TRENTON - Two goals from Lucas Rushton paced the Pictou County Scotians to a 4-3 win over the Brookfield Elks on Sunday.
Will Kelly and Colin Holmes also collected goals for Pictou County, who built a 4-1 lead heading into the third period before the Elks launched a comeback attempt that would fall short.
“We let them back in it,” said Scotians captain Ryan Dunfield, who played his first Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League game since suffering a concussion on Nov. 19.
“We kind of let go of the reins a little bit, I think. That was our issue and it became their success.”
It was the first game of the 2018 calendar year for Pictou County, who had a scheduled contest last Friday in Port Hawkesbury postponed.
“It was a good game to get away from the rust,” said Dunfield, a 21-year-old business student at St. Francis Xavier University, who is originally from Sussex, N.B.
A puck-moving defenceman who plays major minutes for his team, Dunfield earned an assist on Kelly’s goal as he tried to ease himself back into game action, getting re-accustomed to having to make quick decisions in the heat of battle.
“It was pretty good to be back in the dressing room and see all the guys again. It was good to get that first one over with,” Dunfield said, adding that he was a little nervous prior to the drop of the puck, as he got set for his first physical contact, seven weeks after the concussion.
“That’s pretty normal and I think everyone would feel the same way, but once you’re in the game and playing to win, those thoughts are gone.”
The Elks have won just two games this season, while the Scotians improved to 15-5-4 and are in second spot in the Sid Rowe Division, six points behind the Glace Bay Miners. They play in Glace Bay on Friday night and will be home to the Cole Harbour Colts next Sunday.