Capitals: Traverse City tournament, Game 1 vs. Blues

By Seth Keggins

The Washington Capitals prospects took the ice yesterday afternoon, in what was the first of several games in the Traverse City Centre Ice Prospects Tournament. The team met on a parking lot at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport early in the morning, before leaving for Traverse City, Michigan. Little did they know they would beat a team, that on paper may have been more talented.

The St. Louis Blues prospects, led by College standout Peter Sejna and the speedy Alexandre Bolduc were defeated yesterday 3-2 by the Washington prospects in what was a back and forth battle.

The first period began with the Blues coming on strong, having the lead in the shots 11 to 3 at one point. However, the Caps took the early lead as St. Louis could not clear the zone. Caps defender Danny Syvret fired a shot toward a screened Blues goaltender and went in. The period ended in the Caps favor, and with them on the power play.

In the second, the Blues did not need long to cash in as Alexander Bolduc took a feed from Pierre-Luc Courchesne. The score was 1 to 1. Later in that same period, both teams began to buzz, throwing weight around and missing opportunities around the net. However at 11:49 of the second period, captain and defender Steve Eminger drew the awe of the Blues defenders with his flawless and creative stick handling. He then back handed a pass to the center of the ice, where Jevon Desautels stood alone; Caps 2 St. Louis 1.

Chaz Johnson of the St. Louis Blues tied the score once again in the third period, but the Capitals were not going to stand down and not lose to their rival from last season (previous four time Center Ice Tournament Champion from 1997-2001). The Capitals had awakened, finally taking the lead on shots when newly signed Capitals prospect Alexander Semin ripped a back hander over Blues goalie Beckford-Tseu.

With the goalie pulled for the extra attacker and less than a minute remaining, Alexander Semin stole a Blues pass and steamed down the wing before being taken down. This put the Capitals on the power play once again topping off a 3-2 victory, remaining undefeated dating back to last season’s tourney.

The Capitals next game is tonight at 7 p.m., versus the Minnesota Wild prospects.

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