Ju­nior ‘B’ hockey play­offs open for Glens, Rebels this week

The Glengarry News - - Sports In The Glens -

BY SEAN BRAY Sports Editor Forty games are in the books for the county’s ju­nior ‘B’ hockey teams, the Char­Lan Rebels and the Alexandria Glens, and now the real work be­gins, as the EOJHL play­off di­vi­sion semi­fi­nal se­ries be­gin.

Alexandria se­cured its post-sea­son berth sev­eral weeks ago and clinched home-ice ad­van­tage too, with the Glens booked to take on the Winch­ester Hawks.

Head-to-head, the squads were rather even this year, both scor­ing three wins. Alexandria’s three losses were in reg­u­la­tion time, while one of the three for Winch­ester came in overtime. The most re­cent meet­ing, on Feb. 13 in Winch­ester, saw the Hawks pre­vail 4-2.

Over­all through the win­ter, the Glens scored fewer goals than the Hawks (179 to 192) against all league op­po­nents, and al­lowed more ( 171 to 164). As well, Alexandria took sig­nif­i­cantly more penal­ties, amass­ing 1,037 min­utes in the sin bin, com­pared to 762 for Winch­ester.

The lat­ter stat should be a con­cern for the Glens, who, in their fi­nal game of the reg­u­lar sea­son last Satur­day night ver­sus the Cas­sel­man Vik­ings, be­came unglued in the sec­ond pe­riod, wear­ing a steady path to the penalty box. Goal­tender Nick Ma­heux was tossed from the con­test with a gross mis­con­duct penalty, pre­sum­ably called when the net­min­der hurled his stick across the ice as he was be­ing es­corted off the play­ing sur­face by a lines­man.

In the afore­men­tioned Feb. 13 game in Winch­ester, the Glens were sanc­tioned with 48 PIM, hand­ing the Hawks seven power plays, of which they con­verted two.

Even head coach Stephan Nadeau drew the ire of the ref­eree, as the bench boss was tossed at the end of the sec­ond pe­riod for “har­rass­ment of an of­fi­cial.” As a re­sult, he was sus­pended for the Cas­sel­man con­test and in­stead watched from the stands.

In Satur­day’s ac­tion, Alexandria took 56 PIM and gave the Vikes seven power-play op­por­tu­ni­ties, in­clud­ing an ex­tended stretch of five-on-three play.

“Is it Wed­nes­day yet?! #Glen­sNa­tion #Play­off­Mode”

Per­haps not sur­pris­ingly, the Glens went win­less on the week­end.

The boys will be look­ing to turn it around start­ing tonight, Feb. 18, on home ice.

Char-Lan the un­der­dog?

The Char-Lan Rebels, mean­while, may have some new con­fi­dence go­ing into the play­offs against top dog Cas­sel­man.

Last Thurs­day in Cas­sel­man, the Rebs scored a 4-1 vic­tory. It was the first time that Char-Lan had beaten the first-place Vik­ings this sea­son. The pre­vi­ous five meet­ings had been won by Cas­sel­man, with a mar­gin of three goals or bet­ter.

It’s worth not­ing that over­all on the sea­son, the Vik­ings were one of the most­pe­nal­ized teams in the di­vi­sion, rack­ing up 1,065 min­utes of in­frac­tions, com­pared to 891 for Char-Lan.

Cas­sel­man scored the most goals in the di­vi­sion (233) and al­lowed the fewest against (105). Con­trast those num­bers with 171 and 176 re­spec­tively for the Rebels.

The Feb. 12 game in Cas­sel­man was a spir­ited af­fair, fea­tur­ing a fight be­tween Juan Diego Her­nan­dez and Kyle Mil­lett, who drew an in­sti­ga­tor penalty. In all, 78 min­utes of in­frac­tions was called in the game.

Bren­nan Markell scored a hat trick, with the other Char-Lan tally net­ted by Matt Gre­goire. Thomas Har­grave had two as­sists.

On Satur­day night to close out the reg­u­lar sea­son, the Rebels bat­tled hard against the Winch­ester Hawks, but in the end fell 9-7. The boys had an early lead on a Jake Mayette tally, but from the 5:53 point on­wards were tied or trailed. Other Char­Lan mark­ers came from Har­grave (2 goals, 2 as­sists), Scott Hope (2), Gre­goire, and Markell.

Head coach Eric Fon­taine de­scribed the match as “quite the game,” where “last shot wins.”

Look­ing ahead to the Cas­sel­man play­off se­ries, which be­gins on the road to­mor­row (Feb. 19) night, Fon­taine says, “We feel con- fi­dent. We know we can beat them [the Vik­ings] now. No one is giv­ing us a chance, but the 20 guys in that room be­lieve we can win, and that’s all that mat­ters. Ob­vi­ously it will be a tough chal­lenge, as they are a great team. We just need to play good team de­fence and cap­i­tal­ize on our chances. We also need to keep [Cas­sel­man’s] chances to a min­i­mum.”

The Vik­ings fin­ished the sea­son with 70 points, while Char-Lan ended with 39.

SEAN BRAY PHOTO

CHARGE: Glens for­ward Gabriel Cuil­lerier drives out of the de­fen­sive zone, chased down by a Cas­sel­man Vik­ing in Feb. 14 ju­nior ‘B’ hockey ac­tion from Alexandria. For more photos, see our online gallery at www.sportsinth­e­glens.ca

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