By Victor Fernandes Erie Times-News staff blogger
Staff writer Victor Fernandes has ice in his veins. Hockey – he plays it, coaches it and provides the region's best coverage of it.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1716
Posts tagged ‘peter sidorkiewicz’
Posted: March 22nd, 2013

Peter Sidorkiewicz survived three head coaching changes with the Erie Otters, including his own.
But after 14 seasons, his tenure with the OHL club is over. Sherry Bassin, Otters managing partner and general manager, has chosen not to renew Sidorkiewicz’s contract, which expires at the end of this season, because “they’re looking at going in another direction,” Sidorkiewicz said Friday.
Sidorkiewicz, 49, joined the Otters in 1999 to serve as assistant and goaltending coach under then-coach Dave MacQueen. He replaced MacQueen as coach before the 2006-07 season, but was demoted to assistant under coach Robbie Ftorek after posting an 18-62-1-2 record during one-plus seasons.
Sidorkiewicz, a former NHL goaltender, again chose to remain on staff after Kris Knoblauch was hired to replace Ftorek this past November.
Yet Sidorkiewicz said, “I’m not part of the plan” for the 2013-14 season. “I think they want to get a couple of younger coaches.
Dave Brown, Otters assistant manager of hockey operations, said the staff likely will include two full-time assistants and a part-time goaltending coach, although club officials wouldn’t rule out hiring one of the new assistants to also work with the goaltenders.
Bassin declined to comment on if Sidorkiewicz’s performance factored into the decision. The Otters topped 300 goals allowed – 650 in all – the past two seasons, and their goaltenders – Ramis Sadikov and Devin Williams in 2011-12, as well as Oscar Dansk and Williams this season – struggled mightily.
“I have nothing negative to say about it. We’re looking at different things that could be done,” said Bassin, who added that Knoblauch wants input into the staff. Sidorkiewicz said he worked well with Knoblauch. But with a new coach, Sidorkiewicz said, “you always know (a change is) possible.”
Sidorkiewicz will turn his attention to finding a new job. “It’s like a kick in the gut,” he said of leaving the Otters. “But I have to get off the floor. I have to find a new job.” Bassin said he plans to help Sidorkiewicz find a job at a higher level. “I’m going to do my best to call a lot of people because he would be a wonderful addition to their staff,” Bassin said. “I think the world of him. I’m going to do my best to get him to the next level.”
In other news, the Otters have chosen not to retain Mike Hildenbrand, who spent the past three seasons as equipment manager. Paul Roper, who served as play-by-play broadcaster and media relations manager for the past four seasons, won’t also remain with the club.

- Victor Fernandes

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: October 6th, 2012

Oscar Dansk remains a work in progress, even after his stellar 34-save performance Friday night against Brampton.
“I’m just taking it a day at a time,” the rookie goaltender said before the Erie Otters’ game against London Saturday night at Erie Insurance Arena.
Dansk missed time in the preseason while recovering from a knee injury suffered in the summer while playing for his native Sweden’s national junior team at USA Hockey’s National Junior Evaluation Camp in Lake Placid, N.Y. So Dansk is still working on his timing.
“It’s something I work on every day. You get better and better every day,” said Dansk, who believes he produced a solid overall effort in his first five games of the season. He entered his outing against the Knights with a 2-3-0-0 record, 4.51 goals-against average and .891 save percentage. He surrendered 19 goals on 110 shots in his losses to Niagara, London and Ottawa.
Yet he stopped 81-of-83 shots in wins against Brampton and Peterborough. “It’s up to me to prove myself,” said Dansk, who added that his return to full strength was slowed by “different opinions from different people” regarding his rehabilitation. But he’s ready to play now. And on Saturday, he was ready to face the Knights, who scored seven goals on 39 shots against him in London Sept. 21.
“I’m really pumped,” he said. “We’re looking to rebound.”
Sherry Bassin, Otters managing partner and general manager, isn’t concerned about Dansk’s inconsistent start early this season.
Besides the knee injury and subsequent slow rehabilitation, Bassin said, goaltending coach Peter Sidorkiewicz was unable to work with Dansk and backup Devin Williams on the ice until this past Tuesday. The ongoing renovations at the downtown arena forced the Otters to settle for an abbreviated practice schedule in previous weeks. Yet Ian Clark, the Columbus Blue Jackets’ goaltending coach, is scheduled to arrive in Erie today to work with Dansk, the NHL club’s second-round pick in the draft this past June.
“He’s still not there,” Bassin said of Dansk. “He’s getting there.” Better yet, Bassin said, “the players love playing in front of him.”
* News and notes: Scott Howson, the Blue Jackets’ executive vice president of hockey operations and general manager, attended both games this weekend to watch Dansk play. … The Otters scratched Anthony Cortellessa (flu) and Dane Fox (broken foot). Liam Maaskant, Justin Felker and Mitch Eisenberg were healthy scratches. Maaskant and Eisenberg haven’t dressed for a game this season.

- Victor Fernandes

Posted: February 15th, 2012

Devin Williams did everything but score a goal for the Erie Otters.

But the Otters finally scored – two late goals, actually – to reward Williams for the game of his life.

The rookie goaltender stopped a career-high 61-of-62 shots in Erie’s 2-1 comeback win against the Eastern Conference-leading Niagara IceDogs in front of 2,121 at Tullio Arena Wednesday night.

“What can you say? The kid was amazing,” said Peter Sidorkiewicz, Otters assistant/goaltending coach.

For the game’s first 55 minutes, it appeared the Otters’ struggling offense would spoil one of the best performances in franchise history. The Otters (8-40-3-2) rarely tested former teammate Chris Festarini (16 saves).

“The guys found a way to put one in,” Sidorkiewicz, referring to rookie Connor Brown’s rebound on the power play, which trickled past Festarini to tie the score at 1 with 5 minutes, 55 seconds left in the game.

Then during the Otters’ sixth and final power play of the night, Brown’s pass found rookie Sondre Olden to the right of Festarini. The Otters’ 18th and final shot on goal of the game found the back of the net.

The goal with 43.6 seconds left was all Williams needed to finish off the IceDogs (35-16-0-3).

Williams’ effort also provides club officials with a difficult decision to make. The coaching staff has spoken with Sherry Bassin, managing partner and general manager, about possibly signing Williams to a player card. That would allow him to play with the team full time for the rest of the season.

Williams, a fifth-round pick in the 2011 OHL Priority Selection, has spent more half of the season with the Otters as a floating affiliate. That limits his game total to 10 games until his original team, the Metro Jets from Waterford, Mich., completes their season in the North American Tier III Hockey League.

He has played six games. The Otters have 15 games left in the season. Sidorkiewicz said club officials still want to play overager Ramis Sadikov in games in hopes of helping him earn a professional contract. But Sidorkiewicz said they also would like to play Williams more.

Williams stopped all 21 shots he faced in the first period. He stopped 23-of-24 in the second, with only Freddie Hamilton’s shot from in close slipping through with 5:02 left in the period. Williams turned aside all 17 shots in the third, which gave the Otters the opportunity they needed to rally and snap a four-game losing streak.




Otters 2, IceDogs 1

Niagara  0  1  0  —  1

Erie  0  0  2  —  2

1st Period — None. Penalties — Wigle (N) hooking, :38; Olden (E) slashing, 1:35; McGuire (E) 4-min. checking from behind, 12:33; Beukeboom (N) instigating, 12:33; McGuire (E) 5-min. fighting, 12:33; Beukeboom (N) 5-min. fighting, 12:33; Beukeboom (N) 10-min. misconduct, 12:33; Mercer (N) high sticking,. 15:51.

2nd Period — 1. Niagara, Freddie Hamilton 25 (Strome, D. Hamilton), 14:58 (pp). Penalties — Evans (E) tripping, 4:03; Doan (N) elbowing, 7:01; Maaskant (E) delay of game, 14:45.

3rd Period — 2. Erie, Connor Brown 19 (Fox, Cairns), 14:05 (pp). 3. Erie, Sondre Olden 7 (Brown, Cairns), 19:16 (pp). Penalties — Kuhnhackl (N) slashing, 7:03; Shipley (N) slashing, 12:31; Graham (N) checking from behind, 18:36.

Shots on goal — Niagara, 21-24-17—62; Erie, 5-7-6—18.

Goaltenders — Niagara, Chris Festarini 11-10-0-0 (18 shots, 16 saves); Erie, Devin Williams 2-2-0-1 (62 shots, 61 saves).

Power plays — Niagara (1-4), Erie (2-6).

Referees — T.J. Foster, Craig Spada. Linesmen — R.J. King, Jesse Wilmot.

Attendance — 2,121.


Three stars

* Devin Williams, Otters (career-high 61 saves) ** Sondre Olden, Otters (GW goal) *** Luke Cairns, Otters (2 assists)


Posted: August 2nd, 2011

Erie Otters GM Sherry Bassin also confirmed that the club has agreed to terms on a 2-year contract extension with coach Robbie Ftorek and a new 2-year contract with assistant coach Peter Sidorkiewicz. Ftorek has one year left on his current contract. Bassin expects both to sign their deals in the few days. In other news, the club officially announced the signing of 2011 first-round pick Stephen Harper. Bassin said he has agreed to terms with 2011 second-round pick Jake Evans.


Posted: December 18th, 2010

Greg McKegg (Contributed/Erie Otters)The Erie Otters have finished the first half of the season with a winning record.

Greg McKegg made sure of that.

The Otters captain redirected rookie Adam Pelech’s pass past Sudbury goaltender Alain Valiquette 1 minute, 2 seconds into overtime to seal Erie’s 3-2 win in front of 3,987 at Tullio Arena on Saturday night.

With the victory, the Otters head into the Christmas break with a 17-16-1-1 record.

“We know we can win now,” McKegg said. “We’ve beaten the best teams.”

The Otters controlled play in the opening period. They enjoyed continued stretches in the offensive zone.

But Valiquette stymied the Otters every time. Valiquette stopped all 12 shots he faced in the period.

Meanwhile, Otters goaltender Ramis Sadikov stopped all seven shots in the period.

Sadikov and Valiquette remained in the spotlight during the opening half of the second period.

But a faceoff win late in the period allowed the Wolves (11-20-2-0) to score the game’s first goal. Michael Sgarbossa deflected Ryan Hanes’ shot from the blue line past Sadikov with 7:25 left in the period. Sgarbossa set up the scoring play by winning the faceoff and then crashing the net. He has four goals and five points in three games since being acquired from Saginaw last week in the John McFarland trade.

Otters defenseman David Shields matched Sgarbossa’s goal less than four minutes later. His point shot slipped through Valiquette for Shields’ third goal of the season. McKegg and rookie Macaulay McDonnell assisted on the goal with 4:02 left in the period.

The teams headed into the third still tied at 1 – just like the Otters and Brampton did Friday night.

Unlike Erie’s 2-1 loss to the Battalion, the Otters took a one-goal lead on Derek Holden’s power-play goal 4:07 into the period. Anthony Luciani and Phil Varone assisted on Holden’s third goal of the season.

Yet Sgarbossa’s second goal of the night and 12th goal of the season – a rebound of his own shot in front of Sadikov – tied the score at 2 with 7:18 left. But McKegg’s heroics ended the first half on a high note.

“It’s definitely huge,” Shields said. “We’re coming back hard (in the second half).”

* News and notes: The Otters finish the half tied for fifth in the Western Conference. … Sadikov joins Team Russia on Sunday in Jamestown, N.Y., for an evaluation camp leading into the IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship, which begins Dec. 26 in Buffalo. If Sadikov makes the team, the Otters would be without him for the start of the second half. The Otters return to action Dec. 28 in Plymouth. … Defenseman Brady Austin, who missed Friday’s game, replaced winger Jordan Coccimiglio in the lineup. … Coach Robbie Ftorek’s Hoses team defeated assistant coach Peter Sidorkiewicz’s Guns 9-3 in the inaugural Guns & Hoses Charity Hockey Game at Tullio on Saturday. Team captains John Sorge (Hoses) and Rick Skonieczka (Guns) from the game, which benefited the Children’s Advocacy Center of Erie County, dropped a ceremonial first puck before the Otters’ game.

- Victor Fernandes


Otters 3, Wolves 2 (OT)

Sudbury  0  1  1  0  —  2

Erie  0  1  1  1  —  3

1st Period — None. Penalties — Erie, too many men (served by McDonnell), 3:46; Silk (S) boarding, 3:46; Dodero (S) hooking, 5:38; Marchese (E) unsportsmanlike conduct, 10:59; Silk (S) unsportsmanlike conduct, 10:59; Appio (E) 5-min. fighting, 11:01; Hanes (S) 5-min. fighting, 11:01; Cook (E) interference, 11:25; Sefton (S) slashing, 11:25; McKegg (E) interference, 15:32; Sefton (S) high sticking, 19:31.

2nd Period — 1. Sudbury, Michael Sgarbossa 11 (Hanes, Jambrosich), 12:35. 2. Erie, David Shields 3 (McKegg, McDonnell), 15:58. Penalties — Pelech (E) tripping, 1:58.

3rd Period — 3. Erie, Derek Holden 3 (Luciani, Varone), 4:07 (pp). 4. Sudbury, Sgarbossa 12 (Lomas), 12:42. Penalties — Sgarbossa (S) hooking, 3:55; Sgarbossa (S) high sticking, 7:34; Appio (E) 5-min. fighting, 15:07; Sefton (S) 5-min. fighting, 15:07.

Overtime — 5. Erie, Greg McKegg 25 (Pelech), 1:02. Penalties — None.

Shots on goal — Sudbury, 7-12-4-0—23; Erie, 12-13-1—34.

Goaltenders — Sudbury, Alain Valiquette 11-15-2-0 (34 shots, 31 saves); Erie, Ramis Sadikov 17-12-1-1 (23 shots, 21 saves).

Power plays — Sudbury (0-2), Erie (1-4).

Referees — Bob Langdon, Dave Gauthier. Linesmen — Daryl Wolfe, Jesse Wilmot.

Attendance — 3,987.

Three stars

* Greg McKegg, Otters (GW goal, assist) ** David Shields, Otters (goal) *** Michael Sgarbossa, Wolves (2 goals)

Posted: December 17th, 2010

What: Sudbury Wolves (11-20-1-0) at Erie Otters (16-16-1-1)

When: Saturday, 7 p.m.

Where: Tullio Arena

On the air: WFNN-AM/1330, (live stream)

Players to watch

Erie – C Greg McKegg (24 goals, 27 assists, 51 points), RW Shawn Szydlowski (17-15-32), RW Anthony Luciani (13-17-30), G Ramis Sadikov (16-11-1-1 record, 2.92 goals-against average, .912 save percentage, 2 shutouts), C Phil Varone (12-13-25)

Sudbury – LW Mike Lomas (17-15-32), LW Michael MacDonald (12-15-17), D Josh McFadden (6-20-26), C Michael Sgarbossa (10-14-24), D Frank Corrado (2-14-16)

Fast facts

Erie – The Otters have a 3-3 record in December after posting a 9-3 mark in November. … They look to split the two-game season series after losing to the Wolves 3-1 in Sudbury Oct. 23. … The Otters have nearly identical home (8-8-0-1) and road (8-8-1-0) records. They have dropped their last two home games. … They are third in the OHL on the power play (22.5 percent), two spots ahead of the Wolves (21.4). … The Otters have dropped to 16th on the penalty kill (78.5). … Before the game, coach Robbie Ftorek and assistant Peter Sidorkiewicz will serve as coaches in the inaugural Guns & Hoses Charity Hockey Game. The 4 p.m. game features local police officers facing local firefighters/EMS and paramedics in a game that benefits the Children’s Advocacy Center of Erie County.

Sudbury – The Wolves will play without leading scorer Marcus Foligno (15-18-33), who remains with Team Canada to prepare for the IIHF World Junior Championship, which begins Dec. 26 in Buffalo. … The Wolves traded former No. 1 pick John McFarland and veteran D Ben Chiarot to Saginaw last week for Sgarbossa, LW Alex Racino and D Frank Schumacher. … Sgarbossa has three goals and four points in two games with the Wolves. … The Wolves rank in the league’s bottom five in goals scored (91) and goals against (133). … They enter tonight’s game off a 9-3 loss to Mississauga St. Michael’s.

Up next: at Plymouth (Dec. 28, 2 p.m.), at Saginaw (Dec. 29, 7:11 p.m.)

– Victor Fernandes

Posted: December 12th, 2010

Erie Otters can watch two games for the price of one at Tullio Arena on Saturday.

Before the Otters complete the first half of the season in a 7 p.m. game against Sudbury, local police officers will face local firefighters/EMS and paramedics in the inaugural Guns & Hoses Charity Hockey Game at 4 p.m. Proceeds from the game benefit the Children’s Advocacy Center of Erie County.

Otters coach Robbie Ftorek will coach the Hoses team, which features fire and EMS officials from Erie, Kearsarge, West Lake and West Ridge fire departments and staff from Millcreek Paramedic Service and Emergycare. Otters assistant coach Peter Sidorkiewicz will lead the Guns team, which has officers from Erie, Edinboro, Millcreek and Pennsylvania State Police departments.

Fans can buy $10 tickets covering both games at the Otters’ office by mentioning Guns & Hoses Night.

Posted: December 7th, 2010

Erie Otters fans can watch two games for the price of one at Tullio Arena on Saturday.

Before the Otters complete the first half of the OHL season in a 7 p.m. game against Sudbury, local police officers will face local firefighters and EMS officials in the inaugural Guns & Hoses Charity Hockey Game at 4 p.m.

Otters coach Robbie Ftorek will coach the Hoses team, which features fire and EMS officials from Erie, Kearsarge, West Lake and West Ridge fire departments and staff from Millcreek, Paramedic Service and Emergycare EMS services. Otters assistant coach Peter Sidorkiewicz will lead the Guns team, which has officers from Erie, Edinboro, Millcreek and Pennsylvania State Police departments.

Proceeds from the game benefit the Children’s Advocacy Center of Erie County. Fans can purchase $10 tickets covering both games at the Otters’ office by mentioning Guns & Hoses Night.

Posted: December 1st, 2010

Check out this article in The Oshawa Express on Peter Sidorkiewicz, Erie Otters assistant coach and Oshawa, Ontario, native.

Posted: September 1st, 2010

Robbie Ftorek (Contributed/Erie Otters)

Sherry Bassin wants to keep coach Robbie Ftorek and assistant coach Peter Sidorkiewicz with the Erie Otters in the future.

So Bassin, managing partner and general manager, plans to restructure their contracts, he said Wednesday at Tullio Arena. Bassin either will add to their existing deals or finalize a new contract.

Either way, their new deals will last a minimum of three years apiece. Ftorek has two years left on his current deal. Sidorkiewicz has one year remaining. “They’re good,” Bassin said of Ftorek and Sidorkiewicz. “It’s good for the continuity of the team. It’s good for the new players that are coming in.”

* Camp cuts: Club officials cut 11 prospects on Wednesday to reduce the roster to 40 players.

The list includes five 2010 OHL draft picks – goaltender Hunter Johnson (10th round), defenseman Liam Maaskant (eighth) and forwards Eric Kimmerly (11th round), Brent Hambly (14th round) and Liam Walker (15th round) and a pair of 2009 picks – defensemen Mikhel Poldma (fifth round) and Matt Halloran (14th round). Bassin originally planned to keep Maaskant in camp. But he wasn’t able to practice because of a case of shingles, a painful skin rash triggered by the same virus that causes chicken pox, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“That’s too bad because he deserves to stay longer,” Bassin said of Maaskant.

Harborcreek Township native Billy Wager, a goaltender, and Harbor Creek High School defenseman Hunter Conboy headlined a list of free-agent invites cut that included defenseman Tyler Mayea and forward Jack Pirie.

* Ailing Luciani: Right wing Anthony Luciani had wisdom teeth removed a few days before training camp began. That should keep him from practicing all week. Bassin said Luciani developed a throat infection stemming from the procedure. Club officials also removed Luciani from the team’s cabins at Camp Sherwin in Fairview over concerns that other players could be infected.

“We’ve been very careful with that,” Bassin said. “We’re not upset (that Luciani can’t practice) because we don’t have to evaluate him.” Luciani led the team with 38 goals last season.

In other injury news, goaltender Ramis Sadikov (foot) missed Wednesday’s practice. He was struck with a shot on Tuesday. Center Connor Crisp (groin), a 2010 second-round pick, and free-agent winger Macaulay McDonnell (charley horse) also sat out practice.

Billy Wager (Contributed/Bill Wager)

* Wager chooses NCAA: Wager approached Ftorek after the second scrimmage on Wednesday. Wager informed Ftorek that NCAA hockey is in his future. “I just realized I really want to focus on education,” said Wager, 16, who will play for Plymouth, Mich.-based Victory Honda‘s U16 team this season.

He pointed to the Otters’ annual seminar on Tuesday night, which featured Mercyhurst College men’s coach Rick Gotkin.

“It cleared things up for me,” Wager said.

Wager’s collegiate list includes NCAA Division I Boston University (his favorite), Boston College, Canisius, Denver, Maine, Mercyhurst, Michigan State, Ohio State (his father Bill‘s alma mater) and Wisconsin. He has made unofficial visits to BC, BU and Ohio State. “I’m still trying to find out what school is right for me,” said Wager, who wants to earn degrees in business and film. “I’ve looked at hockey programs. Now it’s time to look at education programs.”

* News and notes: Veteran winger Matthew Paton has added eight pounds of muscle to his 208-pound frame. That will help his physical style of play. But he has still focused on his speed and skill. Without that, he said, “I’m useless.” … John Labatt Centre in London, Ontario, and Sudbury Arena in Sudbury, Ontario, will host the OHL’s two games in the Subway Super Series, which features a six-game series between OHL, QMJHL and WHL all-star teams against a Russian club.

- Victor Fernandes

Switch to our mobile site