Char-Lan Jr. ‘B’ Rebels season ends with 4-game sweep
BY SEAN BRAY Sports Editor And that’s all she wrote for the Char-Lan junior ‘B’ Rebels, as the boys have been forced to hang up their skates.
Their CCHL2 season came to an end last week, at the hands of the league’s top club, the Ottawa Jr. Canadians, who ousted the Rebels in the Martin Division semifinals, in a four-game sweep.
Despite that, the 2018-19 campaign was a decidedly positive one for the Char-Lan club, notes head coach Jeff Carter.
After finishing the season a year ago in sixth place, of eight teams in their division, and missing the playoffs, this year’s Rebs qualified for post-season action, advancing through the wildcard round with a twogames-to-one win over the Alexandria Glens, before meeting the Canadians.
Carter, noting significant improvement yearover-year in his club, says his team is very young, averaging 17.5 years of age.
In fact, just two players are aging out, as Cornwall’s Brennan Markell and Alexandria’s Dylan Seguin complete their junior hockey careers.
On Markell, who led the Rebels in scoring in both the regular season (67 points) and playoffs (10 points), Char-Lan’s coach says he’s a leader and his MVP.
Markell “goes every night” regardless of the opponent. “Without him, we wouldn’t have gotten as far as we did.”
Seguin, a defensive stalwart, was always “steady on the blue line,” notes Carter, adding that the veteran D-man was great in the dressing room with the younger players.
Young defenceman Dillon Spinner took to Twitter to acknowledge his graduating teammates, posting, “Learned so much from these guys in my first year of jrs [sic], couldn’t have asked for any better teammates than these two. Thanks boys!”
While Char-Lan got off to a strong start last fall, the team hit a lull mid-season and down the stretch, hampered by injuries and a lack of veteran depth. In fact, Carter notes the team was missing two top forwards during much of the playoffs.
Youth was particularly evident on defence, which included Bainsville 16-year-old Brendon Watson, who skated in five of Char-Lan’s seven playoff contests, as well as fellow rookies Shane Gaudreau and Owen Carter.
The youthful roster, though, is just what gives the coach optimism for next season, hoping for a strong start and a long playoff
YOUNG HORSE: Call-up blueliner Brendon Watson chugs into the attacking zone, chased by Ottawa’s Mike Hall.
STELLAR STOPPER: Williamstown’s Grant Craig played the bulk of the playoff minutes, 372 in total between the two series, for Char-Lan, recording a 4.04 goals against average, a 0.888 save percentage, and two shut-out wins.