Evan Foley’s third period goal was the difference Sunday night, propelling his Napanee Raiders to a 2-1 win over the Jets in Amherstview.
It also powered the Raiders to a nearly flawless first half of the season as they are now 20-0-1-1, without a regulation loss in 22 straight games.
Sunday’s game was one of their closer games as they went nearly two and a half periods either trailing or tied with the Jets.
Amherstview’s Cody Smith put the home team up 1-0 with a goal at the 13:17 mark of the first period.
That goal held until the final minutes of the second when Austin Labelle scored with help from Liam Mroueh and Brody Maracle.
Foley scored unassisted 7:11 into the third period in what would prove to be the difference maker. The Jets didn’t go down without a fight, outshooting Napanee 10-8 over the final 20 minutes. They matched them nearly shot-for-shot all night, with Napanee finishing with 32 while the Jets had 31. Bailey Maracle earned the win while Brady Sarazin took the tough luck loss. Both sides were shutout on the power-play, Napanee was 0-4 while Amherstview went 0-5.
Friday at home the Raiders doubled up on the Picton Pirates 6-3.
The game was closer than the final score may indicate as the Pirates, who are trying to crawl back into the Tod Division’s playoff picture, trailed by one heading into the final period.
Noah Westwater scored to put the Raiders up 5-3 and Brodie Maracle iced an empty-net goal with just over a minute left to put the game out of reach. Justynn Steven had two goals for Napanee while Aidan McFarland and Foley each had one.
Mitch Bown picked up with win, stopping 28 shots. Eric Tessier took the loss, turning away 38 of 43.
Napanee will begin the second half of the season Friday when they welcome the Gananoque Islanders to the SPC. Puck drop is 7:30 p.m. Napanee will look to extend the gap even further over the second place Islanders, who come in at 12-6-1-3, 14 points back of Napanee.
On Sunday the Raiders travel to Port Hope to face the Panthers.
The Jets sit third in the division at 13-7-1 (27 points), Port Hope fourth at 10-7-2-2 (24), Picton fifth at 7-12-1-1 (16) and the Campbellford Rebels sixth-though they picked up their first win of the season on Saturday, defeating the Georgina Ice to improve to 1-15-2 (four).