It was a day-long celebration of the inline game on Sunday, as the Anaheim Ducks i3 Roller Hockey League held its championships at The Rinks - Irvine Inline. Ducks radio color analyst Dan Wood and TV color analyst Brian Hayward, were on hand to announce all of the games in an event that also featured Wild Wing and the Anaheim Ducks Street Team.
The first game of the day featured the Division 1B Championship, as the No. 1-seeded Crossroads Christian Cougars took on the Grace Lutheran Lightning. Grace Lutheran, looking for its first win of the season, fell behind early after Crossroads Christian forward Brandon Quinty put the Cougars up 3-0. After the first intermission, Grace Lutheran looked inspired scoring the next four straight, pulling the game even 4-4 after the second period. The third period was back-and-forth as both teams managed to score two goals, including a late Grace Lutheran goal by Perry Lightfoot.
The crowd was on its feet for sudden death overtime as both teams had opportunities to finish the game. With 3:12 left in OT, Lightfoot, roofed a 10-foot wrist shot for the game-winner. The win celebrated two firsts for Grace Lutheran, their first win of the season, and first i3 championship title. Lightfoot was named MVP with four goals in the championship game.
The next game of the day featured the Division 1A Semi-Finals as defending champion Friends Christian Lions faced off against the Calvary Chapel Eagles. Late in the first period, Friends Christian defensemen Bowen Frabotta, scored to sway the momentum of the game in Friends’ favor. From there on out, Friends dominated the game and pulled away as they moved on to the championship game to face the No. 1-seeded Huntington Christian Dolphins.
The game of the day featured the Division 1A championship, as the defending i3 champions Friends Christian took on the top seed, Huntington Christian Dolphins for the Silver Skate Award. The game started out with an experienced Friends Christian team jumping out to a 3-1 lead at the end of the first. Friends continued to dominate the action in the second period as Friends defensemen Parker Brakebill put the Lions on top 8-5 to end the second period.
The third period saw the momentum swing the Dolphins’ way as they scored three unanswered goals, including a game-tying goal by forward Brandon Washiashi with 4:44 left to knot it up at 8-8. Both goalies made incredible saves late in the third period to keep the game tied, until Lions forward Parker Brakebill scored the game-winner with 1:14 left by putting a perfectly placed backhand shot past the Dolphins netminder. The Dolphins had a few opportunities with less than a minute left, but couldn't get one past Lions goalie Billy Lopez. Bowen Frabotta was named game MVP for Friends Christian with three goals and three assists to lead the Lions to their second consecutive championship.
In between each i3 playoff game was the S.C.O.R.E. Shootout Learn to Play event. Nearly 30 participants took advantage of the offer and came out to learn how to play the sport of roller hockey. All participants had the chance to dress in roller hockey gear and learn the sport from top-notch coaches. For their efforts, each Learn to Play participant took home a roller hockey puck and stick.
The Anaheim Ducks i3 Roller Hockey League Playoffs concluded an action-packed year. The Ducks would like to thank each participant of the i3 League for their sportsmanship and dedication throughout the year. We look forward to seeing you next season!
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