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’Cats look to close out series Monday

Bearcats captain Kyle Tibbo celebrates his game-winning goal on Saturday at the Amherst Stadium. Tibbo notched a power-play marker with 3:25 remaining to give Truro a 3-2 victory.
Bearcats captain Kyle Tibbo celebrates his game-winning goal on Saturday at the Amherst Stadium. Tibbo notched a power-play marker with 3:25 remaining to give Truro a 3-2 victory.

TRURO, N.S. – The Truro Bearcats have a chance to advance to the Maritime Junior Hockey League final Monday.

The Bearcats take a 3-1 lead into Game 5 at the Rath Easlink Community Centre (7 p.m.) in their divisional semifinal series against the Amherst Ramblers.

Playing well out of the gate and better puck management in the defensive zone will be key to success, says Bearcats coach Shawn Evans.

“We got to limit our turnovers in our own zone,” he said. “We want to play line to line; we want to clear the blueline and then we want to make the right decision at the red line.”

Truro took a stranglehold on the series Saturday with a crucial 3-2 victory in front of a crowd of 2,194 at the Amherst Stadium.

In that contest, the Bearcats got a pair of power-play goals and 36 saves from goaltender Jason Rioux.

“Our goalie was really good and we won the special teams, and on the road those are two ingredients you need to have if you’re going to be successful,” Evans said.

Jordan King of the Ramblers scored shorthanded to open the game’s scoring at 12:12 of the first period. However, Cam MacLeod answered 41 seconds later on the same power play to tie it at one apiece.

Denver Lynds gave Truro a 2-1 lead at 5:07 of the second, before King tied it with eight minutes to go in the third.

Kyle Tibbo made the Ramblers pay for a late penalty, when he converted with the man-power advantage with 3:25 left to give the Bearcats victory.

“Our power play hasn’t been very good in this round; credit to our opponent, but sometimes it’s not how many times you score on the power play, it’s when you score that is most important, and both goals Saturday were at very important times on the power play,” Evans said.

Game 6, if necessary, will be played Tuesday in Amherst.

The winner of the series will meet the Miramichi Timberwolves in the league final. Miramichi defeated the Summerside Western Capitals 5-1 Friday to complete a four-game sweep in the Eastlink North Division final.

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