Titan men fall short in St. Stephen tourney
Sackville crew will defend AA title this spring
The Tantramar Titans may be the smallest boys team in high school hockey this year, but they are showing a feistiness and are starting to find their stride.
This past week the Titans played six games – one regular season contest and five at the annual St. Stephen tournament.
Last Monday, the Titans dropped a 4-2 decision to the Rothesay Redhawks. Big and fast with a mean streak, the Redhawks controlled much of the play, however, the Titan defence held their own, keeping secondary chances to a minimum and being quick moving the puck up to wingers.
Jacob Estabrooks and Justin Vogels supplied the scoring with assists awarded to Brady Senior and Jessie Estabrooks. Sam Tower was tagged with the loss between the pipes but was solid, facing 50-plus shots.
On Friday, the bus was loaded up again for the annual November trek to St. Stephen.
In their opening game, the Titans came out flat and lost 2-1 to Southern Vic. Seth Smith, scored the lone Tantramar goal, assisted by Jessie Estabrooks. Noah Boyd was rock solid and picked up player of the game honours.
On Saturday, the Titans overcame a 2-0 deficit and earned a 3-2 win over the Saint John Greyhounds. Smith opened the scoring in the second period and player of the game Riley Estabrooks scored the tying goal and game winner. Assists went to Vogels, Senior, Oliver Longpre and Jacob Estabrooks. Tower picked up the win in goal.
Ecole St. Anne was on the menu for Game 3 and the Titans continued their strong play and toppled the Castors 4-2. Vogels continued to hit the scoresheet with two goals and an assist, Jacob Estabrooks scored once and added a helper and Riley Estabrooks netted a single marker. Smith and Connor Cadman also had assists. Vogels was awarded player of the game, and Boyd looked great in getting the win.
In their final round- robin game, the Titans edged St. Stephen in front of a large crowd in what was the most entertaining game of the tournament. Both teams generated many scoring opportunities and threw big hits throughout the contest.
The game was tied 1-1 after the first period. The Titans went ahead 3-1 after two and hung on for victory. Vogels notched a pair and Riley Estabrooks sniped the winner. Jacob Estabrooks set up two goals and Smith also had an assist.
The win gave the Titans a berth in the final for the fourth straight year. On the other half of the ice for the warmup was the very familiar two-tone blue and white jerseys of the Carlton North Stars. For the past three years these teams have been the cream of the crop in the provincial AA standings. It was also the second time in three years they met in the final in St. Stephen, and most recently, CNHS was the opponent in last year’s provincial final that the Titans captured.
CNHS played a defensively structured game and kept the Titans at bay throughout, limiting chances and creating their own opportunities with a quick transition. The teams were scoreless after one period, before the North Stars broke through in the second with a controversial goal that Tower appeared to have stopped with his glove.
CNHS added a second goal with less than two minutes left in the game and sealed it with an empty netter for a 3-0 final.
It was a great weekend for the Titans, who gained valuable experience in their quest to defend their AA title in the spring.