Thursday, Feb 22nd, 2018

Home-and-home

Posted on February 2, 2018 Corey LeBlanc, [email protected]


Patrik MacIsaac of the Antigonish Farmers’ Mutual Junior Bulldogs tries to avoid an open-ice hit from Olan Spears of the Strait Pirates during Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League action, Jan. 14, at the Antigonish Arena. The rivals will clash twice this weekend. Corey LeBlanc

Perennial rivals will clash this weekend – twice – in late regular season Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League (NSJHL) action.
The Strait Pirates will host the Antigonish Farmers’ Mutual Junior Bulldogs Friday (Feb. 2) at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre, while the re-match will take place Sunday (Feb. 4) at the Antigonish Arena.
Puck drop for both games is 7:30 p.m.
“They got off to a great start,” Bulldog head coach David Synishin said of the last game between the teams, Jan. 14, a 10-8 come-from-behind victory for Antigonish.
He added the Pirates used their speed, particularly early, to cause trouble for the Bulldogs in their defensive zone.
“They certainly set us back a little bit,” Synishin said.
In that win, the Bulldogs rallied from a four-goal deficit.

OT win
Josh Cunningham scored the overtime clincher in a 5-4 win for the Bulldogs over the defending league champion Pictou County Scotians, Jan. 21, in Trenton.
The Bulldogs jumped to a 3-1 lead after the first period, on goals from Connor Fraser, Jacob Tompkins (unassisted) and Giordano Saputo.
Blair Fraser, Devin MacLaughlin and Brian MacDougall recorded assists.
After a scoreless second, the Scotians tallied three unanswered goals to take a 4-3 edge midway through the third period.
With less than five minutes remaining in regulation, Andrew Boyle knotted the contest, on assists from Blair Fraser and Jacob Nobbe.
In the extra session, Logan DeYoung and Dylan MacLean were the table setters for Cunningham’s heroics.
Charles Jensen made 43 stops in the win.
In recent action, the Bulldogs welcomed the Kameron Miners (Jan. 26) and Cumberland County Blues (Jan. 30).
Results were unavailable at press time.

Warner scores
Avery Warner, unassisted, scored the lone goal for the Pirates in a 7-1 home loss, Jan. 19, to the Sid Rowe Division leading Miners at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre.
In a 3-2 overtime loss to the Liverpool Privateers, Jan. 23, Olan Spears and Josh Foster tallied for the Strait.
The Pirates hosted the Blues (26th) and Scotians (29th) in recent league play.
Results were unavailable at press time.

Playoff picture
As for the NSJHL playoff picture, unless there is dramatic jockeying for position, the Bulldogs and Pirates will finish third and fourth, respectively, in the Sid Rowe Division.
In the opening round of the playoffs, the Bulldogs will face the second-place Scotians, while the Pirates will battle the Miners.
Synishin said the Scotians pose similar challenges as the Pirates.
“They have great speed,” he added, describing their forwards as “intelligent players.”
Although Pictou County has a “good” defense corps, Synishin said the Bulldogs think they can “exploit” it and pressure them.
“Like we have all season, when we have been successful – we need to continue to stick with our structure and outwork our opponents,” he added.
Synishin said they must continue “to wear teams down.”
He also noted the Bulldogs’ ability to roll four lines and six defenceman will be crucial to any playoff success.

Article Comments

You must be logged in to view and leave comments: