Written by Stuart Miller-Davis
Photo by Marc Lafleur
OTTAWA, Ontario – Jared Steege (Cobden, ON) notched the overtime winner to send the Carleton Ravens over defending OUA champion McGill Redmen in their OUA East semi-final matchup by a 4-3 final.
“Total character by the players in our dressing room,” Ravens head coach Shaun Van Allen said following the game. “They put themselves in some tough situations. Losing game one at home and having to go to Montreal and win. Coming back here and losing a two goal lead in the third and still believing in themselves.”
The Redmen opened the scoring when forward Christophe Lalonde fired a shot on goal and Jerome Verrier backhanded the rebound up and over the blocker of Ravens goaltender Francois Brassard (Gatineau, QC).
The Ravens responded quickly when Steege and defenceman Josh Burnside (Brampton, ON) burst into the McGill zone and Steege patiently out weighted the lone defenceman before feeding Burnside. Burnside redirected the puck up and over goaltender L.P Guindon for the tie.
The second period began tied at one goal apiece, but the Ravens looked determined to grab the lead. On the power play, defenceman Evan de Hann skated into the McGill zone and fired a quick shot that snuck through Guindon’s legs and into the net.
The Ravens extended their advantage when Hayden Hulton (Kingston, ON) made a quick turnaround shot that fouled Guindon for the captain’s first goal since the 2016-17 playoffs.
In the third, the Carleton lead fell apart as the Redmen came out of the dressing room with lots of jump in their step. They reduced the deficit to one when the puck found its way behind Brassard in a mad scramble in the Ravens crease.
The Redmen tied the game up when defenceman Nathanael Halbert found forward Guillaume Gauthier wide open for an easy tap in up over the left pad of Brassard.
In overtime, Steege got the winner when the McGill defence coughed up the puck straight to the second year forward and he wired a quick wrist shot past Guindon.
“Puck popped out in the slot and I kind of blanked out,” Steege said about the play on the winning goal. “I just tried to fire it and catch the goalie off guard.”
“We were the better team in overtime,” Van Allen said. “Jared Steege has got arguably the best shot in the league and that’s who we wanted taking the shot from the slot.”
The Ravens will move onto the OUA East finals for the first time since the 2015-16 season and will face the Queen’s Gaels, who pulled off a dramatic 6-5 win over the uOttawa Gee-Gees.
“We aren’t focused on who we are paying at this point,” Steege said. “We want to keep our heads down and the game plan the same. We want to play the same no matter who we play.”
RAVENS PLAYER OF THE GAME:
#16 Jared Steege–Forward– 2nd year – Cobden, ON