Weeks Midgets bounce back in playoff series with Newbridge

Christopher Cameron
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NEW GLASGOW – The reason for tying up their series was the player’s heart and character, according to head coach Dave MacIntyre.

Newbridge Gladiators defenceman Noah McMullan gets chased by Weeks Major Midgets forwards Noah Archibald and Nathaniel Leger during Sunday’s NSMMHL action at the Pictou County Wellness Centre. Weeks won Sunday’s game 6-5 to tie their playoff series 2-2. 

After falling behind 2-0 in their NSMMHL playoff series with Newbridge the Weeks Major Midgets won two straight at home over the weekend to tie the series 2-2 and make it a best-of-three to advance.

“We just needed to work harder because we kind of gave those first two games away,” said Weeks forward Nathaniel Leger. “We went in a little confident, but played good these two.”

Coming off a 7-1 victory Saturday night, things continued to go Weeks way early in the first yesterday as a Cody Johnston shot from the half-wall went off a Gladiator defenceman’s skate and past Aaron Mantle just 27 seconds into the game.

Matthew Green scored the equalizer 6:30 later, while Chad Bannister added the second Newbridge goal midway through the first to give the Gladiators a 2-1 lead going into the intermission.

In the second Matt Sartoris tied the game 2-2 on the power play with a shot from the point just 3:53 into the frame.

Newbridge answered six minutes later with a goal by Alex MacDonald.

At the 11:19 mark of the second Noah Archibald scored the first of three goals in under three minutes as Weeks tied the game before Luke Spicer took the lead for Newbridge just two minutes later.

Mark Vokey scored his first goal of the game 28 seconds later on the power play, with a shot from the point, to knot the game at 4-4 after two periods.

“The boys just really need to get to our game plan and when we do that we’re good, so that’s all we needed to do (when they scored),” said Leger.

Vokey scored his second of the game just 1:03 into the third period, sliding the puck easily past Mantle for Weeks first lead since the opening period.

Luke Green tied the game 5-5 at the 9:07 mark, but Vokey would get his third of the game on a 5-on-3 power play with 7:50 left in the game.

Weeks held on for a 6-5 victory, even after a barrage of shots by the Gladiators as the game came to a close.

Luke Melanson made 32 saves for the win, while Mantle’s 36-save performance was tagged with a loss.

“Everyone in the room is laying it on the line for each other because it’s a team that’s doing it, not just individuals,” said Leger on the team’s effort throughout the third in their second straight win.

Game 5 of the best-of-seven series is Wednesday night at the Dartmouth Sportsplex before Saturday’s Game 6 at the Trenton Arena at 7:30 p.m.

This week the team just needs to continue to bring the effort according to Leger. He said the showed this weekend that they could win games if the effort was there.

“It feels really good to get the two at home and we’re going to go down there and get the third one.”

 

christopher.cameron@ngnews.ca

On Twitter: @NGNewsChris

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