Dryden sinks English River in season opener

COCHENOUR, Ont. – The defending Superior International Junior Hockey League champion Dryden Ice Dogs made an early statement that they want to repeat as Bill Salonen Cup title holders as they rolled over English River Miners 9-1 Friday on opening night at Cochenour Arena.

Dryden was all business in this one storming out to 4-0 lead after one period.

It took the GM Ice Dogs just 37 seconds to get on the board thanks to Evan Walls’ first SIJHL goal.

The visitors came right back and added another before the contest was a minute old on Wyatt Lawrence’s initial league tally.

Dryden kept coming and tacked on two more from Jacen Bracko and Cam Lockard, with his first, to go up by four by the 10:37 mark of the session and spell an early end to Miners’ starter Michael Lenko’s night in favour of Josh Breznik.

Action in the middle stanza saw each team score once with the session also being delayed by a thunderstorm that knocked out the power at the arena for a while.

English River did get Kyle Roslowski’s first SIJHL marker at 3:49 of the second, but Lawrence struck shorthanded less than two minutes later to make it 5-1 after two periods of play.

The GM Ice Dogs then blew it open in the third for adding four more to finish off the romp.

Bracko and Walls added one more each for the visitors with Brandon Lawson, with his side down a man, and Josh Sylvain, on the power play, accounted for the final two markers as that duo both scored for the first time in league play.

Walls, Bracko and Lawrence all had three points on the night in the one-sided triumph.

Justin Anderson made 22 stops to post the win in his SIJHL debut.

Lenko suffered the loss allowing four against on 11 attempts while Breznik handled 29 of 34 in lengthy relief.

The two sides will meet again Sunday afternoon in Dryden in 3:30 p.m. start at Memorial Arena.

Photo credit: Patrick Boucha