MORRISBURG – The Morrisburg Jr. C Lions’ 2023-24 season skated off to a positive start with a pair of wins to land the team in second place in the league after their opening weekend.
The team hosted the Almonte Inferno in their home and season opener September 23 at the Morrisburg Arena.
Eighteen year old newcomer Ashton Adams’ power play “Michigan” goal opened the Lions’ scoring nine minutes into the game. Morrisburg led 1-0 after 20 minutes.
The Lions added three goals in the second period with Adams scoring once, and Ben Lapier twice – the second a shorthanded goal in the final minute of the period. The Inferno scored twice in the period. Morrisburg continued to lead Almonte 4-2 as the teams entered the third period.
Josh Price extended the Lions’ lead to three goals, while back-to-back goals by Lapier added to the scoreboard. Almonte clawed back one goal late in the period, but Morrisburg continued on to a 7-3 win.
On Sunday, the Lions were on the road in Cumberland to take on the newly-relocated Castors, who completed their off-season move from Rockland this summer. A third period comeback secured Morrisburg’s second win of the season.
Trailing Cumberland 3-1 in the first period, Lapier’s shorthanded goal kept the Lions alive into the second period. Adams helped the Lions keep pace with the Castors’ scoring in the second period.
Still trailing 4-2 into the third period of the game, back-to-back goals by Lapier in the first two minutes tied the game 4-4. Ten minutes later, Justice Brownlee’s shorthanded goal moved Morrisburg ahead for the first time in the game. Alex Bergeron’s empty-netter secured the Lions’ 6-4 win.
A 10-point weekend by Lapier (seven goals, three assists) elevated him to the top of the league’s scoring race.
Four of the top-10 positions are held by Lions’ players. Brownlee’s seven point effort (one goal, six assists) has the veteran player third in the league. Rylan Iwachniuk’s four assists has him in sixth place, while Adams three points land him in seventh place early in the season.
The new-look Lions travel up to the Ottawa Valley Friday where they take on the Inferno September 29. The team hosts last season’s champions, the Gatineau Hull-Volant September 30 at the Morrisburg Arena. Puck drop is at 7:15 p.m.
Phillip Blancher, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Morrisburg Leader