The Manulife Macau Aces continue to roll, as they remain undefeated with a 6-4 victory against the Scotiabank South China Sharks. Aces players’ Marcus Taeck, Jeff Ceccacci, Yannick Wong, and Stefan Northman each had multi-point nights. Meanwhile, Bradley Holman, Jordan So, and Jamie Stark each had multi-point nights for the Sharks.
The Sharks got off to a fast start when Jordan So fired a shot on Aces goaltender Emerson Keung. So generated a rebound that kicked out to the high slot where Holman found the puck on his stick. Holman lifted it over Keung’s outstretched glove to give the Sharks the 1-0 advantage 57 seconds into the game. Minutes later, Holman would get another great scoring chance on a breakaway, but was turned away by Keung.
The Aces scoring started at the 8:48 mark when Whitney Olsen centered a pass from the left boards to Marcus Taeck who made no mistake and found the back of the net. Just over three minutes later, Ryan Wong put home a rebound that Jeff Ceccacci and Taeck were able to generate with their quick passes to put the Aces on top 2-1. Holman netted his second goal of the game when he stripped the puck from Olsen and cruised into the Aces zone. The Sharks would get a flurry of shots before Holman was able to fire home a rebound to even the score at 2-2. Jamie Stark and So picked up assists on the play. However, it would be the Aces that would get the final goal of the period. At 2:08, Yannick Wong went d-to-d with Ceccacci and made an outlet pass to Taeck who flew down the right side of the ice. Taeck made a strong deke to the forehand and slid the puck past the Sharks goalie Dean Tzembelikos. The period would end 3-2 in favor of the Aces.
The second period was an extremely tight battle that saw zero goals and five penalties. At 12:19, Matthew Lee and Stark were called for coincidental roughing penalties. Magnus Berglind would later hook a Sharks player to put his team down a man. Later in the frame, Christopher Belisle and Stark would get called for interference and hooking to put the Aces on a brief 5-on-3 power play. Strong play from Keung and Tzembelikos kept the score at 3-2 heading into the third period.
At 10:54 in the third period, Yannick Wong reopened the scoring when Stefan Northman set him up with a breakaway pass to beat the Sharks goaltender and give the Aces a two-goal lead. Jeff Griffin of the Sharks got called for an interference penalty with just over five minutes to play. Down a man, things were not looking good for the Sharks. However, captain Stark collected a pass from So and made a beautiful individual effort to rocket a shot on net before firing his own rebound past Keung to cut the deficit to one. Nearly 45 seconds later, So and Stark would set up Blake Steele who would net the Sharks second goal of the penalty kill. Steele’s goal tied things up at 4-4.
Keung made 32 saves on 36 shots to get the win. Meanwhile, Tzembelikos made 24 saves on 29 shots in the loss. The Aces resume play when they take on the streaking AsiaXPAT Kowloon Warriors on November 3rd at 8:30pm. The Sharks look to bounce back against the struggling Quam Hong Kong Tycoons on November 3rd at 10:00pm.