ANTIGONISH, N.S. - Antigonish Rural League playoff action starts tomorrow night (Saturday, Feb. 16) after a regular season which saw the Heatherton Warriors bounced back from a rough 2017-18 season to finish first in 2018-19 regular season play.
The Warriors amassed 35 points with an 11-7 - two overtime (OT) losses – record and will meet the County Outlaws who finished fourth with 13 points with a 4-14 record (one OT win, two OT losses).
The other series will see second place Pleasantdale Panthers face-off against the St. Croix Angels. The Panthers, like the Warriors, posted an 11-7 record but two of their wins came in OT as well as two of their losses, which meant they finished with 33 points.
St. Croix was the OT ‘kings’ of regular season play, with five extra-frame wins versus two losses. The Angels overall record was 10-8 for 27 points.
Game one tomorrow at the Antigonish Arena features the Warriors and Outlaws and gets underway at 7 p.m.
Game two between the Panthers and Angels has an 8:30 p.m. puck-drop.
Both series resume the following Saturday (Feb. 23) but in reverse order; Pleasantdale/St. Croix the early game and Heatherton/County the later contest.
The Panthers’ Travis King notched a hat-trick in his team’s regular season ending game, a 5-2 over Heatherton, which gave him the point scoring title for 2018-19 with 28 points (15 goals, 13 assists) in 17 games.
He edged out teammate Brandon Verge, a perennial scoring star in the league, by one point, as Verge racked up 27 points in 13 games on 15 goals and 12 assists.
Verge had a couple of assists in the win over the Warriors, as did last year’s scoring champ, Garrett Lambke, with Dave MacPherson and Brett Murphy scoring the other Pleasantdale goals.
James Briand and Colin Chisholm answered for Heatherton.
In the other regular season finale, St. Croix blasted County 10-1, led by Patrik MacIsaac’s hat-trick and Cory Bennett’s five-point night with two goals and three assists.
Huntley Richards had four points for the Angels with two goals and two assists while Ryan MacDonnell added two goals and an assist, Huntley Brophy one goal and three assists, and Ben Broussard and Josh Avery each with two assists.
Mark Kennedy scored the Outlaws lone goal.