Jr B Northmen clear first playoff hurdle

July 8, 2015   ·   0 Comments

The Junior B Northmen ended their quarter- final playoff series against the Guelph Regals with a 9-6 win in game three at the Alder Street arena on Thursday (July 2) night.

The Northmen came to the series after winning the Mid West division of the OJBLL with a 16-3-1 record and 33 points – fourth over all in the League.

Game one of the quarter-fi nal got underway on June 27, with the Orangeville squad taking a commanding 17-8 win to start the series. Going back to Guelph for game two, the Northmen went ahead 2-0 with a 13-6 win.

The return to Orangeville for game three saw a tough battle with the Regals playing hard to keep the series alive. The Northmen were leading 4-1 at the end of the first frame but a determined Guelph squad battled back in the second to close the gap with three goals and make it a 5-4 game to set up the third period for a 20 minute showdown.

“In a short series like this – three out of five – you don’t have a whole lot of room for errors. The intensity obviously ramps up – you’re playing for keeps now.”

The final period saw the O-ville squad take the game and outscore the visitors 4-2 to win the series in three straight.

“The first two games of the series were probably our two most complete games of the year,” Said Northmen coach Bruce Codd. “We averaged under ten goals all year  long and the first two games we averaged 15. Down the stretch we kind of knew where we were going to finish, I’d like to think that part of that was the playoffs were here and the guys were excited about it. In a short series like this – three out of five – you don’t have a whole lot of room for errors. The intensity obviously ramps up – you’re playing for keeps now. If you don’t bring it this time of year, you’re usually on the outside looking in.”

The fact that the Northmen blew game one wide open left the Guelph team rattled and from there, the O-ville squad just needed to keep up the pressure to win the series.

“In the first game we had a bit of a slow start,” Codd said. “We were down 3-1 in the first period. We had an unbelievable second period were we had 11 straight goals and had a commanding lead going into the third and matched them goal for goal in the third. I thought we were very good in the second and third period and obviously it’s important to take care of your home floor and we did that in game one.”

In Thursday’s game it was a closer battle with the game coming down to the third period. Codd said he told the team, “You can work hard here for 20 minutes tonight and get the win or you can go down there for 60 tomorrow. Lets try to bear down tonight, because if we don’t, obviously they have some momentum going back their arena and anything can happen.”

The third period saw the Northmen outscore Guelph 4-2 to hold on for the win and end the series. The Northmen will now move on to the semi-final round and will be facing the Niagara Thunderhawks in that series.

The Thunderhawks won their quarter-final series in four games over the St. Catharines Spartans.

Readers Comments (0)

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.