ELMIRA, NY– The Danbury Colonials suffered their first loss of the season in Elmira last night, as the Junior Soaring Eagles came away with a 4-0 victory.
Despite near-constant pressure from the Colonials offense, Soaring Eagles goaltender Nick Konkel turned aside all 32 shots thrown his way, pitching his first shutout of his junior career and earning the first Star of the Game.
Elmira struck nine minutes into the first when forward Masaki Kawashima broke through with a one-time goal. The lead was extended with only 22 seconds remaining in the frame as defenseman Sam Miller buried a powerplay goal.
Kawashima would add another goal in the second period, with the Eagles potting an empty-netter late in the third. Colonials netminder Shane O’Brien finished with 32 saves in the loss.
“I’m proud of how hard our guys played tonight,” Colonials head coach Kevin Cunningham commented after the game. “They battled for 60 minutes and should see that they are capable of playing with a quality team like Elmira.”
Elmira, formerly the Binghamton Jr. Senators, is the three-year reigning Northeast Division champion. Cunningham pointed out that his Danbury team was able to penetrate the defense and generate plenty of net-front pressure, especially when attempting a comeback in the late goings of the game.
“We ran into a hot goalie and a veteran team made us pay for our mistakes,” he explained. “When you add that up it leads to a win for them, but there were a lot of encouraging signs from our point of view.”
Danbury will be back in action in Elmira against the same Soaring Eagles team tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Murray Athletic Center.
Article by Casey Bryant