The Niagara-Wheatfield Falcons streaking as playoffs begin this week
As of press time, the Falcons will be no worse than the three seed when the playoffs begin. Not bad considering they started the season kind of rough.
But, since a 6-0 loss to St. Joe’s back on Jan. 14, the Falcons have been on a role – having gone unbeaten in their last five games.
““First time we played them (St. Joe’s) I think we were a little unsure of ourselves,” stated Niagara-Wheatfield coach Rich Wrazin. “Since that first game we have been on a nice run – and that was our last lost. We have beaten some good teams and they know what it takes to win.”
Leading the way for the Falcons is goaltender Alex Krammerer. Krammerer has been one of the best players on the ice, and that was none more evident than his 26 save performance against St. Joe’s last Saturday – a 2-1 win for Niagara-Wheatfield.
““He has been solid the second half of the year,” stated Wrazin. “He has been good for us all year, but the second half he hasn’t given up much.”
The Falcons only need for Krammerer to make the routine saves as they are the highest scoring team in the WNY Federation.
Even with Niagara-Wheatfield putting the puck in the net at a record pace, it’s still good to have close games against teams like St. Joe’s as the playoffs come into focus.
“We are the highest scoring team in the lead, so we know we can put pucks in the net as well,” stated Wrazin. “For us it was a great game (their win over St. Joe’s) to get ready for the playoffs, because we have to do the little things well to score the ugly goals.”
With the Falcons on such a roll, one would think it might help them if they lost a game before the playoffs to ground this team again.
Wrazin, however, thinks differently.
He wants his team to have as much confidence as possible once the puck drops for real next week.
“I think it’s important o go in on the up slide,” explained Wrazin. “Get rolling when they playoffs come and now we are playing our best hockey and that will give us the best chance to win.”
Follow Metro reporter Charles Roberts and Metro Associate Editor Matthew Ondesko as they will be reporting from the WNY Federation playoffs starting Thursday, Feb. 16.
Game stories will be posted daily on metrowny.com.