ARNPRIOR – The West Carleton Rivermen scored the first four goals of last Saturday’s (Nov. 13) home game and kept filling the net against an overmatched Gananoque Islanders winning 10-3 in the Rivermen’s only game at the Bert Hall Arena in Arnprior this November.
The Ottawa Valley’s best kept hockey secret, the Rivermen and the Eastern Ontario Super Hockey League (EOSHL) continue to bring highly competitive and highly entertaining Senior A hockey to eastern Ontario and western Quebec.
Attendance numbers vary across the 12-team league featuring hockey players with a variety of high-level hockey experience including Jr. A, NCAA, Canadian University, OHL, European semi-pro, and AHL experience. The Rivermen sit at the lower half of those attendance numbers recording 71 fans at last Saturday’s game.
Frontenac drew 70 fans for their Saturday game. At the other end of the spectrum, the South Grenville Rangers attracted 185 fans, and the North Dundas Rockets attracted 317 fans for their Saturday game against the league-leading Smith Falls Rideaus. When the Rivermen visited the 2019-2020 EOSHL champion Cornwall Prowlers the week (Nov. 6) before, 223 fans went to the game.
With the win, the Rivermen (5 wins- 2 losses- 0 ties- 1 overtime win- 1 overtime loss) are firmly in second in the EOSHL West Division with 13 points. They are five points behind the Rideaus (8-1-0-1-0) who lost their first game of the season Saturday. The Rivermen are firmly entrenched in a playoff spot with an eight-point cushion, as the top four teams in the two six-team divisions make the playoffs.
The Islanders (2-5-0-0-1) are one of those West Division teams sitting at five points and proved no problem for the Rivermen Saturday night.
Kingston native Eric Lanciault, 32, led the charge for the Rivermen scoring a hat trick and being named the games first star.
Nepean’s Dave Gervais, 32, chipped in with a goal and two assists and was named second start. Gervais played four seasons of NCAA Division III hockey with Neumann University.
Carp’s Ryley Egan, 30, was the third start with two assists. The 30-year-old played with the Ottawa Valley Titans U18 AAA team in 2007-2008, in the American Collegiate Hockey Association and for Björninn of the Icelandic Hockey League before joining the Rivermen in the team’s inaugural season.
Galetta’s Adrian Moyes, 32, who is also team owner, also scored in the game.
Giant 6’3”, 225-pound Orleans native Basem Awwad, 42, had two assists for the Rivermen.
The game was important for the Rivermen, not only for securing its position in the EOSHL standings, but in securing many of its players for the EOSHL playoffs.
Players must play a certain amount of games for their teams in order to be eligible for the playoffs. The Rivermen’s top nine scorers are now eligible to play for the team in the EOSHL playoffs, including team points leader Alex Hulford (9 games played, 6 goals, six assists), Egan (9 GP, 3 G, 7 A), Zach Rheaume (7 GP, 1 G, 8 A), Carp’s Ryley Hennigar (6 GP, 5 G, 2 A), Awwad (7 GP, 1 G, 6 A), David Nelson (8 GP, 1 G, 6 A), Stephen Blunden (6 GP, 2 G, 6 A), former Arnprior Packer Stephen Bird (7 GP, 3 G, 3 A) and Moyes (9 GP, 3 G, 3 A).
Fitzroy Harbour’s Payton Jardine (6 GP, 0 G, 1 A), Matt Denis, Stittsville’s Ryan Duhaime and Lanciault have also qualified for the playoffs as Rivermen players. So far, no Rivermen goalie has qualified.
The Rivermen are now on the road for their next three games against the top of the table Rideaus, the Tween Oil Kings and the Frontenac Phantoms before returning home on Saturday, Dec. 5 for a rare afternoon game with a 2:45 p.m. start.
Tickets at the door
- Adults $10
- Senior $8
- Youth 13-17 $5
- Under 12 free
Proof of vaccination required.