Truro wins big over Valley to cap run of three games in three days
TRURO – The friendly confines of RECC were certainly that on the weekend to the Truro Bearcats.
Truro Bearcats forward Cole Hawes fires a shot at Valley Wildcats goaltender Jeff Arkin Sunday in their Maritime Junior Hockey League contest at RECC. Truro won the game 5-2. Matthew Veno – Truro Daily News
The Bearcats (4-0-0-1) manhandled the Valley Wildcats (2-2-0-0) to the tune of a 5-2 victory in front of 476 fans on Sunday, just a day after beating the Amherst Ramblers 5-3 in their Maritime Junior Hockey League home opener.
Couple those victories with a 4-2 win Friday in Woodstock and the Bearcats went to bed Sunday night a bunch of happy lads.
“It was definitely huge for the boys,” said Bearcats defenceman Jordan McNaughton, who scored a pair of goals Sunday. “We’re on a bit of a roll here. It feels like everyone is clicking and it’s all going good.”
Tyler Morrison, Cole Hawes and Mitchell Robillard also scored Sunday for Truro, which held a 2-0 lead after the first period and a 4-0 cushion after 40 minutes. Jordan Kennedy made 27 saves for the win.
Mike Molloy and Pat MacIsaac spoiled Kennedy’s shutout bid in the third period. Jeff Arkin was handed the loss after making 21 stops and was replaced by Blade Mann-Dixon to start the third period. He made eight saves the rest of the way.
Truro outshot Valley 36-29 and controlled the play for most of the game.
“It was good to have the lead after the first period and I thought our goaltender was good,” Bearcats coach Shawn Evans said. “When we needed him, he made some big saves and he was a major cog in the wheel today.”
Sunday’s victory was the fourth in a row for the Bearcats after opening the season with a 6-5 shootout loss to the Campbellton Tigers. After recovering with a victory over the Miramichi Timberwolves the following night, the Bearcats wanted to keep the momentum going on the weekend.
“Coach really wanted the wins so we went out and got them for him and all the boys wanted them too,” said McNaughton, a 5’11, 193-pounder who played with the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires last season. “It’s huge to show the fans we’re going to be a force to be reckoned with and hopefully they keep coming and supporting us.”
Although there weren’t many fans doing that Sunday. Saturday’s tilt attracted 1,033 as pre-game celebrations acknowledged last season’s Fred Page Cup victory and trip to the RBC Cup Canadian championship.
“It was nice to see everyone out,” McNaughton said. “It definitely fired the boys up.”
McNaughton said capping a run of three wins in as many days was especially satisfying with the way his team did it, dictating the tone of the game and rarely giving up quality scoring chances.
“To win it like that is huge because all the boys were pretty tired,” McNaughton said. “(Valley) didn’t give up, but we pushed back and got a big win and didn’t give them anything really.”
The Bearcats are back in action Oct. 5 when they host the Pictou County Crushers at 7 p.m. at RECC.
NOTE: A new player arrived in the Hubtown for the Bearcats late Sunday.
Jacob Smith was acquired from the Kemptville 73’s of the Central Canada Hockey League on Friday for future considerations. The 18-year-old centre, who has OHL experience as a member of the Kingston Frontenacs and Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, notched 10 goals and added 10 assists in 42 games last season for Kemptville.
“We got real good reports on the kid,” Evans said. “We think he can help us now, and at that age he can help us in the future.”
On Twitter: @tdnmatt
FLAG: INSTANT REPLAY
The outcome – Truro Bearcats 5; Valley Wildcats 2.
What it means – The Bearcats improve to 4-0-0-1 while Valley falls to 2-2-0-0.
The scorers – Truro: Jordan McNaughton (2), Mitchell Robillard, Tyler Morrison, Cole Hawes; Valley: Mike Molloy, Pat MacIsaac.
Attendance – 476
Next Up – The Bearcats are back in action Oct. 5 when they host the Pictou County Crushers at 7 p.m. at RECC.