What is it with ECHL Referee Stephen Reneau and playoff overtime? After working the longest game in ECHL history last season, Reneau is once again tacking on the extra mileage.
He suited up alongside referee Pierre Lambert for Games 6 and 7 between the South Carolina Stingrays and the Toledo Walleye. Both went to overtime. Game 6 was settled a reasonable 4:30 into the extra session. Game 7, though, took quite a bit longer. It wasn’t until the 5:35 mark of the third overtime that South Carolina’s Joe Devin finally broke through with the only goal of the game.
(Check out the great non-call by linesman Patrick Richardson right before the game-winner…)
While Reneau’s seen his share of extra hockey, he trails referee Fred Leblanc in total overtime minutes worked this postseason. Leblanc has handled five overtime games, including the longest game of the playoffs – Game 3 between the Stingrays and Florida Everblades which clocked in at 105:38, three seconds longer than Game 7 between South Carolina and Toledo. Leblanc has seen a total of 68:49 of overtime, over half-a-period more than Reneau’s 56:14.
Don’t think the referees are the ones doing all the work, though. Linesmen Francois Dussureault (87:13), Patrick Richardson (86:26), Shaun Morgan (79:01), and Ryan Daisy (77:26) have piled up even more minutes in the extra sessions.
Great job by the hardest working men in hockey — the officials. Somebody get these guys a raise!
Not that their work is done, of course. The Kelly Cup Finals get underway on Sunday, May 31 between the Allen Americans and the South Carolina Stingrays.