Port Hope / Essex meet in Schmalz Cup final

April 20, 2017   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

The Port Hope Panthers will meet the Ayr Centennials  in the final championship series for the provincial Junior C Schmalz Cup.

The Alliston Junior C Hornets are done for the season after taking a 6-2 loss in game five of their best of seven semi-final series with the Port Hope Panthers.

The Hornets had a stellar season going 35-5-1 in the regular season and finishing in second place in the Carruthers Division of the North Conference.

The Hornets rose to the challenge in the Division playoffs knocking out the Schomberg Cougars in five games in the first round, then doing the same to the Penetang Kings in the semi-final.

The final series against the Stayner Siskins was a much anticipated match-up between the two top teams. The Siskins ended the regular season as the first place team that lost only three games all season.

In the final series the Hornets were on fire and swept the series in four games.

They outscored the Siskins 22-11 over the four games to win the Division title.

Moving to the provincial round the Alliston squad met the Mount Forest Patriots – champions of the Pollock Division.

The Patriots knocked out the Walkerton Hawks in their final division series.

After winning the first three games of the series, the Hornets gave up a loss in game four.

They returned stronger than ever in game five and eliminated the Patriots with a 10-6 final game to win the North Conference.

Port Hope came to the semi-final after dispatching the Lakefield Chiefs in six games to claim the East Conference title.

In the final series the Panthers got off to a good start with a 5-3 win in game one.

The series was tied when the Hornets won 3-2 in game two on home ice in Alliston.

The Panthers took a lead after winning game three.

The series took an ominous turn for the Hornets in game four when Alliston took the lead in the second period then broke a 2-2 tie in the third to again go ahead. The Panthers tied the game and went ahead but the Hornets again tied the game at the midway mark in the final frame to force overtime.

The OT period ended with a quick Port Hope goal in what would be the Hornets final appearance ice for this season.

Going back to Port Hope for game five, Alliston fans were hopeful the Hornets could bring the series back to Alliston.

All hope had pretty much evaporated when Port Hope scored three in the first period then followed up with three more in the second to lead by six going into the final frame.

The game ended with a 6-2 loss and the series was over.

Alliston’s Stephen Nosad got the final Hornets game of the season when he scored on a powerplay with 5:20 left on the clock.

The Panthers will now go on to the Schmalz Cup final to play the Ayr Centennials in the final series.

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