On December 1, the Varsity Blues men’s hockey team faced the Waterloo Warriors at Varsity Arena for their second faceoff this season. Following their previous 5–4 win against the Warriors on November 4, the Blues dominated the ice yet again in an outshining 7–2 triumph. 

What happened

The Warriors kicked off the first period by scoring their first goal just five minutes in. However, when the Warriors were given a penalty 14 minutes into the period, Blues Captain Cole Purboo, assisted by defenseman Nick Grima and second-year forward Nicholas Wong, secured the Blues’ first power-play goal of the night. 

Soon after, first-year forward Julian Recine was given a penalty for tripping, which gave the Warriors a power-play opportunity. Despite the Warriors’ advantage, first-year forward Christian Stevens, assisted by third-year forward Owen Robinson, scored a short-handed goal with one minute remaining, ending the first period with a 2–1 lead. 

Blues captain, Cole Purboo, finished the game with 2 goals. KATE WANG/THE VARSITY

The Blues gained further momentum in the second period, with second-year forward Graham Dickerson, assisted by second-year forward Jacob King, scoring a short-handed goal 10 minutes in. Dickerson returned the favour later, setting up King for another short-handed goal four minutes later. The Warriors narrowed the gap with a goal in the final two minutes of the period but the Blues maintained control, ensuring a 4–2 lead as the period ended. 

The Blues showcased their dominance in the third period. Second-year forward Zack Smith assisted by Grima and third-year forward Ben Woodhouse netted the Blues’ fifth goal of the night. Wong and Grima stepped forward again and helped Purboo score his second goal of the night. To top it off, Robinson, assisted by Grima and first-year defenseman Zack Terry, sealed the deal with the final goal for the Blues. The Warriors were unable to fight back, resulting in a 7–2 victory for the Blues. 

Zack Smith scored the Blues’ fifth goal of the night. KATE WANG/THE VARSITY

“We came together as a team and battled a lot of adversity,” said Purboo in a postgame interview with The Varsity. “We took a bunch of penalties, but we were able to capitalize on the special teams and maintain a positive mindset.” He praised Grima’s strong vision and skills — he finished the game with four assists — and King’s performance throughout the night. Blues goaltender Jett Alexander also performed strongly, saving 31 out of 33 shots.

“We have a couple of injuries and even I’m banged up with my body and exams, so it’s nice to take that time [off],” Grima said in a postgame interview with The Varsity. “But we’ll still be practicing and trying to stay sharp.” 

What’s next

The Blues currently rank second in the Ontario University Athletics West Division. Now, they’ll enjoy a well-deserved winter break before returning to play against the Nipissing University Lakers in North Bay on January 5.