Friday, May 09, 2008

AMHL Tuesday: Lucky Charms

Image courtesy of PaddyMurphy at flickr.com
Tuesday May 6, 2008


“Is maith an t-anlann an t-ocras.” Translation from Gaelic: “Hunger is the best sauce.”

So who wants a Koffey Cup victory more this morning, Leafs or Flyers?

Late in the first period, the Leafs are leading 2–1 and are on the attack. Leaf Brendan Doyle is too close to the net and Flyer Mike Moore lets him know it. Irish tempers flare, and the two take to pushing and shoving.

Before a donnybrook erupts, the two are separated and then sent to their penalty boxes.

“The boys are here to play,” says referee Kenny O’Mato (He says Amato. I say O’Mato) to his colleague, Peter Bagley and this reporter. “Emotions are running high.”

Less than a minute into the second period, the Leafs—skating right to left across Dave Goucher’s streaming imagination—attack. Doyle pushes a rebound past netminder Mitch “Edel” Weiss. Mitch must shoulder the unenviable nickname of the white regal-looking flower, and Doyle has a shamrock tattoo on his right shoulder.

After Moore scores, cutting the Leafs’ lead to 3–2, Brendan watches his little brother skate to the sin bin. Jeremy, about nine years Brendan’s junior, quenches his thirst with a few swigs of Gatorade as his teammates stymie the Flyers’ power play.

Not long after the younger Doyle exits the box, teammate Mike “MmmBop” Hansen lifts a backhand shot over Weiss’s glove—and into the net? The Flyers say no, but the on-ice officials say yes.

Marshall McLean, the Flyer’s go-to guy all season long, scores his second goal this morning, slashing the Leaf’s lead in half again. 4–3 at the second intermission.

“I wanna go upstairs,” says O’Mato. But league officials hired to review controversial play-off goals are rumored to be guarding the donuts instead of monitoring the expensive video technology installed at Concord Valley Sports executive offices earlier this week.

In the third period, the Leafs and Flyers trade goals faster than Allied Irish Banks trades junk bonds.

Each team has invested so much energy this season and neither is ready to quit. They’re both hungry, and as you know, “Is maith an t-anlann an t-ocras.”

With 2:20 on the clock, Marshall McLean scores. 6–6.

Forty seconds later, Leaf fan favorite, the fleet-footed Martin O’Schedlbauer crosses the Flyer’s blue line with the puck. Moore steps up to intercept him. M.O., who has scored only four goals this season but nonetheless has endeared himself with fans with his leprechaun-like charm, eludes his lean and lanky opponent. M.O. strides to the high slot. He shoots…he hits the post!

Leafs Nation is desperate for a hero.

Jeremy Doyle, a seamróg stuck to the back of his Cooper helmet, rushes down the left wing. He crosses the blue line, the emerald talisman glinting.

Brendan Doyle, who coached his little brother back in the day in Newburyport’s Little Ireland, now watches Jeremy reach the circle to Weiss’s right.

1:05 on the clock.

The lad winds up for a slap shot. He shoots…he scores! Fans from Dublin to Dorchester are downright delirious!

In the donut room, the new hero of Leafs Nation and Little Ireland forages for a Glazed Munchkin (they’re magically delicious). Before this morning, Jeremy Doyle had scored only four goals, but now he says he’s been saving up all season for a goal like this morning’s game-winner.

"An rud is annamh is íontach.” "What is seldom is wonderful."






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