Bitter home loss for the Tornado Luxembourg
The 2009/2010 season starts with a disappointing home loss for Tornado. Even though the Tornado squad mostly dominated their opponents from Chalons, the home team squandered what seemed to be a guaranteed win in the last 5 minutes by taking unneccessary penalties and playing shorthanded for over 4 minutes at the end of the game.
In front of a crowd of 150 spectators, the first period started out on quite an even footing as far as scoring chances were concerned. Chalons tested still-Tornado goaltender Gilles Mangen right off the bat with a couple of chances on give-aways, but were unable to score on a sharp Mangen.
Tornado's first line of Welter, Scheier and Androne stormed towards the Chalons net, but were unable to capitalize on various occasions. Even the help of Chalons lack of discipline towards the middle of the period went almost unused as Tornado only managed to capitalize on the 4th powerplay - a 5 on 3 even - when Markus Eriksson - who played his last Tornado game before leaving for university abroad - scored on a pass by Francois Schons and Pierre Huther at 17:18. A sigh of relief went through the Tornado ranks, but it was only of short duration as Chalons' Zavodoy managed to score on a 2-1 break-away right at the buzzer at 19:59. An unlucky break for the home team right before heading off to the dressing room.
The second period started with more pressure from Tornado on the Chalons net and a better execution so that the same Eriksson was able to tally his second goal of the night on a pass by Patrick Schon and Huther again at 24:28. Tornado seemed to gain control of the game, but Chalons was not willing to give up and got back into the game at 32:59 when Vieillard scored. Tornado then got denied two goals that crossed the line but went unnoticed by the referees, one by Thierry Holtzem and one by Benny Welter. The first one was quickly swooped back by the Chalons goaltender before the ref made it to the goal and the second one was on a deflection that hit the back of the net and came straight out in one fast motion.
Even though luck was not on Tornado's side, the go-ahead goal came from Tornado's Thierry Holtzem after a quick neutral zone play with Kai Linster and Eric Wambach at 36:55. With a score of 3-2, both teams headed to the break.
The third period was marked by a flurry of roughing penalties in what became a physical game and a bitter end for the home team.
The first ten minutes of the period saw little action and Tornado seemed to be cruising to a deserved win. They even managed to extend the lead to 4-2 when Benny Welter scored at the end of a powerplay after taking the pass from Ronny Scheier and Fredrik Olsen at 49:27. A minute later, the referees called double minors on each side for roughing with Holtzem heading to the box only to see Milano join him 16 seconds later with another double minor. Chalons used the stir-up to cut the Tornado lead in half at 52:00. Then it got ugly. During yet another scramble in front of the net, the referees sent 3 Tornado players to the box so that Chalons had a 5-on-3 powerplay for almost 4 minutes. At 56:10, they capitalized on the first chance to even the score and with Schons still in the box, they scored the 5-4 at 58:33 to take an unexpected 2 points away from Tornado. Even pulling the goaltender for an extra man did not help and Tornado suffers a very disappointing home loss.
Hopefully Tornado recovers quickly and can get to a different result in Strasbourg next Saturday.