Mason Vaccari Wins Hockey Canada's Capital City Challenge
Mason and Team Black entered the final game as the favourite to win the tournament against Team Red. Team Black had a perfect record of 4-0 and they were the most consistent team in each of their preliminary round matchups.
In the final, Mason's team jumped out to an early 2-0 lead over Quinton Burns and Team Red. The 2 goal lead didn't last long as Team Red answered back with 2 quick goals to tie the game after 20 minutes of play.
Both teams traded goals in the second frame, which was more of a defensive period. The game reminded tied at 3-3 until late in the third period. That's when things got interesting.
With only 29 seconds to play in the third period, Team Red was able to beat Mason Vaccari to take the 4-3 lead. It looked like Quinton Burns and his team were going to complete the upset and capture the Capital City Challenge championship. With the net pulled, 2.9 seconds on the clock and an offensive zone faceoff, Team Black pulled off the unthinkable. After a won faceoff by Team Black was thrown towards Team Red's net, Zach Benson jumped on the puck and beat Jackson Unger with 0.4 seconds to play to tie the game at 4-4. The goal forced the game into a sudden death, 3-on-3 overtime.
To start the extra frame, Mason Vaccari made a spectacular save that would have sealed the championship for Team Red. Moments later, Team Black's Calum Ritchie scored to send his team into a championship frenzy. Mason finished the game making 30 saves, with a save percentage of 0.882. Vaccari earned his third win, which lead the tournament.
Quinton was a late add to the tournament, but he made the most of his opportunity. He play well defensively all tournament long for Team Red (3-2) and he was able to add an assist from the backend during his 5 games played. Quinton and Team Red finished the Capital City Challenge in second place.
Matthew and Team White (2-3) proved that they could score in the tournament, but unfortunately they fell on the wrong side of the scoresheet when the final whistles sounded. Team White was able to end their tournament high note, defeating the Canadian National Women's Team to claim 3rd place in the Capital City Challenge. Soto score a goal and added an assist in the game. In five games played, Soto registered 5 points (2G, 3A), which placed him 10th in tournament scoring.
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