DIEPPE – Truro Bearcats defenceman Daniel Poliziani was named the Maritime Junior Hockey League playoff MVP on Thursday.
© Joey Smith – Truro Daily News
Truro defenceman Daniel Poliziani was named MHL playoff MVP on Thursday after the Bearcats defeated the Dieppe Commandos 5-2 to win the Kent Cup in six games.
Poliziani, a 20-year-old from Burlington, Ont., helped the Bearcats defeat the Dieppe Commandos 5-2 to win the Kent Cup final series in six games.
“Honestly, it was a surprise,” Poliziani said of the accolade. “I couldn’t have done it without my teammates. To be named MVP of the playoffs, it’s a great feeling and it’s just a confidence booster and just shows that if I play my game that I can accomplish anything I want.”
Poliziani, an assistant captain, had four goals and eight assists in 14 post-season games and was a stalwart on the blueline, as he was used in all situations throughout the playoffs.
“He’s a special player and a really good dude,” coach Shawn Evans said Thursday night, shortly after guiding the Bearcats to their third Maritime league title and first since 2007. “When he decided to come here in the summer he wanted to win and he promised me he’d be a leader and he has not let me down.”
Poliziani, five-foot-eight, 174 pounds, came to Truro to finish his junior career after two seasons of major junior in the Ontario Hockey League with the Guelph Storm. During an exit meeting with the Storm at the completion of last season, the coaching staff told Poliziani a spot on the roster this year wasn’t a guarantee.
With that in mind, Poliziani started to seek other playing options, and landed in Truro on the advice of his best friend and former Bearcat Jordan Coccimiglio.
“He gave me a call and said that Truro is looking for a D,” Poliziani recalled. “Seeing that Guelph didn’t want me anymore, I think it was time for a change and it’s been the best hockey year of my life so far.”
And while the individual honour as playoff MVP is the cherry on top, Poliziani said helping the Bearcats achieve a team goal was most important.
“It’s a great feeling,” he said. “This is why I came here, to win, hopefully not just the Kent Cup, but this is what we wanted from Day 1 so it’s a great accomplishment.”