Defenceman’s Josh Van Dyk’s three goals highlighted a valiant effort by the Hamilton Junior Red Wings who dropped a 7-5 decision to Oakville Blades on Monday night.
Van Dyk also picked up an assist to record a four-point night in the Ontario Provincial Junior A Hockey League game at the Dave Andreychuk Mountain Arena. Last year in 48 regular season games with the Red Wings, the 6-1, 180-pound blueline patroller had nine goals and 20 assists. In 18 games this campaign, the 20-year-old Van Dyk already has eight goals and 12 helpers for 20 points.
But the offensive outburst by the Woodstock native on Monday night would be lost on the Red Wings who twice found themselves staring at four-goal deficits that would prove too much to overcome, not that they didn’t threaten to pull even. The Blades had period leads of 3-1 after the first and 6-4 after two. But after scoring the game’s first goal, only to have Hamilton tie it 33 seconds later with Van Dyk’s first of the night, the Blades would respond with four answered tallies that had them ahead 5-1 before the second period was seven minutes old.
Frankie Grandits’ 16th goal of the season on the powerplay narrowed the gap slightly but Oakville will go up 6-2 on their own extra man advantage three minutes later.
Hamilton would then get two power play goals from Van Dyk and Spencer Abbott would post his 13th of the season to make it a 6-5 game with just under 15 minutes to play.
Chase Langeraap, a Cayuga native who played last season for Milton, would score a shorthanded goal, his second marker for the evening, to give the Blades an insurance counter.
Also scoring for the Blades were Bryan Peters, Domenic Monardo (with two), Daniel Borges, and Paul Conter. Wes Consorti had two assists for Hamilton.
Wings netminder Eric Crawford stopped 15 of the 22 shots he faced while Matt Hoyle blocked 28 of 33 Hamilton shots.
The win left Oakville in second place with a 15-4-1-1 record for 32 points while Hamilton remained fourth with a 12-4-2-2 mark and 28 points in the West Division. Brampton tops the loop with 37 points.
The Wings play again on Friday in Streetsville against the Derbys while Oakville is home to Mississauga on the same night.