MIDDLETON - Central Kings’ Zack Forsythe notched four goals and an assist as the Central Kings Gators trounced the Middleton Monarchs 15-0 in Valley High School Hockey League boys play Oct. 28.
It was the third straight loss for the young Middleton squad as they experienced some growing pains in nets and on defense, but showed some good offensive work by times, especially in the last two-thirds of the game.
But Gators’ net minders Cameron Could and Alex VanRoessell managed to clear everything the Monarchs could send their way.
Central Kings knocked in two quick goals in the first two minutes of the game and were up 9-0 after the first period. They added two more in the second and four in the third frame to pad their goals-for column.
Jake Whisten and Jacob Ouellette both scored single markers and had four assists each, while Sam Martin and Mitchell Baxter had a pair of Gators’ goals apiece. Adding singles were Spencer Kennie, Owen Kinsmen, Will Crocker, Hunter Graham, and Austin Visser.
Middleton picked up 16 penalty minutes and Central Kings scored four power play goals. The Gators had only two penalty minutes.
“The goaltending is inexperienced and half of the defense is Grade 9s and they’re only going to get bigger and better as the season progresses,” said Monarchs’ manager Albert Johnson. “I’ve seen most of their practices and I know they’re working hard on their drills, and I think it’s just a matter of experience – lack of experience and gaining experience.”
Offensively, Johnson noted that Grade 11 forward Ned Brooks showed flashes of his old form from when he played as a Grade 9 student for the Monarchs two years ago when they last had a team. And he noted that after the first 25 minutes of the game instead of giving up Middleton players pulled up their socks and played decent hockey.
“They tightened their whole game up defensively in the second and third periods,” he said. “The last two-thirds of the game was more what they’re capable of. They may never beat Centrol Kings but they shouldn’t lose to them 15-0. But when you fall behind 2-0 within the first two minutes it can be somewhat demoralizing to every player on the team whether they want to admit it or not.”
Johnson said the Monarchs and their fans should not be discouraged this early in the season as coach Jim Johnson experiments with line combinations, pinpoints weaknesses, and changes things up on the fly as he tweaks the lineup.
And he noted that Central Kings Gators are a Division 2 team and Horton, who downed the Monarchs 14-0 in their season opener, is a Division 1 team. The Monarchs are a Division 3 team. The Digby Mariners, who won 8-5 over Middleton is also a Division 3 team.
The loss to Cental Kings put the Monarchs at 0-3 in the early going. They head to Kingston Nov. 3 in a 7:30 p.m. contest against the 2-0 West Kings Wolverines.
Albert Johnson said the Wolverines are about on par with the Gators.
“If the kids come out and play well defensively they’ll hold them at bay,” he said. “If they come out and play lackadaisically like they did against CK at the start of it, they’ll be behind the eight ball right from the get-go.”
After the match-up with West Kings, MRHS doesn’t play again until Nov. 11 when they take on the 0-4 Clare Loups at 7:30 p.m. in Middleton.