TRURO - To say the Truro Bearcats got out of the gates well to start 2014 would be a bit of an understatement.
They blew them to pieces.
The Bearcats (21-8-0-2) capped their first weekend of 2014 Sunday with a 6-3 victory over the Summerside Western Capitals (10-17-2-1) in Summerside less than a day after smashing the Woodstock Slammers (14-15-2-1) 11-2 in front of 622 fans at RECC and a live EastLink TV audience.
"Obviously it's great to get off to a start like that," said Bearcats captain Phillip Fife, who collected eight points on the weekend, including three goals and three assists against Woodstock. "It's a great start and hopefully we can keep it going because our division is really tough this year."
The Bearcats sit second in the EastLink Division, six points behind the league-leading Pictou County Crushers (21-8-0-2) and just two points ahead of the Yarmouth Mariners (20-9-2-0).
Woodstock and Summerside, the defending league champions, are third and fourth respectively in the Roger Meek Division.
The results pick up right where the Bearcats left off in 2013 as Truro won seven of its 11 games before the break.
"At this point, every game can make a difference in the end so from that point of view, for us, it's a bit of a carry over from how we ended the first half," Bearcats coach Shawn Evans said. "We're playing well and going in a positive direction."
On Sunday, the Bearcats scored four second-period goals, and three in three minutes, to break open a 1-1 contest in front of 586 fans. Tyler Morrison scored just 2:14 into the frame before Jordan McNaughton, Colby Lanceleve and Kyle Tibbo, on the powerplay, went for the jugular.
Summerside's Alex Bradley cut the Truro lead to 5-2 by the end of the period.
"That gave us some breathing room," Evans said. "It wasn't our best 60 minutes of the year, but we'll never turn down a road win, ever."
Mitchell Robilard scored in the third period for Truro and Isaac Jay responded for the Capitals. Truro defenceman Jean-Marc Evans-Renaud opened the scoring before Brad Power knotted the contest in the opening stanza.
Jordan Kennedy made 31 saves for the win while Simon-Pier Chamberland made 41 stops in the Summerside crease.
On Saturday, Mitchell Robillard and David Mosher each scored a pair of goals while singles came from Daniel perigo, Daniel Poliziani, Jeff Hanes and Tibbo. Perigo also recorded three assists as did Morrison. Jacob Smith chipped in two helpers and Jacob Fancy stopped 24 shots for the win.
Woodstock starter Matt Jenkins made 17 saves before giving way to Tyler Snow in the second period, which saw Truro score five goals. Snow stopped 12 shots the rest of the way.
Evans credited the victory to his team working to its strengths.
"That's not going to happen every night," Evans said fo the score. "But when we use our speed and manage the puck and take it to the other team's defense, we're tough to play against. That's what we need to do and that's whet we need to be."
The Bearcats are back in action Friday when they travel to Kentville to take on the Valley Wildcats (13-16-3-1) at 7:30 p.m. before returning home to host Woodstock Saturday at 7 p.m. at RECC.
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