(vol. 19W, no. 1; newsletter by k.r.)
The World Cup of Hockey is done. The NHL players are locked out. It is becoming obvious that the Coastal Pirates are becoming the only hockey game in town — and they did not disappoint.

The Pirates picked-up right where they left off in the Summer with a solid 5-1 victory over the Ducks. This was the first game under the new rules: 22-minute halves and no icing. These changes seem to lend themselves to the Pirates style because with only one break and no icing, line changes become critical — and the Pirates (more than most other teams) have two full lines at each game and can rotate fresh skaters throughout. This was the plan tonight but Wildman was a “no show,” so the Pirates played with a slightly shortened bench. (SOC note: John is now up to nine beers in fines.) The “D” rotated the trio of Keith-Mike Farrell-Dave Mathews, while up front was Chris-Jimmy-Scott and the line of Brian-LeMatty-Scooby (Scooby and LeMatty were filling-in for the Brothers Miller, while Mike was patching the hole left by Russ).

The 1st period was a feeling-out period with everyone getting used to the rule changes. No one lit the lamp until the final :30 seconds of the frame when Craig took a pass from Jimmy and scored shortside in the final :10 seconds of our first powerplay. The 1-0 lead was shortlived, however, as on the ensuing face-off (where Craig swears he was still adjusting his glove and mouthpiece) the Ducks gained control and scored with :02 seconds remaining to tie things up 1-1.

What used to be a bad omen for the Pirates would prove to be a non-factor tonight. The 2nd period proved to be all Pirates as they controlled the game and tallied four unanswered goals: a pair by Jimmy, another by Craig and even a kicked-in goal by Brian. The defense played well and if we keep this up we might even better our stingy 2.00 g.a.a. from last season. Two especially good signs from this contest were the inpact of the special teams (two powerplay goals) and the fact that the Ferraro-Sudol-Goione line — or FSG line (“For Some Goals”) — has tallied 15 points in the last two games.

So as game one of the Fall Season enters into the history books, the Pirates have a big climb to reach the Championship summit once again — the good news is that we are on the right trail.

Editor's note: Don't blame Keith for that flood of metaphors in the previous paragraph. I was trying to tie this all into the fact that Scooby recently went westward to climb Mt. Rainier in Washington state and came back with this great photo shown below. He was supposed to be plant a Coastal Pirates flag at the peak, but lack of oxygen to his brain clouded his thinking.

WON 5-1


For the GWG (along with another goal and an assist).

For his Energizer Bunny-like play that yeilded 2 goals (for a 3-point night).

For one of his best defensive outings to date — featuring diving clears and precision passing.