Demons open up the 2016 season with 2 wins on the road in Grand Rapids

Demons open up the 2016 season with 2 wins on the road in Grand Rapids

The Cleveland Demons started the 2016 season with a 2-0 record at the Grand Rapids Tournament.

Game 1: Cleveland Demons 7, Grand Rapids Dragonfish 1

The defense of the CILL Cup started on Saturday with a re-match of the 2015 final between the host Dragonfish and the CILL Champions Demons. Cleveland was able to jump out to a quick lead and control the tempo of play throughout the first half. By the time the Dragonfish finally scored their first goal, the Demons had the game well at hand. Mid-way through the third period, the game was called due to a tornado that touched down a few miles from the rink. The game was called after a long delay and the Cleveland Demons were declared the winner to open the 2016 season 1-0. The Demons were a balanced offense on Saturday as forward Nate Jones had a hat trick. Single tallies were posted by Brandon Sallee, David Blue, Steve Jones, and Tyler Murphy. Sallee and Blue also had 3 assists a piece. Steve Jones contributed with 2 assists as well. Murphy, Matt Milano, and Rory Jeffers also tallied assists on the day. Josh Stephens and Charlie Joyce contributed to the offensive cause with solid play in the corners. Sam Carmony battled it out in the middle of the field at the face-off X. His control of the X gave the Demons many key possessions. Defensively, Bobby Lyle was spectacular in the cage by recording 32 saves and giving up just 1 goal. Defensive players in Jon Hurm, Eli George, Kevin Werner, Brian Holzheimer, Matt Milano, and rookie Logan Malson played hard deep in the corners and took away numerous Dragonfish scoring threats. Transition runners Rory Jeffers and Alex Skvarch were able to give the Demon’s forwards possessions and time to attack the cage. Veteran defender Mark Sertich was forced to leave the game with a shoulder injury. Dan Clem and Brent Zubal were not able to play due to injuries, but helped the team with statistics and video coverage.

Goalie Lyle 32 saves
Scoring Sallee 1g, 3 a; Blue 1g, 3a; N. Jones 3 g; S. Jones 1 g, 2 a; Murphy 1g, 1a; Milano 1a, Jeffers 1a

Game 2: Cleveland Demons 12, St. Louis Centurions 10

Sunday’s game against the first year St. Louis Centurions was a hard hitting physical contest from the opening whistle. The two teams traded hits, issued punishing body shots, and pumped shots into the back of the net. By the end of the 1st period, Cleveland held a 4-2 lead. St. Louis was not to be kept down; however, and rallied to tie the game at 6 by half time. Opening the 3rd, Cleveland was able to post 2 quick goals, but St. Louis tied the game at 8 as the 3rd period ended. Cleveland stepped up its game as the intensity of the moment tripped the Centurions up. Several power plays and a game misconduct for St. Louis gave the Demons the spark they needed to grasp the 12-10 victory.

Leading the offense for Cleveland was Brandon Sallee with 3 goals and 3 assists. David Blue added 1 goal and 5 assists from his right forward spot. Big Nate Jones was able to find the back of the net 3 times and add 2 helpers. Tyler Murphy had a big game with 2 goals and 3 assists. Rookie Josh Stephens recorded his first goal and 2 more. Charlie Joyce was able to assist on a Stephens goal. Steve Jones, although not in the scoring column was able to provide some transition support and physical play. Transition runners Sam Carmony (face-offs), Rory Jeffers (1 assist) and Alex Skvarch were once again instrumental in providing possessions for the Demons offense and assisting on the defensive side of the floor. In the goal, Bobby Lyle provided veteran leadership and came up with some huge saves when needed. He finished with 42 saves in the game. The strength of the Demons team has been the defense over the past two seasons. Once again, Eli George, Jon Hurm, Brian Holzheimer (1 assist), Matt Milano, Logan Malson, and Kevin Werner played aggressive and physical defense against the Centurions offense.

Due to injury, Dan Clem, Brent Zubal, and Mark Sertich helped run the doors and keep stats for the Demons.

Goalie Lyle 42 saves
Scoring Sallee 3g, 3a; Blue 1g 5a; N. Jones 3g, 2a; Murphy 2g, 3a; Stephens 3g; Joyce 1a; Holzheimer 1a; Jeffers 1a; Lyle 1a

Up Next: Cleveland Demons Shootout (Saturday September 10 vs. the Chicago Outlaws at 4:00 pm and Sunday September 11 vs. the Detroit Coney Dogs at 1:00 pm)