five defensemen for a 7:15 AM game, the Watchmen skated well against a solid Brewers squad.  Girard opened the scoring five minutes into the first period shuffling in from the high slot to beat the Brewers goalie.  Matt Rookie Sensation Barker followed up shortly afterwards by potting a short-side goal, putting the Watchmen up 2-0.  Things were looking good for the Watchmen as the Brewers took a penalty with five minutes to go in the period, but Watchmen goaltender let the Brewers back in the game by letting a soft, shorthanded goal.  On top of being a shot that should have been saved, the timing was particularly poor to let in a stinker reversing the momentum of the game.

The Brewers tied the game at 2 on another shorthanded goal, this time on a breakaway, again to the glove side.   After watching their lead evaporate, the Watchmen were able to shut down the explosive Brewers offence, while Weis made sure nothing else got past his glove.  Girard put the Watchmen back on top with the aforementioned laser beam from the slot, sending the game into the third period at a score of 3-2. 

Despite ultimately out shooting the Watchmen 34-28, the Brewers were not able to capitalize again.  The Watchmen kept the Brewers at bay thanks to some solid back-checking notably by Shaun Mills and Russ Misselbrook, and solid fore-checking notably by Russ Simpson and Cam Tazer Phillips.  Dr. Nisky Jacknisky added some insurance at the midway point of the third period on a goal assisted by Kulmatycki and Vlahadmis, while R-S Barker iced the game with his second goal of the day on an empty-netter in the dying seconds.

Hats off to the referees who called great game keeping things under control and to the Brewers for a clean, hard-fought battle.  Hats also off to the Kid and the Tazer for upping their drumstick ratings at the post-game meeting at Albert’s.  The Watchmen take their six game winning streak into Friday’s tilt against the offensive powerhouse Landex Shockers.  Stay tuned early next week for Management’s 2/3rds report card.

Watchmen Goals

Brewers Goals

Three Stars

1)      Chris the Flying Frenchman Girard

2)      Matt Rookie Sensation Barker

3)      Tom Dr. Nisky Jacknisky

Game Result:  Watchmen 5 vs. Brewers 2 (Win, 14-3-3-1)

 

25-January-2005 – Seven different Watchmen score to retain first place

EDMONTON – There are few things worse for a goalie than giving up a goal on the first shot of the game, but that is what happened to Watchmen netminder Tim Weis Tuesday night against the Northern Stars.  Down one goal early on, the Watchmen looked a little nervous against the red hot Northern Stars whose 10-game winning streak shot them out of the basement and onto the Watchmen’s heels threatening first place with a win.  Fortunately for Weis, he dug himself out of the hole with a big 2-on-1 stop moments later keeping the Northern Stars at bay until Marv Young Gun Blue batted a pass from Preston the Kid Kulmatycki through the legs of the Stars goalie to even the score with three minutes to go in the first. 

Back on a level playing field, the Watchmen found their confidence and their stride exploding for 4 unanswered goals in the first half of the second period.  Misselbrook, Gray, Mills and Jacknisky all tallied for the Watchmen.  Suddenly finding themselves up 5-1, the Watchmen gained a little too much confidence and got caught failing to clear their own zone a couple of times allowing the Stars to crawl back into the game.  The 5-3 score didn’t last long as Dino Vlahadamis whistled in a low shot from the point 30 seconds after the Stars 3rd goal.

The 4-goal lead was restored when Girard one-timed a Wilkinson drop-pass into the back of the net, a sight almost repeated only moments later but this time the cross-bar was recipient of the bullet.  Despite being down 4 goals the Stars did press in the third and ended up out shooting the Watchmen 34-28 by the end of the game, but were only able to tally one more goal finishing the game 3 goals and 3 points in the standings behind the Watchmen.

The jury is still out as to why opponents hate Preston the Kid so much, as he was mugged from behind twice last night, including a high stick in the face and a two-handed cross check from behind just 3.5 feet south of the referee, bringing his season’s total of attacks-from-behind-received up to six.  Perhaps he is skating too fast, frequently getting ahead of the opponents, or perhaps it is just that the opponents know that the refs also hate the Kid and that they can get away with cross-checking him in the head.  Either way, kudos goes to the Kid for not getting a penalty for bleeding on someone.

The Watchmen are at it again 7:15 Saturday morning to try to wash the filth out of their proverbial bed that was deposited there the last time they faced the Brewers.

Three Stars

1)      Chris Cross Bar Girard

2)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

3)      Tim if you get out shot and win the game the goalie gets a star, those are the rules Weis

Game Result:  Watchmen 7 vs. Northern Stars 4 (Win, 13-3-3-1)

 

23-January-2005 – SPECIAL REPORT: Clash of the Titans Tuesday night

OLD STRATHCONA – First Place in Division 2 is on the line this week as The Watchmen go toe-to-toe with the Northern Stars at Westmount Arena.  The Northern Stars go into Tuesday night’s match on a 10-game winning streak, who haven’t lost since the Brewers beat them 6-5 on November 6th.  The Watchmen and the Northern Stars have split the season series 1-1-1, with the last tilt going 4-2 in favour of the Stars.  The Watchmen’s previous loss was also against the Brewers just over a month ago, but they have gone on to win 4 games in a row since.  The Northern Stars will be without their 4th leading scorer Jason Samograd, who is sitting out a one game suspension.  The Watchmen, on the other hand are expecting a full line up, thanks in part to some heroic efforts by Corporal F-Bomb Wilkinson, who plans to drive to Fort McMurray immediately after the 11:00pm game for an 8:00am meeting in the oil patch – that’s dedication kids.

 

15-January-2005 – Watchmen dominate, but only squeak out a win

EDMONTON – The Watchmen put together a solid team effort Saturday night, controlling the play from beginning to end but were only able to knock in two against the Cameron Eagles goaltender.  The Watchmen took control of the game early on and didn’t let up, even when they were killing off their many penalty minutes.  Despite the play being in their zone for the better part of the game, the Eagles did a good job of keeping the Watchmen to the outside.  While they surrendered a considerable amount of shots, they did a good job crowding their own net to prevent rebounds or other good scoring chances.  This play required their goalie to fend off a lot of shots, and for the most part he proved to be up to the task. 

Matt Rookie Sensation Barker was able to bulge the twine (or tickle it at least) as he slipped a puck in between the Eagles’ tender’s legs halfway through the first.  The Watchmen continued to press but were not able to put results up on the scoreboard that matched their efforts.  Controlling the play without being able to score inevitably sets up the opportunities for the team on the receiving end of the shelling to get the odd rush.  Things got a little ugly when the dumb guy who always wears two different colour socks got his second rush of the evening.  Nathan Deisman was half a step behind him when he tripped and the two slid straight into the Watchmen netminder.  Instead of trying to not hurt anyone or get hurt, like any normal human being, dumb guy cocked his hand and sucker punched Watchmen goaltender Tim Weis in the head.  Dumb guy then proceeded to turtle as he was on the receiving end of some well deserved retaliatory blows from Weis.  Deisman and Weis both ended up with penalties while dumb guy got nothing, setting the stage for some future ugliness.  Nonetheless, justice was restored as the Eagles failed to capitalize on their 2 man powerplay, and when Weis turned aside dumb guy on his third break away of the night, keeping the score 1-0 until midway in the second period.

The play got a bit chippy and both teams spent their fair share of time in the sin bin.  The Watchmen were able to take a 2-0 lead on one of their powerplays when Barker and Wilkinson cornered the Eagles defender who was trying to rag the puck behind his net.  Instead of icing it when he had the chance he coughed it up to the point where Nathan Deisman rifled a shot causing the crossbar to ring out with a crisp E sharp as the puck sailed into the back of the net.  Noticing that his squad was playing too well to allow the Eagles back into the game, Weis took it upon himself to fulfill this Watchmen ritual as he got caught cheating on a two-on-one.  This crappy powerplay goal brought the game to 2-1, which is where it stayed until the final buzzer.  Despite not being able to score, the Watchmen kept their composure until the end of the game even when killing penalties, and like the score, the shots ended 2:1 in favour of the Watchmen.  Honourable mention goes out to Corporal F-Bomb Cory Wilkinson for almost single-handedly keeping the puck in the Eagles’ zone on a penalty kill, to Cam Tazer Phillips, who preserved the win by controlling the puck and the killing off the last seconds of the game with the Eagles pressing, to Russ Misselbrook for vaulting back into the top ten in PIM after a four game quiet spell, and to Darby Wilkinson for outperforming CFB Wilkinson at Don Cherry’s after the game who was debating even attending the post-game wrap-up and then only choked down an embarrassing one pound of chicken wings.

Three Stars

1)      Matt Rookie Sensation Barker

2)      Corporal F-Bomb Cory Wilkinson

3)      Nathan Deisman

*some may argue that the Eagles’ goalie should have got a star, but hey no one is stopping them from making their own webpage.

Game Result:  Cameron Eagles 1 vs. Watchmen 2 (Win, 12-3-3-1)

 

12-January-2005 – Watchmen’s attack balanced half-way through the season

EDMONTON – In order to compensate for the low quality coverage of the last Watchmen game, the WatchNET management has re-analysed some of the game by game statistics, and found an impressive result:  all three lines have almost identical combined point totals after 17 games (59,59 and 58), with the defence also chipping in a fair amount of offence.  This equal distribution of scoring is in part an explanation of how the Watchmen are hanging on to first place without a single scorer in the league’s top ten, and is clearly reflective of player/coach Wilkinson’s egalitarian, in fact bordering on communist views on running a sports franchise.

Three Stars leaders at season midpoint (10 points for 1st star, 9 for 2nd and 8 for 3rd)

1)      Cam Tazer Phillips (60 points)

2)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki (43 points)

3)      Corporal F-Bomb Wilkinson (35 points)

 

10-January-2005 – Embedded journalist gets inside scoop during Watchmen’s win

EDMONTON – A WatchNET reporter/photographer got a behind the scenes look at Watchmen hockey from on their bench Saturday night.  While most of the effort was focused on capturing images of the boys in purple in action, our look behind the scenes was also able to learn more about the sounds and smells on the pine. 

The Timberwolves only dressed a handful of players, however, instead of the Watchmen skating them into the ground, they allowed the Timberwolves to keep pace by slowing their game.  The Watchmen were able to jump out to a 1-0 lead early, on a goal by Preston the Kid from Dr. Nisky Jacknisky and Rookie Sensation Barker.  Despite badly out-shooting the Timberwolves, the Watchmen were not able to finish their chances, and in the meantime left backup goalie Glen the Shoe hung out to dry on a couple of odd-man rushes.  It is of course nice to know that the Watchmen give equal opportunity for their tenders to stop 2 on 1’s regardless of who’s in between the pipes.  The Watchmen were trailing 2-1 when the WatchNET staff had to vacate the premises, however reports were later filed indicating that the Watchmen, led by two goals from Cam Tazer Phillips and a goal and an assist from blueliner Corwin Nycholat were able to bounce back to take the game 4-3. With their respective 2-point nights, Phillips moves into first place in Watchmen scoring, and Nycholat moves past Snake-bit Girard into 6th place overall, leading all defensemen offensively.  The Watchmen are now on a three game winning steak, which is tied for the longest streak they have been able to put together all season long.  The Watchmen hope to extend this streak against the Eagles on Saturday and then further it against their nemesis, the Northern Stars on January 25th.

Additional reports were filed by Honey-Garlic Freelance Writers Assoc., and Corporal F-Bomb News Services listed below:

OLD STRATHCONAI scored a beautiful (if you do not mind me saying) powerplay goal and assisted on a second goal scored by Cam. I carried the puck in to the offensive zone and gave a tape-to-tape pass to Cam as he was crossing the front of the net. Cam was able to gently tip the puck over the goalies shoulder. Glen Shoemaker was credited with an asisst on the play.  Who cares about the rest?  Oh yeah, and we won 4-3.*

SOUTH-EAST EDMONTON – We kinda played down to their level. I know as the game wore on and they started getting tired, and we dominated them in their zone.  Like, I think three shifts in a row they did not come out of their own end. We just could not get anything past the keeper. Kudos goes to him. 

It is clear that the above is some of the worst journalism in history.  The WatchNET regular staff will double their efforts to make it to the entire game to avoid future debacles.  The upshot is of course that several high quality photographs were captured, and will be available soon on the player profile pages as well as the picture gallery.

*May have been modified for content

Three Stars

1)      Cam Tazer Phillips

2)      Corwin Honey Garlic Nycholat

3)      Jason Norgard (Timberwolves)

Game Result:  Watchmen 4 vs. Timberwolves 3 (Win, 11-3-3-1)

 

2-January-2005 –Timmy re-tools as Watchmen open New Year with a win

EDMONTON – Picking up where they left off in 2004, the Watchmen did their best to blow a game at the last minute that they had dominated throughout.  Fortunately for the boys in white, they were able to hang on thanks in part to the new mitt Goaltender Tim Weis was able to pick up 2nd hand* over the holidays that takes up almost half of the net.

The Watchmen’s only scheduled cross-over game of the year on Saturday saw them pitted against the Div3 first place squad the Force.  The Watchmen were missing 3 starting defensemen, and leading scorer Marvin Blue who was serving his one game suspension for “hitting from behind”.  Nonetheless, they took control of the game early on and dominated play in the first 15 minutes to finish the frame with a 3-0 lead.  Barker, Girard and Milne all tallied for the Watchmen.

In typical Watchmen style, with the game apparently in hand it was time to look to pad the stats.  Unfortunately this strategy backfired and left the Watchmen zone relatively unattended allowing the Force to score back-to-back goals to make it a 3-2 game.  The Watchmen were able to regain their composure and their 3 goal lead thanks to an unorthodox penalty shot goal from Preston the Kid Kulmatycki, and Corporal Cory Wilkinson’s first of two as he finished off a s-w-e-e-t pass from Cam Phillips. 

The Watchmen controlled the play early on in the third period and Wilkinson finished another nice set up, this time from Girard.  Honey Garlic Nycholat popped home a shot from the high slot to put the Watchmen up 7-2 with a little over 5 minutes remaining.  The game appeared well in hand as Barker got sent to the box with an unsportsmanlike penalty for looking funny sporting his specs.  While it was the even-up call on coincidental penalties, it did mean that the Watchmen lost a power play opportunity to put the final nail in the coffin.  Instead, the Force forwards caught the Watchmen on an odd-man rush and slide in their third goal.  If there’s one thing the Watchmen like to do it is try to get back a goal that they just gave up.  Unfortunately this counter-attack mentality led to even more odd-man rushes.  While the Watchmen goaltender had turned away 3 breakaways in the game, he simply wasn’t up to the task and let in another 2 as the Watchmen got caught in 3 odd-man situations in 58 seconds allowing the Force to score 3 times and bring the game to a 7-5 score with 4 minutes left.

The Watchmen, who have a flare for the exciting, managed to take 2 penalties in the last 2 minutes, giving the Force a 6-on-3 advantage after they pulled their tender.  Fearing the wrath of the Corporal if they were to blow a 5-goal lead to a Div3 team, the Watchmen were able to keep the Force at bay despite the power-play and hang on to a 7-5 victory.

*Thank you, rich kid’s Dad

Three Stars

1)      Corporal Cory Wilkinson

2)      Cam Phillips

3)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

Game Result:  Watchmen 7 vs. Force 5 (Win, 10-3-3-1)

 

21-December-2004 –Watchmen prove they are the team to beat

EDMONTON – When the Watchmen are playing their game it is easy to see why they are finishing the first half of the season in first place.  However, when they want to they can play as poorly as needed to make a close game out of just about any tilt.  Both Watchmen teams showed up for parts of the game Monday night, as the Watchmen had streaks of dominance followed by lapses that allowed the Cameron Eagles (albeit briefly) back into a game they had been taken out of by the midway point of the second period.

After the previous night’s debacle, the Watchmen came out guns a-blazing against the Eagles, out-shooting the Eagles 12-3 in the first frame, although Chris Girard’s bullet from the slot was the only tally on the game sheet at the end of the first.  The Watchmen did blow it open in the second, beginning with a beautiful tic-tac-toe between Girard, Barker and finished by Wilkinson.  Barker went on to set up Cam Phillips who made no mistake burying the puck, Smoking (with a capital S) it by the Eagles’ tender on the glove side.  Shaun Mills put the Watchmen up 4-0 on a single-handed wrap around play he started by a well-timed pinch off the point, and finished with some dangling behind the net like he scores like this every week.

Unfortunately, it was also Mills’ accidental high stick that set up a 5-minute power play for Eagles that allowed them back into the game.  The Watchmen got a little sloppy in their own zone and the Eagles capitalized two times in the last minute of the second period to make the game interesting.  After some motivational words from management between periods, the Watchmen buckled down and traded a pair of goals from Simpson and Girard for the one they would allow in the third.

While the game ended 6-3 it was costly, as Tom Jaknisky was injured after being hit from behind only a few feet from the boards and is out indefinitely.  Blue and Mills followed the dressing room parade shortly afterwards, (Blue for ‘responding’ to Jacknisky’s assailant, and Mills for his accidental high stick drawing blood) leaving the Watchmen with 2 lines instead of the 3 they started with.  Blue will likely have to sit out the first game in January, but Mills should be back, hopefully along with Jacknisky.

In 2004 the Watchmen have shown that they can beat anyone in the division on any given night, including themselves.

Three Stars

1)      Matt Rookie Sensation Barker

2)      Chris Flying Frenchman Girard

3)      Russ Simpson

Game Result:  Watchmen 6 vs. Cameron Eagles 3 (Win, 9-3-3-1)

 

19-December-2004 –Watchmen s#*t bed against classless opponents

EDMONTON – The rest is details.

Three Stars

1)      Rent-A-Goalie (Brewers)

2)      Don Chanski (Brewers)

3)      Cam Phillips

Game Result:  Watchmen 4 vs. Brewers 6 (Loss, 8-3-3-1)

 

18-December-2004 – Big games in the next two days to finish the year

OLD STRATHCONA – The Watchmen currently sit in first place by a single point on to of the streaking Northern Stars, who have won their last 5 games, including a tilt against the Watchmen in November.  All of the division 2 teams are in action this weekend for their final game of 2004, except for the Watchmen and the Cameron Eagles, who play again Monday night before taking a 2-week break for the holidays.  With a game in hand, the Watchmen need to win at least one of their next two to stay on top heading into ’05, while two victories would give the boys some breathing room on top, to allow for the inevitable game where only 7 players will show up in mid-February.

The first game is the Albert’s Family Restaurant Breakfast Classic, this Sunday at 10:30 AM against the 3rd place Brewers, to be followed just over 36 hours later against the 4th place Cameron Eagles.  With only 5 points separating 1st from 4th, the purple and white need to keep up their current level of play so that Management doesn’t hit the bottle over the holidays.

 

11-December-2004 – Cory who?  Watchmen’s depth evident in win with short bench

EDMONTON – With Barker, Girard, Phillips and Wilkinson – 4 of the Watchmen’s 6 top scorers – missing for the game, along with defenseman Shaun Mills, the Watchmen skated to a convincing win Saturday night over the Timberwolves.  For the second game in a row, goaltender Tim Weis provided some pre-game drama, this time by showing up only 10 minutes prior to game-time, fortunately he was half-dressed and warmed-up from just having played an earlier game and was able to hit the ice on time. 

The Watchmen were facing Div 1 goaltender, Reinier Groeneveld filling in the Timberwolves’ net.  This didn’t intimidate the boys in purple, who jumped out to an early lead as defenseman Greg Cartwright danced in off the point leaving three Timberwolf skaters and their goalie (and at least one ref) looking for their jock, before dishing off to Russ Simpson who patiently finished the play.  The Timberwolves responded though, capitalizing on a failed clearing attempt and fired a solid slap shot from the point beating the Watchmen goalie on the glove side (it was a good shot and all, but this reporter believes that he normally catches a shot like that).  The Timberwolves took the lead two minutes later after the ref made a nice skate stop at the red line to set up a two-on-one.  While Marv Young Gun Blue tied the game shortly afterwards, the Watchmen were lucky to finish the first period tied at two being out shot over 2:1. 

The TSN turning point came half-way through the 2nd period when Watchmen tender Tim Weis turned aside a Sean Gagnon two-on-one attempt.  The Watchmen recovered the puck and Preston the Kid Kulmatycki got his second of three points on the night by sliding the puck between the peanut butter and the grape jelly off a scramble in front of the net.  The Watchmen exploded for another four goals before the period was out, kicked off by back-to-back tallies from Cliff McClain who was playing wing with Simpson and Gray.  With two minutes remaining Dana Gray’s shot from the point was tipped over Groeneveld’s shoulder, and Jody Farm-Team-Scoring-Machine Milne hammered a shot through the five-hole a split-second before the second buzzer.  Groeneveld, feeling frustrated, threw his own helmet off as the players skated to their benches.  The Timberwolves, who had already taken two dangerous penalties in the period seemed to think that Preston the Kid who happened to be standing near the net when the goal was scored, had knocked off their goaltender’s mask.  As a result, the last living brain-cell in #13’s head thought it was a good idea to “Bertuzzi” the Kid as he skated unsuspectingly away.  Incredibly, this only resulted in a double minor, and with the scored at 7-2 this stage was set for an ugly third period.

While the Watchmen did get sucked in to a few retaliatory penalties, the only real ugliness was their sloppy play in their own zone surrendering a couple of goals on unmarked rebounds.  Although Nycholat wasn’t back in time to take his man on the first goal, he did get back just in time to lay the trash-talk on him as he celebrated.  After being caught pinching while killing a penalty to set up the last Timberwolf goal the Watchmen buckled down to keep a safe 3-goal lead until the final buzzer.  Although the final shot tally of 43-40 may have been slightly inflated, the Watchmen were out shot throughout the game.  However, thanks to solid play all the way from top to bottom the Watchmen definitely out-chanced the Timberwolves and deserved the win.  The Watchmen still cling to first place in the division, notably without a single player in the league’s top-ten scorers: a testament to their depth and overall team effort all season (well except maybe for October).

*Russ Simpson got his point back that he lost last week by being awarded McClain’s first goal

Three Stars

1)      Cliff McClain

2)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

3)      Tim Weis

Game Result:  Timberwolves 4 vs. Watchmen 7 (Win, 8-2-3-1)

 

5-December-2004 – Watchmen find their stride

EDMONTON – In his mid-season report card, player/coach Wilkinson suggested he was waiting to see the Watchmen fire on all cylinders.  Apparently responding to this call, the boys in purple put together a solid overall team effort for the second game in a row moving the Watchmen into sole possession of 1st place.

The game started off 4 minutes late, as goaltender Tim Weis, trying to make up for missed hockey while in Africa tried to play two games at once, and ended up waltzing onto the ice with the clock ticking, and a 2-minute delay of game penalty handed out (despite reassurances from the league this would not happen).  Although the Eagles were not able to capitalize on this power play, they did jump out to a 1-0 when the Watchmen took a second penalty shortly after killing off the first.  A shortened first period, combined with a fair amount of penalty killing brought the first period to a close at 1-0, with the teams combining for only 10 shots on net. 

A minute into the 2nd period the Watchmen levelled the score as Marv Young Gun Blue knocked in a Nathan Deisman rebound.  Having been unable to beat the Watchmen goaltender on a breakaway late in the 1st period, the Eagles didn’t miss their next chance and retook the lead by stuffing in a mad scramble in front of the Watchmen net.  Guarding a one-goal lead, the Eagles were assisted by a few big saves, notably a glove-hand grab on Jody Milne, who had received a stellar pass from Watchmen defenseman Nycholat.  Despite being unable to score, the Watchmen slowly took control of the game until Preston the Kid Kulmatycki shattered the peanut butter jar from the slot with 4-minutes remaining in the period.  Wilkinson delivered the 2nd punch, as he hammered (and I mean hammered) home a rebound off the crossbar with 6 seconds to go.

The Watchmen began to take control, and didn’t give up a shot on their own net from midway through the second period until 6 minutes into the final frame.  The Eagles however, did not roll over and die as they managed to generate a 2-on-1 and then a clear breakaway, both of which were turned aside by goaltender Tim Weis preserving the one goal lead.  While the Watchmen controlled the play, they needed to add some insurance to finish off the Eagles.  The death blows came in a 1-2-3 combination as the Watchmen netted 3 goals in less than 2 minutes.  Jody Milne finished off a Marvin Blue rebound at 6:38 in the third, and Nathan Deisman shelved his own rebound while lying on his stomach less than a minute later.  The game was wrapped up as the Watchmen’s leading goal scorer, Cam Phillips finished off a lovely pass from Russ Simpson*.

It took a period or so, but when the Watchmen found their legs and their hands, they controlled the game and looked as good as they have all season.  With a number of players slotted to miss next week’s game against the Timberwolves, the Watchmen will need to keep up their team play to remain on top.

*Unfortunately for Russ, his assist on this highlight reel goal was awarded to Dana Gray

Three Stars

1)      Marv Young Gun Blue

2)      Dino Vlahadamis

3)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

Game Result:  Cameron Eagles 2 vs. Watchmen 6 (Win, 7-2-3-1)

 

29-November-2004 – Watchmen on top of log-jam

EDMONTON – Sweet, sweet revenge came in the form of a convincing win over the Landex Shockers 10-5 on Sunday, and the Watchmen have ended up tied for first place in a division with only 1 point separating first from fourth.  The Watchmen are currently tied with the Brewers with 16 points each, but the Watchmen have a game in hand.  Resting in 3rd place are the Stars and the Eagles, the Watchmen face off with the latter this coming Saturday.  Both teams in this tilt have also only played 12 games meaning that the winners will claim first place for themselves.

Goaltender Tim Weis will be returning to the line-up on the weekend having come back malaria-free from Nigeria.  Many thanks to Chris Grant who stood in, and often on his head while Weis was away.

After a slow start, the injury-prone Wilkinson has notched 13 points in his last 6 games rocketing him to the lead in team scoring.  Cory is the now sitting 10th in the league in overall points, the only member of his squad to be listed.  These impressive stats have been helped by Matt Rookie Sensation Baker, who after being ridden in the press has kept pace with Wilkinson in his last four games averaging 2 points per game.

Three Stars

1)      Tom Jacknisky

2)      Russ Misselbrook

3)      Cam Phillips

Game Result:  Watchmen 10 vs. Landex Shockers 5 (Win, 6-2-3-1)

 

21-November-2004 – Watchmen sleepwalk against Stars

EDMONTON – The Northern Stars showed up to the KC Twins arena bright eyed and bushy tailed ready to go to work last Saturday for a 7:30am tilt, while The Watchmen kept hitting the snooze button.

Right from the drop of the puck the Stars took the play to the still wet-dreaming Watchmen. Out shooting the sleepy heads in the first period, The Watchmen were lucky to find themselves still tied at 0-0 thanks in part to the great acrobatics of back-up Chris Grant.

Heading in to the 2nd period the Watchmen were talking a good game, but failed to answer to the much more aggressive Stars attack. To make matters worse, leading point producer Wilkinson was taken out early in the second period with a knee on knee hit and could not return to action. This seemed to energize the wrong team as the Stars lit the lamp twice to end the second.

Down two defensive no-shows from the start of the game and with Wilkinson on the shelf, the Watchmen were not up to the consistent barrage of Stars forwards and could not seem to gather up the energy to mount any kind of counter attack. The visiting team managed to convert mid way through the third, miraculously keeping them in the game. Again, however, this sparked the wrong side as the Stars jammed in a loose puck seconds after. You could hear the life sucked out of the arena at that point and the Watchmen were looking forward to curling up in their blankets once the game ended.

Final score 4-2

Wilkinson is listed as day to day.

Once again no-shows and no heads up warning were given and the Watchmen were short handed on the back end. This was particularly distressing as a sub player was turned away the night before for fear of having too many players in the line-up...

With files from Lighthouse Press Agency.

Three Stars

1)      Chris Grant

2)      Ed Patenaude (Northern Stars)

3)      Kelly Symborski (Northern Stars)

Game Result:  Northern Stars 4 vs. Watchmen 2 (Loss, 5-2-3-1)

 

17-November-2004 – Watchmen crawl into tie for first

EDMONTON – Having already played one of the best games in the history of rec hockey this season the Watchmen have now also played in one of the worst games in the history of organized sport.

With 1st place on the line, the Brewers were only able to dress 8 skaters and a rent-a-goalie.  Despite missing Preston the Kid Kulmatycki and Marvin Blue to injuries, as well as Cliff McClain and Russ Simpson who are travelling, the Watchmen countered with almost 3 full lines and 4 defence, thanks in part to the return of defenceman Greg Cartwright to the line-up.  Bolstered by calling up Jody Farm-Team-Scoring-Machine Milne, the Watchmen outmanned and outgunned the Brewers, yet put forth an effort that clearly demonstrated they felt the game was already won.

Things certainly appeared well in hand as Cam Phillips opened the scoring going top shelf on a shorthanded breakaway, and Cory Right-Wing Nut-Job Wilkinson finished off a Chris Liberal Weiner Girard fanned shot-turned-pass to put the Watchmen up 2-0 early on.  While Dino Vlahadamis was able to make a lovely glove hand save while covering the point for a pinching Honey-Garlic Nycholat, goaltender Tim Weis was not able to perform the same feat letting in a weak wrist shot to allow the Brewers into the game.  Shortly afterwards, Wilkinson found himself in the unfamiliar position of being the last man back digging the puck out of this own zone.  While kudos was certainly in order for Wilkinson, it was certainly a sign that something was amiss with the Watchmen.

The Brewers were officially let back in the game as they capitalized on their 2nd breakaway in as many minutes early in the second period.  Although the Watchmen were dominating possession and shots on net, few quality scoring chances were being created, and those that were, were being fired wide of the net or into the chest of the tender.  With the Brewers conserving their energy, and the Watchmen playing down to their level, the play ground to a virtual snail’s pace.  It is not uncommon for games like this to go to the underdog if the dominating team cannot find their scoring hands; as in their frustration the dominating team typically starts taking chances and often gives up a costly breakaway on their sleeping goalie, to lose the game by a goal.  While the Watchmen did give up 3 more odd-man rushes, the Brewers were not able to capitalize on any of them, buying enough time for Jody Farm-Team-Scoring-Machine Milne to net back-to-back goals, capped by a pretty Wilkinson tally to put the Watchmen firmly on top 5-2 by the end of the second period. 

Although the Brewers did manage to score once in the third, Barker, Mills and Girard each scored to put the game away.  With the outcome decided long before the final buzzer, both teams waltzed through the motions making the 3rd period painful to watch.  Sensing the lack of excitement for the fans, Nycholat decided to rough things up in the dying minutes.  Unfortunately even the pushing and shoving was lack-lustre, with the notable exception of a bitch-slap administered by Dino Vlahadamis to keep an excited Brewer out of the fray.

Despite an uninspiring game to watch, the 2 points move the Watchmen into a tie for first place with the Brewers.  Thanks in part go to Wilkinson’s 2 goals and an assist, Mills’ two-way play that notched him 2 points and Milne’s ability to maintain his average production of 3 points per game in every game he has been called upon.  Honourable mentions go to Cam Phillips for snowing the goalie to get his Gordie Howe hat-trick, to Matt Rookie Sensation Barker whose goal and two assists demonstrated that his gym time is paying dividends and to Chris Girard, whose 3 point night was capped off by a goal that was greeted with a gracious “It’s about f#$*ing time!” from an anonymous player on Watchmen bench.

The Watchmen’s next game is against the streaking Northern Stars this Saturday at 7:30 AM.  The Watchmen are still without a confirmed goaltender to replace Weis who will miss the next two games.

Three Stars

1)      Jody Farm-Team-Scoring-Machine Milne

2)      Shawn Mills

3)      Cory Right-Wing Nut-Job Wilkinson

Game Result:  Brewers 3 vs. Watchmen 8 (Win, 5-1-3-1)

 

8-November-2004 – Purple and white move into 2nd place with a big win

EDMONTON – The Watchmen fell behind 2-0 early Sunday morning but managed to battle back to beat the Timberwolves giving them their first win in just over a month. 

For a 7:15 AM game, the Watchmen were able to muster an impressive 3 lines and four defensemen.  Only Chris Liberal Weiner Girard was AWOL, likely still mourning Dubya’s stunning re-election.  Despite the full line-up, the Watchmen got off to a slow start.  A failed clearing attempt led to the Timberwolves’ first goal as Weis was beat cleanly on the glove side from the slot.  Five minutes later a floater somehow squeaked right through the Watchmen tender and a collective grown could be heard from the bench as the Watchmen found themselves down 2-0.  Before the buzzer sounded the Preston the Kid Kulmatycki knocked in a Tom Jacknisky rebound to salvage what was otherwise a lack-lustre period for the Watchmen.

Having let in a soft goal, Weis was able keep the differential at a single goal by kicking out several scrambles to start the second period and managed to find his glove hand that had been absent in the first period.  After an inspirational talk from player-coach Corporal Cory Wilkinson, defenseman Corwin Nycholat resuscitated his squad with back-to-back goals, giving him an impressive four markers in his last two games*. 

Resting on their laurels, the Watchmen decided to give up a few breakaways to keep the period interesting, the first of which tied the game and the second breakaway almost went in but the rebound was pulled from the goal-mouth by Nycholat after an initial save.  Despite being out shot 32-21, the Watchmen began the third period tied at 3.

The final period was all purple and white as the Watchmen fired 20 shots on net in the first 8 minutes, notching two goals including a wrist shot by Tom Jacknisky and point shot by Dino Vlahadamis who illustrated the importance of hitting the net in order to score from the blue line.  Sensing the game was slipping away, the Timberwolves got caught taking a few chances and rounding out what would be a five-goal third period for the Watchmen were Deisman, Wilkinson and Blue who all tallied in the final few minutes.

Feeling pretty good about himself, Watchmen goaltender Tim Weis got a little cocky and foolishly played the puck behind the net with 10 second left in the game.  Not only did he get stripped of the puck, but he managed to re-aggravate a nagging groin injury failing to prevent a wrap-around goal.  What an idiot.

The game ended 8-4 in favour of the Watchmen.  Meanwhile, the Landex Shockers downed the Cameron Eagles allowing the Watchmen to move past the Eagles and into second place.  The Watchmen face the Brewers on Tuesday the 16th in a game that could pull the Watchmen into a tie for first.

*Unfortunately for H-G Nycholat, the scorekeeper gave his second goal to Dana Gray.  While those of us who were there witnessed it in all its glory, it is officially lost to Nycholat, who was not even given an assist on the play.

Three Stars

1)      Corwin Honey Garlic Nycholat

2)      Tom Jacknisky

3)      Marvin Blue

Game Result:  Timberwolves 4 vs. Watchmen 8 (Win, 4-1-3-1)

 

5-November-2004 – Watchmen looking for first win in a month

EDMONTON – The Watchmen are gearing up for an early morning game Sunday morning against the Timberwolves.  The Watchmen haven’t won a game since these two teams last met going 0-1-2-1 in the process.

Although the Timberwolves are struggling in the standings this year they have lost 3 games by only 1 goal and defaulted on another, and so they are not a team to be taken lightly.

The Watchmen remain 2 points behind the league leading Brewers and three points up on the Shockers and the Stars.  What makes things potentially more interesting is that a Division shuffle could conceivable move the Force, who are 6-1-1 in Division 3, into Division 2.  The Force would bring their 13 points with them and would land the Watchmen in 4th place.  Ironically, a win this week might facilitate this move and push the Timberwolves into Division 3 and the Watchmen into fourth.  However, at roughly the 1/3 point of the season there is lots of time to make up ground and the 2 points will certainly help regardless of how it may impact the divisions.

 

31-October-2004 – Nycholat and Weis provide offence and enforcement in 3-3 draw

EDMONTON – The Watchmen are maximizing their ice time this year by heading to overtime for the third straight time, and the fourth time this season.  The Watchmen faced off against the Cameron Eagles who were tied for first place with the Brewers and who lead the Watchmen by a single point in the standings.

The Watchmen jumped out to an early lead on a bullet from Chris Liberal Weiner Girard in the top corner beating the Eagles’ goalie on the glove side.  The Eagles responded on a power play by knocking in a loose puck in a scramble, tying the game at one midway through the first period.  Moments later, the Watchmen regained the lead when the Eagles dumped the puck into the offensive zone and it was played by goaltender Tim Weis.  Weis fanned on his pass, but managed just to get enough wood on it for Corwin Honey Garlic Nycholat to pick it up, skate the length of the ice and fire a hard shot past Eagles goalie Jon Hurst.  Weis thus got his first assist in four years on one of the weakest passes in the history of the ERHL.

The Eagles responded in the 2nd period with two quick goals to take a 3-2 lead despite being out shot almost 2:1.  The TSN turning point came midway through the 2nd period when Weis kicked out an Eagles breakaway preventing them from taking a two-goal lead.  This play seemed to re-energize the Watchmen, as well as Weis, who after letting in 3 goals on 12 shots turned away the next 20. 

After hitting the post twice in one shift in the second period, Nycholat tied the game in third period on another precision wrist shot as he snuck in off the blue line.  Unable to get a conventional hat-trick Nycholat tried to score on his own net by deflecting a slap shot from the point on a play that would have made Don Cherry’s brain turn in its grave.  When he wasn’t scoring, Nycholat spent much of the evening in the penalty box, and managed to get thrown out of the game after earning his fourth trip to the sin bin.  With Nycholat’s enforcement gone, Weis was forced to protect himself, getting into the fray after being sticked in the head 3 times while covering a loose puck. 

The defensive play of the game came from Watchmen defenseman Nathan Deisman, who was called up from the farm team only hours before the game, hustling back to break up a 2 on 1 with a two-legged slide in the dying moments preserving the tie. 

The Eagles turned on the pressure near the end, but could not beat the Watchmen goaltender and regulation time ended in a 3-3 draw.  Overtime did not change the result and the game ended also tied 32-32 in shots on net.  Wilkinson and McClain notched 2 assists each on the night.

The Watchmen were missing defensemen Cartwright and Mills, as well as Barker on forward.  After a self-proclaimed slow start, Barker apparently has been hitting the gym and even took the weekend off to clear his head in Victoria in an attempt to avoid getting his nickname changed from Rookie Sensation to Sophomore Disappointment.

Three Stars

1)      Corwin Honey Garlic Nycholat

2)      Tim Weis

3)      Cory Wilkinson

Game Result:  Cameron Eagles 3 vs. Watchmen 3 (Tie, 3-1-3-1)

 

25-October-2004 – Nycholat AWOL as Watchmen miss opportunity to reclaim 1st

EDMONTON – Rumours are swirling today as Corwin Nycholat has missed his second game in a row.  Sources are suggesting he may have headed back to France, as he could not take the work regime of Wilkinson and the Watchmen “defence first” system.  Other rumours circulating are that he has headed south of the 49th parallel to help Mr. Kerry flip on his latest flop.  Nycholat is a chemistry researcher, and is it speculated that he may be dabbling in WMD's… so he may never be found.

Notwithstanding Nycholat’s noticeable (and unforeseen) absence, the Watchmen’s seven goals, including three by Cam Phillips, against the Landex Shockers should have been enough to put them away.  Alas, it was not the case, as the Shockers potted their eighth goal in overtime, in what was a wild back and forth affair last night at the Westmount center.

Goaltending was not the issue for the Watchmen, as back-up Glen Shoemaker did everything he could to win the game.  The Watchmen's lack of will to put the game away was the difference.  Holding the lead the entire game, the Watchmen folded like a virgin on prom night in the dying minutes of the game to let the Shockers tie the game and then win it in OT.

With files from Lighthouse Press Agency

Three Stars

1)      Travis Lidstone (Shockers)

2)      Cam Phillips

3)      Cory Wilkinson

Game Result:  Landex Shockers 8 vs. Watchmen 7 (overtime loss, 3-1-2-1)

 

18-October-2004 – Watchmen, Stars skate to a draw

EDMONTON – No WatchNET reporters were available to report on the Watchmen’s tangle with the Northern Stars, nor were 4 of the 6 regular defensemen.  Hopefully media and defensive turnout improve.

Three Stars

1)      n/a

Game Result:  Northern Stars 3 vs. Watchmen 3 (tie, 3-1-2-0)

 

9-October-2004 – Weis sent to minors after rough outing

EDMONTON – The Watchmen outshot the Brewers 55-26, but lost 7-4 Saturday night, surrendering the game and first place to the Brewers.

In front of a capacity crowd in K of C arena, the Brewers used the lack of a redline to their advantage and managed to get 8 odd man rushes throughout the course of the game.  The teams traded goals early on, but the Brewers were able to knock a 3rd rebound past Weis, who was then unable to stop the next 4 breakaways and two-on-one’s he faced and halfway through the 2nd period the Watchmen found themselves trailing 6-1.

The boys in purple did show a lot of heart in the third, and managed to battle back to make it a 6-4 game.  But it was too little too late, and although the Brewers didn’t score on any of their three odd man rushes in the 3rd, they did pop in a goal on a clean shot from the slot to ice the game at 7-4 with only moments remaining.

It was a frustrating game to loose as the Watchmen dominated play, but until the 3rd period didn’t get many quality scoring chances despite raking up the shots.  The Brewers on the other hand got half as many shots as they gave up, but managed to generate a lot of more scoring chances and were able to capitalize on majority of them.  Watchmen goaltender Tim Weis is heading to Montreal to get treatment for the sunburn on the back of his neck and Glen Shoemaker will be called up for the Watchmen’s next two games.

Three Stars

1)      Blair Angus (Brewers)

2)      Jason Holloway (Brewers)

3)      Tim Stucke (Brewers)

Game Result:  Brewers 7 vs. Watchmen 4 (Loss, 3-1-1-0)

 

5-October-2004 – Watchmen remain undefeated

EDMONTON – Despite an 11 PM start, both the Watchmen and the Timberwolves managed to field 3 full lines and 5 defensemen.  Buoyed by the return of defenseman Dino Vlahadamis, the Watchmen who took control of the game early on and never looked back.  Jody Milne opened the scoring at the 10-minute mark, shortly after the Watchmen failed to capitalize on their first power play of the game.  The Watchmen then successfully killed off what would be the first of Dana Gray’s two infractions on the evening, and notched their second goal on a blast from the point by Greg Cartwright.  Preston the Kid Kulmatycki hammered a slapshot home in the dying seconds of the first to finish the period with a 3-0 lead.

The Timberwolves answered back early in the 2nd period on a breakaway that Watchmen goalie Weis raced out of his net to play but was one step behind Timberwolf forward Dan Woo who managed to flip it of the sprawling goalie.  Dino Vlahadamis responded with a shot from the point and the Watchmen’s 3 goal lead was restored.  The Watchmen went on to net four more unanswered goals on tallies from Milne, Kulmatycki, Starrett and Misselbrook.  The Timberwolves’ Dan Woo notched his second of the game with only 19 seconds remaining in the second period on a powerplay to make it an 8-2 tally.

Tom Jacknisky scored early in the 3rd period to bring the Watchmen total to 9 goals, a season high.  The Timberwolves brought an end to the scoring on another powerplay as Jody Milne was sent off the ice for a scrum that ensued following a stick he apparently received in the face. 

The shots ended up 30-25 in favour of the Watchmen, who seemed to have the golden touch today scoring from every way possible.  The Watchmen face the 2nd place Brewers on Saturday the 9th again without player/coach Corporal Cory Wilkinson who is still campaigning for George W. Bush in California.

Three Stars

1)      Dino Vlahadamis

2)      Russ Misselbrook

3)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

Game Result:  Timberwolves 3 vs. Watchmen 9 (Win, 3-0-1-0)

 

4-October-2004 – Watchmen unveil new jersey

OLD STRATHCONA – With a 10 day lull in action the Watchmen have unveiled their 3rd jersey design to give the fans something to look forward to.  The jersey is a throwback to the Minnesota North Stars jersey, the franchise from the Watchmen’s home and away sweaters can trace their roots.  The ERHL Stars, from where the Watchmen franchise originated had based their jerseys on the Dallas Stars design but using purple, white and black colours.  After a brief experiment with teal (and all number 17), the Watchmen retained the ERHL Stars colour scheme as the jerseys evolved into their current design.  The colour was also selected so that for once Nycholat would look like part of the team.

The 3rd jerseys will be on sale and worn at charity events when the Watchmen are able to keep their regular jerseys from wandering off (so likely never).

The Watchmen are back in action tomorrow night against the Timberwolves as the two least penalized teams face off.  The Watchmen will try to hang onto their first place position and maintain their league leading stats in goals for and against.

 

28-September-2004 – WatchNET journalists under fire

OLD STRATHCONA – After receiving several complaints about the factual integrity of the Watchmen vs. Eagles write-up, the WatchNET editorial board was forced to re-write the article to accurately reflect events of September 25th.  The WatchNET released the following statement to the public asking for their patience and continued support:

The WatchNET strives for accuracy in reporting and quality hockey insight into the Watchmen hockey franchise’s performance on and off the ice.  The pressure to publish in a timely manner inevitably lead to errors and omissions.  The WatchNET appreciates your feedback and will double our efforts to pursue the highest standards of integrity and spelling in reporting to you about your favourite ERHL franchise.

p.s. you should really be working and not reading this website you know.

 

26-September-2004 – Watchmen punish Cameron Eagles

EDMONTON – Missing the offensive combination of Barker/Girard, and with three regular defensemen AWOL the Watchmen still managed to lay a beating on the Cameron Eagles.  The Eagles got the jump on the Watchmen getting the first 4 shots of the game in the first few minutes, but the Watchmen quickly responded finishing the first period with leading the shots 17-6 and the goals 2-0.  Jody Milne opened the scoring on a breakaway 5 minutes into the first period, and Marv Blue converted on a beautiful tic-tac-toe from Russ Simpson and Cam Phillips in what will surely be remembered as one of the best Watchmen goals since the Girard toe-drag of February ’02. 

Resting on their laurels, the Watchmen did their best to let the Eagles back into the game by not converting on several power plays, taking some poor penalties, and generally slowing the pace of the game down.  Preston The Kid potted a goal in what would eventually become a 4-point night for him, to try to re-energize the sluggish squad.  But it was the Eagles’ breakaway goal that seemed to wake up the Purple squad.  Corporal Wilkinson, whose hands were on a leave of absence all night, netted two almost identical goals set up by Preston the Kid, to send the Watchmen into the final frame with a 5-1 lead. 

The Watchmen took a 7-1 lead after tallying 50 shots as Marv Blue and Preston the Kid both netted their 2nd goals of the night*.  Meanwhile Jody Milne, called up from the WatchFarm for his 2nd game quietly notched 3 assists giving him a team leading 7 points on the season.  The Eagles managed to score twice in the last 5 minutes of the game, the first on a nice shot from the slot and the second on a not-so-nice shot from the point that was misplayed by the Watchmen netminder Weis.  Weis blamed the goal on his new pads that he is breaking in, while Wilkinson was worried that perhaps Weis had re-aggravated his groin was quoted after the game as saying: “When I saw him go down I thought ‘oh-no’ he’s hurt again.  I was relieved to know it was just a terrible, terrible goal”. 

The worst part about this goal was that it ended the Watchmen’s 5 goal lead, such that the last five minutes of the game would not be run time, leaving time for things to get ugly in dying minutes of the game… and ugly they got.  The Eagles – who were by no means a model of oral restraint up until this point – got pretty excited as Cam Phillips swatted at a loose puck in front of the Eagles tender.  A melee ensued and 2 players from each side were ejected.  Dino Vlahadamis, who was watching the game from the stands looked visibly heart-broken, not being able to take part in the fray.  He almost got his chance as one of the ejected Eagles wandered down to the Watchmen dressing room to prove just how immature he was, resulting in a game ejection.  The Watchmen, who had only 8 minutes in penalties going into the game, managed to triple their total for the season, while the Eagles who tallied 34 minutes only matched their season total.  Hopefully both teams can put it behind them and play some clean hockey the next time they meet.  The upshot is that Corporal Cory Wilkinson ended up with Gordie Howe hat trick as he selflessly jumped into to the fray to defend his teammate (a pretty brave thing for a guy his size).

The Watchmen are pleased to announce that veteran defenceman Dino Vlahadamis has been taken off the IR, and will be dressing for the Watchmen’s next game against the Timberwolves on October 5th. 

* Kulmatycki’s 2nd goal was credited to Simpson, and since I’m too lazy to correct the stats, it’ll stay that way.

Three Stars

1)      Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

2)      Jody Milne

3)      Cam Phillips

Game Result:  Cameron Eagles 3 vs. Watchmen 7 (Win, 2-0-1-0)

 

22-September-2004 –Great game ends in a tie

EDMONTON – In what may eventually go down in the history books among one of the all time great rec. hockey games the Watchmen and the Landex Shockers skated to a 5-5 draw Tuesday night.  The Watchmen, fresh of their win on Saturday night came out strong, and forward Cam Phillips scored on the first shot of the game through the five-hole.  The Shockers responded shortly after on a screen shot from the point to tie the game setting the precedent for what would be back and forth scoring all night long.  Matt Barker put in Girard a rebound to give the Watchmen a 2-1 lead going into the 2nd period, breaking the drought for the Corporal Cory Wilkinson – Chris Girard – Matt Rookie Sensation Barker line.

The Shockers took the lead midway through the 2nd period after capitalizing twice on failed clearing attempts by the Watchmen.  The Watchmen kept their composure and tied the game on a Girard goal on a beautiful pass from R-S Barker bringing the period to a close at a 3-3 tie.

The Shockers kept coming and scored on a third rebound to give them a 4-3 lead.  Russ Simpson responded with a nice little move in front of the Shockers net to tie it at four, on a play that was set up by Dana Gray who currently leads the Watchmen in scoring with 4 assists in two games.  The Shockers took the lead again on a breakaway the trickled in past Weis who got 49% of the shot.  With less than 5 minutes to go Marvin Blue finished off a strong rush from Tom Jacknisky who just returned from a stint in France, tying the game at 5, which is where it remained even after a 5-minute overtime.

It was an exciting, fast, close and clean game.  If this is typical of the level of competition in Div 2 this year, the fans have a lot to look forward to.

Three Stars

1)      Dana Gray

2)      Matt Rookie Sensation Barker

3)      Russ Simpson

Game Result:  Landex Shockers 5 vs. Watchmen 5 (Tie, 1-0-1-0)

 

20-September-2004 –Watchmen win home opener

EDMONTON – The Watchmen, bolstered by farm team call-ups, downed the Northern Stars 6-2 in their first game of the season on Saturday night.  Jody Milne and Mike Starrett, both playing in their first game as Watchmen got 2 goals and an assist each to lead the Watchmen.  Russ Simpson and Corwin Nycholat also netted a goal each to round out the scoring.  The Watchmen dominated the play outshooting the Northern Stars 2 to 1.

The much touted Girard-Wilkinson-Barker line was shut out completely.  Wilkinson responded to the criticism with: “And what do you mean?  Girard [and I] checked like madmen.  Barker was out there chirping and causing s*#t. What else do you want from the checking/goon line?”

The Watchmen hit the ice again this Tuesday against the Landex Shockers.

Three Stars

1)      Jody Milne

2)      Mike Starrett

3)      Marvin Blue

Game Result:  Northern Stars 2 vs. Watchmen 6 (Win, 1-0-0-0)

 

13-September-2004 –ERHL 2004-05 season opens tonight

EDMONTON – The 2004-05 season gets underway this evening at arenas in North Edmonton.  The Division 2 opener pits the Brewers against the Cameron Eagles at 10:45 pm on September 17th.  With the NHL on strike ERHL attendance could double or even triple to 2 for 3 spectators per game.

The Watchmen’s regular season opens Saturday night at KC Arena against the Northern Stars.  Among the new rules this year is the removal of the red line for two-line passes.  This rule opens up the game quite a bit and should lead to more scoring opportunities, while alleviating the need for Wilkinson ever to have to skate beyond the red line.

In other ERHL news, there are now 6 teams signed up for Div1 and 10 in Div3, meaning that much maligned crossover games can hopefully be avoided this year.

 

12-September-2004 –Watchmen look strong in pre-season

EDMONTON – The Watchmen rounded out their preseason with a 5-1 win over Div3 Chiefs.  With about half of the regular squad, and a number of players from the Watchmen “Farm Team” (spare list) dressing for the game, the Watchmen dominated play in their final preseason game Saturday night.  The Watchmen jumped out to a 3 goal led before surrendering a break-away midway through the 2nd which resulted in the Chiefs only goal.  Defenseman Nathan Deisman responded with a goal from the point and in the dying seconds of the game Preston the Kid, fired a slap shot into the top corner of the net to round out the scoring.

A particularly impressive performance was put in by veteran Dana Gray, who looked in mid-season form, although much of the rest of the team’s shooting looked in mid-Atom season form, with the Chiefs goalie’s chest being the target of choice for the evening.  While connecting for a several goals, the line of Barker-Wilkinson-Kulmatycki laid down more drop passes than a Blue Bombers wide receiver. 

The preseason action has given the squad a chance to shake off some summer rust, and shed a few summer pounds prior to this Saturday’s home opener.

Regular season starts on Saturday

The Watchmen open their season this Saturday at KC Arena at 5pm against the Northern Stars.

Purple Heart Awarded

A special thanks goes out to Glen Shoemaker, who tracked down his gear and drove all the way out to KC only find out that due to poor Watchmen management communication, that his services were not required.  Fans and players hope that this experience will not tarnish his image of the Watchmen franchise and he will continue to be a reliable spare for the squad.

 

9-September-2004 –Regular season schedule announced as Nycholat returns to lineup

EDMONTON – The ERHL has announced the new fall schedules, along with several rule changes such as the elimination of the red line for two-line passes and the requirement for playoff eligibility to be 10 regular season games.  The Watchmen will be playing in Div2 again this year, which along with Div1 are now labelled as the “competitive” divisions in the ERHL.  As in previous years teams can be moved up and down divisions depending on how they have done after the first 5 regular season games.  There are currently 6 teams in Division 2, and with only 4 teams in Division 1 some dreaded crossover games may loom on the schedule, although that remains to be seen.

In other news, defenseman Corwin Nycholat has resigned a one-year contract with the Watchmen.  Details of the agreement are being kept quiet, although taking on the role of water-boy is rumoured to be part of the deal.  Whether this was a concession made to settle the “honey-garlic issue” remains to be seen.  Nycholat denies the rumours that it is even an issue in a statement made last week: “I can tell you that this 'bull-****' is coming strictly from my agent. You guys know I am team player Tex-Mex all the way (Right Cory?)”.   Whether Nycholat has truly reformed, or remains a closet honey-garlic eater may never be resolved, either way he is a Watchman again this season and fans look forward to seeing his green pants flying down the ice as he cuts through the opposing team’s defenses.

Final preseason game Saturday September 11th @ 8:15pm KC Arena.  The Watchmen are dressing the following players:

G – Glen Shoemaker

F – Chris Girard

Cory Lighthouse Wilkinson

Matt Rookie Sensation Barker

Russ Simpson

Russ Misselbrook

Dana Gray

Preston the Kid Kulmatycki

Cam Phillips

D – Corwin Honey Garlic Nycholat

Shaun Mills

Nathan Deisman

Greg Cartwright

 

The Watchmen are also dressing goaltender Tim Weis to play for the Chiefs.

Division 2 Teams

Brewers
Cameron Eagles
Landex Shockers
Northern Stars
Timberwolves
Watchmen

 

1-September-2004 – Watchmen and Friends rosters announced

EDMONTON – The Watchmen looked like they didn’t have as much summer fat to burn off than it was speculated, as they mercilessly shelled the “Watchmen Friends” 12-5, in the Watchmen and Friends Shinny Classic on Tuesday night.  There was a good turn out, although even in preseason a few Watchmen still managed to not show up without notifying management, which is unfortunate as several players were turned away.  Nonetheless a good time was had by all and enough players showed up to cover the ice time, the referee and even a few dollars for the “Wandering Jersey Fund” a new charitable foundation set up by WatchCORP.

Watchmen

G – Tim Weis

F – Russ Simpson

Preston Kulmatycki

Cory Wilkinson

Chris Girard

Marv Blue

Dino Vlahadamis

Cliff McClain

Cam Phillips

D – Corwin Nycholat

Greg Cartwright

Nathan Deisman

Russ Misselbrook

Friends (please bring a white jersey)

G – Chris Grant

F – Ebbing de Jong

James Gunton

Aaron Miller

Glen Shoemaker

Misselbrook buddy #1

Misselbrook buddy #2

Misselbrook buddy #3

Marc Couturier

D – Travis Manchur

John Bacik

Misselbrook buddy #4

Misselbrook buddy #5

 

26-August-2004 – Preseason opens with Nycholat in contract dispute

EDMONTON – The Watchmen management has announced that training camp opens on September 7th from 9:00-10:30pm at Argyll Arena in Edmonton.  “This is a mandatory skate, we’ve got some summer fat to lose, and we want to hit the ground running this year, we all know how points in September often make the difference in April” assistant captain Cory Wilkinson said.

Coming off a first place finish in the 2003/04 regular season and a trip to the playoffs finals, the Watchmen look poised to go all the way this year with most of the squad returning, and a few strong additions.  There have however been some rumours of cracks in the armour.  Leaked documents indicate that defenseman Corwin Nycholat is in a contract dispute with Watchmen management.  Earlier this month Nycholat was quoted as saying “I hope that you and my agent can come to an agreement soon as I am being pursued by a team in France.  If I go I might take Marv [Blue] with me as he knows the drill.”

Tensions increased this week when management pointed out in the press release for the pre-season Watchmen and Friends Shinny Classic* that: “Yes Corwin...you can come out too” fuelling speculation that Nycholat is not explicitly a Watchmen or a friend.

* Tuesday September 7th @ 9pm Argyll Arena.

 

 

 

 

 

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