Clarenville will represent Atlantic region in Allan Cup Canadian senior championship
Luke Gallant, far right, here with teammates Michael Brent, centre, and Andre Gill will join the Clarenville Caribous for the Allan Cup senior hockey championship. — Photo by Matt Molloy/The Advertiser
By Kenn Oliver
The Telegram—Grand Falls-Windsor
The Clarenville Caribous won’t have much time to dwell on a second straight runner-up effort in the Herder Memorial Trophy final.
This Saturday, a week after losing the best-of-seven final in six games to the Grand Falls-Windsor Cataracts, the Caribous, along with some additions from their Newfoundland Senior Hockey League counterparts, will head for Dundas, Ont. and the 2014 Allan Cup national senior men’s senior A hockey championship.
“After tonight, all the sour grapes are parked on the shelf and we’re ready to go again,” said Caribous general manager Derek MacPhee. “If you can’t do that, you shouldn’t be at this.”
The berth in this year’s Allan Cup originally belonged to the Conception Bay North CeeBee Stars, provincial champs last year after a surprising sweep of the Caribous in the final.
The CeeBees declined the opportunity to attend, allowing the 2013 runner-up Caribous to fill in as the Atlantic Canadian representative.
That’s not to say there won’t be any CeeBees on the roster, however.
Defencemen Mike Dyke and Doug O’Brien have been recruited for the trip, along with import centreman Matt Quinn.
Also joining the ’Bous are defencemen Rodi Short and Luke Gallant, goaltender A.J. Whiffen and, if his work schedule permits, Cam Fergus. All four are from the Cataracts.
“It’s been quite the grind,” Gallant says of the regular season and playoffs.
“But to have that opportunity, I don’t think a lot of guys can pass up on going to Ontario and trying to compete for a national title.”
The roster is being finalized tonight, but two other forwards confirmed are the Gander Flyers’ Peter Campbell and former Caribous import Chris Hulit, who was unable to commit to a regular season with team but is already signed to a card for the tournament.
No players from the Mount Pearl H.J. Bartlett Electric Blades or Western Royals were asked to join the squad.
“With players like Church (Clarenville goaltender Jason Churchill) and A.J., two of the top goalies in the league, and the defence corps we have with their guys, we’ll have the best defence in the tournament, I’m certain of that,” insisted MacPhee, adding that a couple of forwards, including Flyers’ import Rob Mignardi, have been forced to cancel in recent weeks, “so we’re going to have use a D-man or two up front.”
Joining the Caribous and the host Dundas Real McCoys at this year’s Allan Cup are the Bentley, Alta., Generals, the Brantford, Ont. Blast, the Kenora, Ont. Thistles and Manitoba’s South East Prairie Thunder.