Bearcats primed for MHL final

Published on April 14, 2017

Truro Bearcats goaltender Jason Rioux has been brilliant in the MHL playoffs and will be called upon to come up big against the Miramichi Timberwolves in the final series.

©File photo

TRURO, N.S. – The Truro Bearcats hit the road to New Brunswick Saturday to open their Maritime Junior Hockey League championship series.

The Bearcats visit the Miramichi Timberwolves for Game 1 in the best-of-seven series. Game time is 7:30 p.m.

“We’re excited; it’s time to play,” said Bearcats coach Shawn Evans. “When you get to this point, you’ve had a great season. If you can get beyond this point, then it’s a special season. That’s my message to these guys.”

The Bearcats last playoff game was played Monday, when they wrapped up their Eastlink South Division final series against the Amherst Ramblers in five games.

Truro goes to Miramichi tonight looking to hand the Timberwolves their first loss of the post-season.

“Our opponent’s really good,” Evans said. “We’re going to have to play better than we did in the first two rounds, and that’s the way it should be.

“We have a game plan and we’re going to try and do our best to execute it. We can’t have any success with one line; we need 20 players to chip in, starting in Game 1.”

Evans said the Timberwolves have three solid offensive lines and two of the best defencemen in the league – Lee Dower and all-star Michael Constantine.

He said it’s important his team plays well right from the opening faceoff.

“We can’t go there to dip our toe in; we’ve got to go there and dive in,” he said. “Our opponent’s really good and they’re coming right out of the gate. You can’t stand around and see how the game’s going to go; you got to get out there and get busy.”

Game 2 in the series will be played Tuesday in Truro at the Rath Eastlink Community Centre, beginning at 7 p.m.


Truro Bearcats

Record: 35-13-1-1

Versus Miramichi


How they got here

Def. Yarmouth 4-1

Def. Amherst 4-1

Players to watch

Kyle Tibbo (8-7-15)

Brandon Hughes (1-12-13)

Nic Blanchard (4-7-11)

Starting goalie

Jason Rioux: 8-2, 2.21 GAA, .919 save %

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Miramichi Timberwolves

Record: 35-12-2-1

Versus Truro


How they got here

Def. St. Stephen 4-0

Def. Summerside 4-0

Players to watch

Campbell Pickard (7-7-14)

Makail Parker (7-5-12)

Curtis Hastings (6-5-11)

Starting goalie

Michael Botiz: 7-0, 1.43 GAA, .951 save %