2007 Roller Season

Watson Leaves Squirrels, Joins Red Wings

Ben Sumner

9/26/2007

For five years, Kit Watson was the anchor the Squirrels’ defense. After playing against Marylanders for so long (and after drinking all of the beer in the state), Watson is now headed back to his hometown of Detroit for some real competition.

Watson was recruited from the New Carrolton pick-up rink in 2003, and his smart play consistently pushed the Squirrels to the top of the standings. During his tenure, the Squirrels went 69-30-10, won two roller championships and appeared in three semi-finals. With the departure of longtime captain Ed Bager, the Squirrels elected Watson as captain in 2007.

Watson scored 43 goals and had 62 assists for the Squirrels, but he will be most remembered for his defense. This past weekend, the team had a rowdy going-away party for Watson at his favorite dive, Buffalo Wings and Beer. With Watson’s departure, the Squirrels are due for a major shakeup on the 2008 roller roster.

Meanwhile, the Squirrels hit the ice on Sunday, Sept. 30, for their opening game against the Piranhas.

Enigma Ends Squirrels Season, Again

Ben Sumner

8/29/2007

Nevermind that the Squirrels had beaten Enigma twice this season. Nevermind that the Squirrels outshot Enigma 33-22 on Tuesday. Enigma won when it counted. For the second season in a row, Enigma knocked the Squirrels out of the playoffs, this time with a 5-2 win behind solid goaltending of Craig Stone.

The Squirrels found themselves in a 2-0 hole in the first period after giving up goals at 8:31 and 9:31. Enigma extended its lead in the second period with a power play goal at 2:26. The Squirrels finally got on the board at 10:41 of the second period as Chris Wautel got a shot past Stone on the power play. Two minutes later, Enigma got its three-goal advantage back. The Squirrels cut Enigma’s lead to 4-2 only moments later as Rob Myers gunned a pass through the crease to Ben Sumner, who hit it in despite having a defenseman draped on him. But then Enigma capitalized off of a late power play opportunity and sent the Squirrels packing.

The Squirrels played without Juan Canchasto, Matt Borlik and Wade Marks. Chi Pham subbed on defense. The Squirrels will now turn their attention toward ice, which begins in a couple of weeks.

Squirrels Advance Past 5 Holes

Ben Sumner

8/23/2007

The Squirrels-5 Holes rivalry continued through the 2007 season, as the 5 Holes won the first two games and the Squirrels took the third, but the third-seeded Squirrels won when it most mattered as they beat the sixth-seeded 5 Holes 6-3 Wednesday in the first round of the playoffs.

The 5 Holes struck fast as Andy Krol scored in the first 21 seconds of the game. But Jeff Ford — playing his first game since being suspended several weeks ago — tied it up two minutes later. The 5 Holes scored again eight minutes into the second period before a Rob Myers slap shot evened the game. The Squirrels got a power play and Desi Richelsen deflected in Kit Watson’s slap shot to give the Squirrels a 3-2 lead at the half.

Desi Richelsen scored his second goal of the game at 1:39 of the second period, then assisted on Phil Van der Vossen’s first goal of the season a couple of minutes later. Though the Squirrels gave up a power play goal soon after, they actually caught a break as the puck went in only a second after the first of two penalties expired, thus evening up the lines after the goal instead of allowing the 5 Holes more power play time. At 5-3, the Squirrels still had nearly half of the second period to hold on. Chris Long accepted a pass from Don Marks, shooting it past Brandon Miller to put the Squirrels up 6-3, and last year’s runner-ups exited the playoffs as good sportsmen.

The Squirrels will next play Enigma on Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 10 p.m. Meanwhile, the Swingers upset Washington Whale in the other C Division match.

The Squirrels played without Wade Marks and Matt Borlik.

Squirrels Lock Up Third Place

Ben Sumner

8/16/2007

The Chupacabras didn’t show up (except for one player who didn’t get the message) and the Screaming Squirrels got a much easier victory than expected Wednesday to lock up third place in the division. They will play either the Swingers or 5 Holes. The first-round playoff game will be on Wednesday, Agu. 22 at 8 p.m.

Baby Myers Born

Ben Sumner

8/9/2007

Less than 24 hours after his father scored a hatrick and drank beers in the parking lot after the game, Noll Robert Myers was born Wednesday, August 8th at 7:01 p.m., weighing in at 6lbs, 15oz. Rob and his wife, Rebecca, are doing fine.

Squirrels Rebound, Beat 5 Holes

Ben Sumner

8/8/2007

“Hey Milhouse, did you bring your A game or B game tonight?” Ben Sumner asked the 5 Holes’ goaltender Tuesday. “B game,” Miller replied, which the Squirrels weren’t so sure about because the 5 Holes had a 2-0 edge in the series this season. It turned out to be true. The Squirrels jumped out to a 4-0 lead and skated away with an 8-3 victory with one game remaining in the season.

Rob Myers scored three goals, Don Marks knocked in two, and Sumner, Tony Richelsen, and Kit Watson each had one. After the Squirrels went up 4-0, the 5 Holes cut the lead to 4-2 before the Squirrels started scoring again. Chris Wautel was held without a goal against his former team, and was even heckled after missing on a breakaway, but contributed five assists.

Sumner, Don Marks, Wautel, Watson, Myers, Jon Magi, Desi Richelsen and Tony Richelsen played out for the Squirrels, while Bob Sewell made 26 saves in net.

The next game is Wednesday, Aug. 15, at 8 p.m. against the Chupacabras.

Squirrels Lose Three in a Row

Ben Sumner

8/3/2007

As the playoffs approach, contenders typically gear up down the stretch by winning, but the Squirrels, an early favorite for a third championship, fell victim to Washington Whale, 11-7, on Thursday.

Down 5-0 early in the game, the Squirrels scored three in a row, only to yield three more for an 8-3 first half deficit.

The Squirrels outscored Whale 4-3 in the second half but it wasn’t nearly enough. Chris Wautel led the Squirrels with three goals and an assist, while Kit Watson had three assists and Rob Myers had a goal and two assists. Don Marks, Wade Marks and Matt Borlik also scored as Whale outshot the Squirrels, 24-20.

The Squirrels played without Chris Long, Jeff Ford, Juan Canchasto and Jon Magi. Chi Pham subbed on defense.

The next game is Tuesday, Aug. 7 at 8 p.m. against the 5 Holes.

Silver Spring Avoids Sweep

Ben Sumner

7/31/2007

With a comfortable cushion in first place going down the stretch, Silver Spring accomplished something Tuesday that they hadn’t done this season. They beat the Squirrels, the only team that has beaten them twice so far.

Silver Spring jumped out to a 1-0 lead only 44 seconds into the game. They increased it to 2-0 at 6:30. Ben Sumner wristed in a pass from Kit Watson on the power play and cut the lead to 2-1 at 7:09.

Six minutes into the second period, Silver Spring scored again before Rob Myers shot through a screen to keep the Squirrels in the game. Moments later, Silver Spring scored, then twice more and won 6-2.

Sumner, Watson, Myers, Desi Richelsen, Tony Richelsen, Phil Van der Vossen, Don Marks, Chris Wautel and Chris Long played for the Squirrels, along with goaltender Bob Sewell who kept the Squirrels in the game by turning away 30 shots.

The next game is Thursday, August 2, at 9 p.m. against Washington Whale.

Swingers Down Shorthanded Squirrels

Ben Sumner

7/24/2007

A week removed from a victory against rival Enigma, the Squirrels fell to a team that was a week removed from tying the worst team in the league. The Swingers took advantage of the Squirrels’ short bench, and skated away with a 5-2 win.

The Sqingers jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, and the Squirrels found themselves killing penalties much of the first half. Finally, the Squirrels got a power play toward the end of the first half, and Kit Watson scored to cut the lead to 2-1.Only 42 seconds into the second half, Chris Long centered a pass to Jeff Ford, who tied the game, and the Squirrels appeared to be in control. Then the penalties added up again, leading to frustration and an ejection, and the Squirrels didn’t have enough energy. The Sqingers scored three more times and held on for the win.

Matt Borlik, Long, Watson, Ford, Rob Myers, Ben Sumner, Tony Richelsen and goaltender Bob Sewell played for the Squirrels. The next game is Tuesday, at 8:30 p.m. against Silver Spring.

Squirrels Leapfrog Enigma

Ben Sumner

7/19/2007

Enigma has been on a roll lately, winners of six in a row which put them a point ahead of the Squirrels in the standings. The Squirrels needed a victory as they slipped to third place, and they got it Tuesday, beating the defending champs, 5-2.

Ben Sumner got the scoring started in the first minute of a game on a pass from Tony Richelsen. About 11 minutes later, Enigma tied the game. Then Rob Myers cut hard to the net and backhanded a shorthanded goal in to give the Squirrels a 2-1 lead a the half.

Enigma tied the game again at 7:29 of the second period. Shortly after, the Squirrels put it away. Jon Magi’s power play goal from the point put the Squirrels up 3-2 at 10:27. Less than two minutes later Chris Wautel scored. Only eight seconds off of that goal, Tony Richelsen put the Squirrels up 5-2, and the Squirrels killed off the rest of the game.

The Squirrels played without Jeff Ford, Don Marks, Wade Marks, Juan Canchasto and Phil Van der Vossen. Chi Pham subbed on defense. Bob Sewell made 25 saves in net as the Squirrels put up 24 shots.

The next game is Monday, July 23, at 9:30 p.m. against the Swingers.

Squirrels Sweep Mors ab Alto

Ben Sumner

7/10/2007

With three teams battling for first place down the stretch, the Screaming Squirrels need every point they can get and didn’t let up against Mors ab Alto in a 10-0 slaughter on Tuesday.

Chris Wautel scored three goals, Jeff Ford, Ben Sumner and Rob Myers each had two, and Chris Long netted the tenth to put Mors ab Alto out of their misery five minutes early. Mors goaltender Ryan Meeks still made 41 saves despite giving up ten goals, while Bob Sewell relaxed in net with his squeaky toy Squirrel and is credited with a one-save shutout.

The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Don Marks, Wade Marks, Phil Van der Vossen and Juan Canchasto. Chi Pham subbed on defense.

The next game is Wednesday, July 18, at 8:30 p.m. against archrivals Enigma, a game that may decide first place.

Washington Whale Stops Squirrels

Ben Sumner

6/26/2007

It’s been a while since the Squirrels took a pounding. Even the two losses to the 5 Holes earlier this season – the only two until Tuesday – were only by a goal. But even during the 8-5 loss to Washington Whale, the Squirrels made it interesting by scoring five times in the second period and staging what was almost an amazing comeback.

Off the sticks of two guys who have no business in the C league – Mike Kent and Russ Mosley – Washington Whale jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first period, the first coming only six seconds into the game and the third with nine seconds remaining in the period.

The Whale’s scoring continued in the second period as they went up 5-0 at 4:11 of the second period. The Squirrels finally answered as Jeff Ford backhanded a pass through the crease to Ben Sumner, who hammered the puck home to cut the lead to 5-1. Three minutes later, Ford scored. Five minutes later, Chris Wautel’s individual effort suddenly made the game 5-3. Whale notched another goal with five minutes remaining in the game before Desi Richelsen got his first of the season. Wautel scored again off of a slap shot to the left corner to cut the lead to 6-5, but that was as close as the Squirrels would get. Mosely scored the next goal, and then added an empty-netter. Kent finished with one goal and five assists while Mosley scored five times, more than he’s scored all season in either A league he plays in.

The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Juan Canchasto, Wade Marks and Tony Richelsen.

The next game is Tuesday, July 10, at 7:30 p.m. against Mors ab Alto.

Squirrels Chip Chupes

Ben Sumner

6/20/2007

Nevermind that the Chupacabras haven’t beaten the Squirrels in the last ten games they’ve played each other. The Chupacabras came ready for a fight Tuesday and put forth a solid effort, but the Squirrels found a way to win in a seesaw game, 6-5.

The Chupacabras got the scoring started at 3:58 of the first period before Chris Wautel’s slap-shot hit net and tied the game at 7:54. A Squirrels’ turnover led to another Chupacabras goal, and then the Chupes took a 3-1 lead at 12:47 of the first period.

Then the second period started, and the Squirrels woke up. Five minutes in, Wautel got his second goal of the game off of a rebound, then Chris Long tied the score only 10 seconds later. At 9:19, Ben Sumner’s face-off win went right to Jeff Ford’s stick, and Ford wristed in a shot to give the Squirrels the 5-4 lead. But the Chupacabras tied the game again about a minute later.

With the game tied 4-4, the Squirrels took a penalty. That hardly mattered, because Tony Richelsen skated around everyone and gave the Squirrels the lead. Less than 30 seconds later, the Chupacabras tied the game again, 5-5. At 15:37, Jon Magi darted behind the Chupes’ net and sent a pass out front to Ford, who sank in the game-winner.

The Squirrels played without Don Marks, Wade Marks, Phil Van der Vossen and Juan Canchasto.

The next game is Tuesday, June 26, at 8:30 against Washington Whale.

5 Holes Top Squirrels Again

Ben Sumner

6/12/2007

There’s never a dull moment when the Squirrels and the 5 Holes match up, and Tuesday way no exception as the 5 Holes got the better of the Squirrels, 5-4.

Chris Wautel got the scoring started against his former team only 21 seconds into the game, but Gary Goldkind of the 5 Holes tied it two minutes later with a shorthanded goal. Goldkind set up another goal at 10:04, and then the 5 Holes took a 3-1 lead with 2:35 remaining. Wautel answered with a shorthanded goal of his own at 1:25, and Jeff Ford tied the game with 26 seconds to go in an eventful and first period.

In the second period, Ford gave the Squirrels the lead at 14:30, and everything was looking up for the Squirrels. A couple of close calls nearly put the Squirrels up by more but penalties followed instead. While the 5 Holes didn’t score on the power play, twice (including once in the first period) they scored immediately after the penalty expired. Goldkind set up two more goals to give the 5 Holes the lead, and they killed off the remaining five minutes to beat the Squirrels for the second time this season – the only two losses for the Squirrels.

The 5 Holes had a 38-28 shot advantage, while the Squirrels frustrated themselves with eight minor penalties (four in each period) to the 5 Holes’ two (one in each period).

The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Tony Richelsen, Chris Long, and Juan Canchasto. The next game is Tuesday, June 19, at 9:30 p.m. against the Chupacabras.

Back in First

Ben Sumner

6/5/2007

It was a battle for first place Tuesday, as the Screaming Squirrels took on Silver Spring, a team that hasn’t lost, or even tied, since the first game of the season. And just like that first game of the season, the Squirrels came away with the victory – 3-2 – but this time in a much tighter game that could’ve gone either way.

Silver Spring got the scoring started on a power play with 3:11 remaining in the first period. The Squirrels weren’t short on opportunities during the first half, however, pouring on 15 shots, but skated into the half with a 1-0 deficit.

At 11:26 of the second period, on a power play, Ben Sumner won a faceoff directly to Jeff Ford on the left wing, and Ford wristed the puck home to tie the game. Unfortunately, seconds later Silver Spring retook the lead. But even then, the Squirrels didn’t panic, as Sumner got another pass to Ford for a goal to tie the game at 8:23. Less than a minute later, Chris Wautel scored the game-winning goal, and the Squirrels killed a late penalty to beat their rivals for the second time this season.

Bob Sewell made 20 saves in net, as the Squirrels put up 29 shots. The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Don Marks and Wade Marks. The next game is Tuesday, June 12, at 8 p.m. against the 5 Holes.

Squirrels Can’t Hang On, Tie Swingers

Ben Sumner

5/29/2007

Playing the Swingers for the first time Tuesday, the Squirrels knew the team had speed. That became apparent only eight seconds into the game as they took a 1-0 lead. But the Squirrels controlled the rest of the first period before the Swingers found their form, and the teams skated off to a 5-5 tie.

After being down 1-0 off of the opening face-off, Ben Sumner found Jeff Ford streaking down the middle, and Ford roofed the puck at 12:15 of the first period. At 6:46, a Don Marks slap shot put the Squirrels up 2-1. A couple of minutes later, Sumner hurled the puck from the left side, and it deflected in for a 3-1 lead. With 1:34 remaining in the first period, Rob Myers got a pretty pass from Kit Watson to put the Squirrels up 4-1 on a power play.

Then the second period started. While the Squirrels got their share of chances, a few breakdowns led to three straight goals over a seven-minute stretch. With 5:24 remaining, the Swingers tied the game at 4-4. On the very next shift, Ford connected with Sumner, who chipped in the puck to regain the lead. The Squirrels couldn’t hold on. With :58 seconds remaining, the Squirrels got caught deep during a long shift, and the Swingers tied the game at 5-5.

The Squirrels outshot the Swingers, 36-23. The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Tony Richelsen and Juan Canchasto.

The next game is Tuesday, June 5, at 9 p.m. against Silver Spring, who the Squirrels are battling with for first place.

Squirrels Barbeque After Game

Ben Sumner

5/24/2007

After the Screaming Squirrels’ 6-0 victory Thursday, they could only thank Mors ab Alto for fielding enough players to avoid the forfeit. Death From Above only had one sub, and hardly challenged Squirrels goaltender Bob Sewell as he earned a seven-save shutout.

Meanwhile, Mors ab Alto goaltender Ryan Meeks played another superb game despite the loss, holding the Squirrels to only two goals in the first period behind a very tired team. Tony Richelsen scored three goals, captain Kit Watson had two and an assist, and Wade Marks scored one while falling down.

The Squirrels played without Don Marks, Jeff Ford, Rob Myers, Phil Van der Vossen and Jon Magi. Chi Pham played his first game of the season.

The next game is Tuesday, May 29, at 7:30 p.m. against the Swingers.

Squirrels Settle for Tie

Ben Sumner

5/22/2007

The game could have gone either way. A bounce here, a post there, the game was close to being out of reach and the Squirrels could have skated away to their fifth straight victory – or they could’ve lost. Instead, as the buzzer sounded, the tie seemed like a blessing.

Enigma scored first as their ‘sub’ – who was wearing a completely different colored jersey than the rest of Enigma – skated around several players and put one through goaltender Bob Sewell. Chris Wautel tied the game late in the first period as he stood alone in front of the net and collected a pass from Jeff Ford.

Enigma took the lead in the second period, but the Squirrels battled back as Wautel and Ford each had a goal from passes by Ben Sumner. With about three minutes to go, the Squirrels took a penalty, and a deflected shot into the Squirrels’ net tied the game.

The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Don Marks, Wade Marks, and Juan Canchasto. The next game is Thursday, at 7:30 p.m. against Mors ab Alto.

Game notes: The tie likely drops the Squirrels to second place, as Silver Spring – a team the Squirrels beat earlier in the season – has yet to lose or tie another… Team captain Kit Watson celebrated his 28th birthday.

Four in a Row

Ben Sumner

5/15/2007

On paper, anyone who sees that the first-place Screaming Squirrels only beat winless Mors ab Alto 3-1 would wonder why the game was so close. Anyone who saw the game would have seen the rink tilted to the Squirrels’ advantage as Mors’ goaltender Ryan Meeks made save after save after save.

The Squirrels put up 21 shots in the first period – 47 total – but didn’t score until there were 14 seconds remaining as Jeff Ford one-timed a shot over Meeks’ catching glove shoulder. The second goal came at 12:11 of the second period, when Matt Borlik hit one home from in close. Don Marks trickled a shot through on a power play with 1:17 remaining. With 26 seconds to go in the game, just about everyone stopped skating and Mors got their only goal.

The Squirrels played without Tony Richelsen, Rob Myers, Chris Wautel and Juan Canchasto. The next game is Tuesday, May 22, at 9:30 p.m. against Enigma.

Moving on Up

Ben Sumner

5/10/2007

The Squirrels had a quality victory Thursday, beating defending champs Enigma, 6-2, before two enthusiastic fans.

The match started out like last season’s semifinal playoff game (which Enigma won, 1-0) – heavy on the defense. Kit Watson got the scoring started early in the period with a second-effort shot to put the Squirrels ahead, 1-0. Enigma tied it, and the game was 1-1 at the half.

Early in the second half, Enigma’s Mike Vogt skated around everyone and tapped in a shot past goaltender Bob Sewell. Then the floodgates opened. Ben Sumner hit Matt Borlik in front of the net with a pass, and the game was tied, 2-2. Jeff Ford scored to put the Squirrels ahead. Then Ford scored again. The Squirrels got a scare as Don Marks went head-first into the boards. Seeing the injury, the referee blew the whistle a split second before Enigma scored a would-be goal. Marks was a little woozy, but managed to play again. Up 4-2, the Squirrels scored two more late in the game. Very similar to their first connection for a goal, Sumner found Borlik in front of the net again and the Squirrels went up 5-2. Then Ford scored his third of the game – his 10th of the season after only five games. The Squirrels outshot Enigma, 26-25. Chirs Wautel, who played defense, finished the game with three assists.

The Squirrels only had two full lines, and were missing Juan Canchasto, Phil Van der Vossen, Desi Richelsen, Tony Richelsen, Wade Marks and Rob Myers. The next game is Tuesday, May 15 at 9 p.m. against Mors ab Alto.

Squirrels Harpoon Whale

Ben Sumner

5/9/2007

A shorthanded goal is often cause for celebration, and the Squirrels got two of them Tuesday en route to a 5-1 victory against Washington Whale behind solid goaltending by Bob Sewell.

Chris Wautel put the Squirrels on the board five minutes into the game. Two minutes later, while killing a penalty, Kit Watson caught a deflected shot and skated 3/4 the length of the rink to put the Squirrels up 2-0. Shortly after, only four seconds into a power play, Ben Sumner won a face off directly to Jeff Ford, who sent the puck in with a quick, low wrist shot. Ford scored his second of the game – this time shorthanded – on a breakaway, putting the Squirrels up 4-0 at the half.

The Whale scored on a power play at the beginning of the second period to cut the lead to 4-1. Chris Long gave the Squirrels a four-goal lead again a few minutes later, and the score stood for the rest of the game.

Matt Borlik, Rob Myers, and Juan Canchasto missed the game, as the Squirrels put up 28 shots on net.

The next game is Thursday, at 9 p.m. against last season’s champions, Enigma.

Extra Squirrel Gives Team a Boost

Ben Sumner

5/2/2007

Anyone watching the Squirrels’ 4-2 win over the Chupacabras Wednesday would have wondered what exactly was on the back of goaltender Bob Sewell’s helmet. A rat? No, it was a stuffed squirrel, strapped on. And the Squirrels would like to think their furry mascot gave them the advantage as they beat the Chupacabras for the fifth time in a row.

The Chupacabras struck first, however, at 9:38 of the first period. Rob Myers tied it with a slap shot on the power play a few minutes later.

With time running down on a two-man advantage, Jeff Ford gave the Squirrels the lead early in the second period. Ford scored again shortly after on a perfect centering pass from Rob Myers. With about two minutes remaining, Chris Wautel got broke loose while killing a penalty and put the Squirrels up 4-1. The Chupacabras got a power play goal 13 seconds later, but the score stood.

The Squirrels played without Don Marks, Wade Marks, and Phil Van der Vossen. Sewell made 27 saves in net, as the Squirrels put up 35. The next game is Tuesday, May 8, at 8:30 p.m. against Washington Whale.

5 Holes Get Past Squirrels

Ben Sumner

4/24/2007

It was another close 5 Holes-Squirrels game Tuesday, and this time the 5 Holes came out on top with a 2-1 victory. This was despite the fact that the Squirrels led much of the game, but a lack of offensive punch and a couple of breakdowns doomed them in the end.

On the first shift of the game, Jeff Ford centered to Ben Sumner, who scored to give the Squirrels the lead. The 5 Holes said Sumner kicked the puck in the net but the referrees said it was a goal. The 1-0 lead stood throughout the first period, and well into the second period. Squirrels goaltender Bob Sewell was brilliant in net, making many saves. But then one got in. And another. Down a man in the last two minutes, the Squirrels had one last chance to tie the game. Kit Watson sent a slap shot toward Sumner in front of the 5 Holes net, hoping for a goal off a deflection like last week, but lightning didn’t strike twice.

The Squirrels played without Matt Borlik, Phil Van der Vossen, Chi Pam and Jon Magi. The next game is Wednesday, at 8 p.m. against the Cupacabras.

Squirrels Open With Win

Ben Sumner

4/17/2007

The rust was apparent, but the Squirrels shook it off in the second half and defeated Silver Spring, 8-5, on Tuesday.

Don Marks, Chris Long and the new guy, Chris Wautel, scored in the first half as the teams skated to a 3-3 draw. Silver Spring took the lead early in the second half, but then Jeff Ford got a centering pass from Ben Sumner to tie the game. Only 19 seconds later, Ford sent a pass back to new team captain Kit Watson, who took a slap shot which deflected off of the middle of Sumner’s stick into the net. Rob Myers scored with 1:43 remaining in the game to give the Squirrels a 6-4 lead. When Silver Spring pulled their goalie a minute later, Jeff Ford scored on the empty net. But then Silver Spring scored again, and pulled their goalie again. And Ford scored another empty-netter to get the hat-trick.

The Squirrels outshot Silver Spring 24-21. Juan Canchasto, Phil Van der Vossen, Matt Borlik and Chi Pham missed the game for the Squirrels, who have one of the deepest lineups in the league.

The next game is Tuesday, April 24, at 8:30 p.m. against The 5 Holes.

League Commissioner Retires

Ben Sumner

4/15/2007

Sam Apple, longtime hockey commissioner at the Gardens Ice House in Laurel, formally announced his retirement to the players across the league Sunday. Apple handled both the ice and roller leagues.

“I wanted to announce this to everyone to squelch any rumors that may, or might, be floating about. It’s a decision that I have been thinking about for some time, and the time is right for me to go. That’s it, plain and simple.”

Roller Schedule Released

Ben Sumner

4/6/2007

The Laurel C division will have some familiar faces as the 2007 roller season begins in a couple of weeks. The Squirrels will be reacquainted with Silver Spring, The 5 Holes, Chupacabras, Enigma and Mors ab Alto, and will face Washington Whale and the Swingers for the first time. The Squirrels will play these teams three times each, except for the Swingers, who they will only play twice.

A quick look at each team:

The Screaming Squirrels will make a push for a third championship in five years after adding high-scorer Chris Wautel from the 5 Holes to their roster.

Defending champs Enigma are expected to be a threat with new skater Mike Vogt, who also plays for the Dragons in the B Division, and used to play with the Shockwave on Sundays with Squirrels Kit Watson and Bob Sewell.

Silver Spring started strong last season then fizzled. If attendance is not an issue for this team, they can beat anyone at any time.

The 5 Holes, runner-ups two of the past three seasons, will have to step it up a notch as they not only play without Chris Wautel, but must overcome a couple of suspensions carried over from last season. However, they managed to pick up the league’s leading scorer, Greg Goldkind, after Goldkind’s team, Snipe, folded. Goldkind led the league in scoring by a wide margin last season.

The Chupacabras once in a while pull off a victory against a top-notch team, but typically finish in the middle of the pack. Two seasons ago they knocked off the heavily-favored Hurricanes to make it to the championship game before getting beat by the Squirrels

Unless Mors ab Alto added some scorers, they may be bottom-dwellers again.

Washington Whale comes from the weeknight B division. They have hard-nosed players and can skate with just about anyone, but an aging lineup has presumably slowed them over the years.

The Squirrels will no longer have to worry about Snipe, who folded after being told they would move up to the B division, or the Hurricanes, who requested to be moved back down to C. Also gone are the Bullhawks and Storm. The Squirrels know little about the Swingers.

The Squirrels team practice will be Thursday, April 12, at 8 p.m. All games this season will be in the Logsdon Pavilion, aka the back rink.

Wautel Joins Squirrels Roller Team

Ben Sumner

3/15/2007

The Screaming Squirrels picked up free-agent Chris Wautel from rival the 5 Holes, after the 5 Holes decided to trim down their roster.

Wautel, who the Squirrels have played against for years while he was on Mors ab Alto and the 5 Holes, is bound to greatly improve the Squirrels’ scoring numbers in 2007. He had 35 goals and 16 assists for 51 points in 2006, figuring into nearly half of the 5 Holes’ scoring.

The Screaming Squirrels unanimously approved adding Wautel to the roster while trading stories of roughing him up and shutting him down (though he scored a goal or two to haunt the Squirrels.)

He will be #96.

In other news, goaltender Bob Sewell squashed retirement rumors and is currently training for the upcoming season.