capture Minor Midget AA championship
By Fred Sherwin
Gloucester Rangers pose for a picture with the championship trophy after
downing the Rideau St. Lawrence Kings 5-1 on Saturday to win the OEMHL Minor
Midget AA title. Fred Sherwin/Photo
Rangers are the OEMHL Minor Midget AA champions after downing the Rideau
St. Lawrence Kings 5-1 on Saturday to capture their first to seven points
final series eight points to four.
The third seeded
Rangers put themselves in a position to win the title after skating to a
2-0 win over the Kings in Prescott on Thursday. Needing a win to clinch
the championship, the Rangers came out flying own home ice Saturday and
completely dominated the first five minutes of play with the Kings barely
getting out of their own end.
the lopsided play on the ice failed to reflect itself on the score sheet
as Kings goalie Dallas Slack made several key saves to keep his team in
the game including an act of highway robbery on Scott Mcllroy who had rattled
a shot off the post earlier in the period.
The Rangers finally
got on the scoreboard with 1:22 left to go in the opening stanza when Matthew
Shaheen beat Slack five hole on a backhand shot.
The Kings responded
with under a minute to play in the period when Brett Costello intercepted
a pass at the blueline and then outmuscled the defenceman on the play to
break in on Rangers' goalie Philip Eberley before using his long reach to
wedge the puck between the far post and Eberley's outstretched leg.
Rangers dominated the balance of play in the first period, the Kings were
fortunate to escape with the score tied 1-1.
The tie held
up for all of one minute and 27 seconds in the second stanza before the
Rangers scored the go ahead goal on the power play thanks to Ryan Nugent
who banged in a pass from Cameron Bakker from the side of the net.
a great toe save off a shot from Matt Jarvis a little over a minute later
to keep the Rangers in front. Then with 6:08 left in the period McIlroy
made up for his earlier missed opportunity by banging home a rebound after
Slack failed to gather in a shot from Shaheen.
Less than two
minutes later, Bakker intercepted a clearing attempt in the Kings' end and
then fired a wrist shot that beat Slack stick side to put the Rangers up
4-1. From there the game degenerated into a head-hunting exhibition as the
Kings ignored the score in favour of taking repeated runs at the Rangers.
The final period
took nearly 40 minutes to play before the referee finally called the game
with 2:13 left on the clock. In the end, the Rangers outshot the Kings 47-22.
coach Paul Eberley, credited the team's success to their work ethic both
during the games and at practice.
were committed to winning the championship from the get go. They sacrificed
a lot. In fact, no one went away for the March break. They all decided to
stay home and practice so they'd be ready once the finals resumed on Thursday,"
said Eberley who coached the Minor Midget Rangers to the AA championship
The Rangers finished
the regular season with a record of 16-8-8 which was good enough for third
place. They knocked off the sixth seed Kanata Blazers in four games in the
quarterfinals, including a pair of ties, before dispatching the second seed
Nepean Raiders in just three games in the semi-finals.
the finals with a pair of wins on March 9 and 11 to take a commanding four
points to none lead and then Rideau St. Lawrence fought back to win games
three and four by identical scores of 3-2.
game was on Thursday night when Louis Nadeau and Jamie Quinn both scored
for the Rangers and Eberley posted the goose egg. The Rangers will now compete
in the Tournament of Champions which gets underway next week in Carleton
John McGlade, Rob Somerville, Michael Keenan, Jamie Quinn, Jesse Brown,
Scott McIlroy, Simon Berthelotte, Ryan Nugent, Tayler Widenmaier, Cameron
Bakker, Jake Rupert, Elias Ghantous, Kevin Fraser, Louis Nadeau and Matthew
Shaheen. Head Coach Paul Eberley, Ass't Coach Chris Fraser, Manager Brian
Nugent and Trainer Jamie Rupert.
a.m., March 29)
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