The Southern Shore C&W Offshore Breakers will be seeking their first junior hockey championship when they tangle with the Avalon Roebothan, McKay Marshall Capitals in the final which opens tonight at the Goulds Arena.
The opening game of the Penney Kia St. John’s Junior Hockey League best-of-seven final goes 7:30 p.m., weather permitting, at the home of the Capitals.
St. John's Junior Hockey League
Game 2 is slated for 7:40 Friday night at the Southern Shore Arena in Mobile.
The Breakers knocked off the four-time defending league champion St. John’s Hickman Automotive Group Caps in a five-game semifinal. The Capitals had a harder time of it in their semifinal, requiring a goal by Kristian Husk in overtime in Game 7 last Saturday night to dispatch the upstart CBR Assante Wealth Management Renegades.
The Capitals, who last won the city junior title in 1996, were the class of the league during the regular season, finishing with a first-place 22-6 record. The Breakers had a fine season in their own right, placing third at 19-9, one point behind the Caps.
The Breakers’ Brandon Baird won the league’s scoring title with 22 goals and 27 assists in 25 games, and Riley Ricks has certainly provided the Shore with spark after joining the team late in the season with 12 goals and 11 helpers in 10 games. Ricks has 11 points in eight playoff games.
As for the Capitals, they are led by Michael Cole, who was second to Baird by two points in the scoring race, with 26 goals and 47 points. Cole is third in playoff scoring. Avalon’s big impact player, however, is defenceman Alex Powell, who tied for sixth in overall league scoring with five goals and 30 helpers.
The real battle should be between the pipes. The Capitals’ Doug Pippy dominated this season, leading all goalies in wins (15), goals against average (2.09) and save percentage (.940).
However, Breakers’ rookie puckstop Josh Carey has been making a name for himself in this post season, posting back-to-back-to-back shutouts in his last three starts.
Carey blanked the Caps 3-0 in Game 5, 2-0 in Game 4 and 5-0 in Game 3.
Carey won 11 games this season, third-most in the league. He posted a 3.73 GAA and .902 save percentage.