The Sudbury Novice Rockhounds would have dearly loved to be able to bank a goal or two from round-robin play, tapping into their "Get out of Jail" free card once the playoffs hit at the 2019 Bulldog Classic Tournament hosted earlier this month by the Halton Hills Minor Lacrosse Association.
The closest of their preliminary matches would come in the opener as the Rockhounds put eight up on the board against the Shelburne Vets, surrendering just a single goal against as seven different players lit the lamp for Sudbury.
Scoring twice, Hunter Currie was joined on the scoresheet by Joshua Bell, Andrew Roney, Zeebin Ashawasegai, Max Jouppi, Koda Peltier and Jackson Mead.
Sudbury would hit double digits for the first time the next morning, pounding the Guelph Royals 10-0, with Hunter Currie showing the way with a four-goal effort.
Max Jouppi chipped in with a hat trick and Joshua Bell, Declan McGonegal and Koda Peltier capped things off as netminder Brady Toulouse registered his first of two consecutive shutouts.
The disparity from top to bottom, in their division, was most evident, however, in game three as the Rockhounds throttled the Wallaceburg Griffins 16-0, with Joshua Bell (3), Jackson Mead (2), Max Jouppi (2), Koda Peltier (2) and Hunter Currie (2) all finding the back of the net on multiple occasions.
Goals by Joely Angus, Liam Hagen, Owen Angus, Andrew Roney and Malik Jakubo rounded out the scoring in a game in which the Rockhounds made things incredibly easy for goaltender Brady Toulouse.
All of that offense, however, mattered little in the semi-final battle as the Nepean Knights edged the locals 4-3, burying the game-winning tally with just 3.9 seconds showing on the clock.
Rounding out the team roster are Damien Dell, Reid Bombardieri and Etienne Hutchings, with head coach Dan Mead, assistant coach Scott Currie and trainer Andrew Bell handling bench duties.