HALIFAX – Thursday night the Weeks Major Midgets were eliminated from the NSMMHL playoffs in Game 5 of their best-of-seven series against the Halifax Titans, losing 4-2.
Cody Johnston led the team with two goals, while Ryan Camp picked up two assists. Lane Cormier and Michael Stuart added single assists.
Jack Patterson scored a pair of goals for the Titans, with Brett McNeil and Ethan Marsh adding single tallies.
Prior to Game 5 Pictou County was missing Mark Vokey (suspension) and Cole Livingstone (suspension). In the first period Cormier left the ice for the game, in a similar situation to Vokey and Livingstone.
“I don’t think any of the three suspensions we got to our top three players were penalties; they may have been penalties, but they definitely weren’t majors,” said Weeks Major Midgets’ head coach Dave MacIntyre. “I thought the refereeing in the first series was definitely below average and I don’t mind saying that because it was below average. It’s too bad that officiating gets involved in dictating the outcomes of a game with 15- to 17-year-old kids.”
MacIntyre went on to say that he wasn’t blaming officiating for their losses and that the team had a number of opportunities to win games throughout the series.
“Having said that, I’m very proud of the boys for losing one game in overtime and Thursday night’s game was very close, 2-2 with roughly six minutes left in the third and then they scored,” he said. “We had every opportunity to come back and tie and potentially win that game from the get go even without Cormier, but when you lose your three top players, the other guys really had to pull on the rope a lot harder and they picked their game up and I was extremely proud.”
Although the coaching staff and team wish there was another game to be played and the season was continuing, the staff are pleased with the team’s progression over the season. MacIntyre said the team is far from where they were at the beginning of the season and that they demonstrated that when they work hard they can compete with any of the teams in the league.
“I think it was maturity, confidence (that led to the team stepping up) and from the first of the year to the end of the year it went 180 degrees to a completely different team,” he said. “They had that never say die attitude and that blue collar effort that we were striving for all year, especially the last month and a half of the season and right into the playoffs. To play as well as we did against the second place team in the league is a kudos to how hard they worked, bought into the system and how much they developed over the year.”
“For this series with how shorthanded we were especially in the last couple of games and how the guys all came together truly as a team I can’t say enough because we weren’t supposed to beat them, but we took them to overtime and won one, so I think it shows a lot for what hard work and believing in yourself can do.”
On Twitter: @NGNewsChris