St. John’s native Brad Peddle and his St. Francis Xavier X-Men came up just a bit short of capping off what would have been an upset run to a national title as they lost 4-2 to the University of Alberta in the final of the David Johnston Cup, the U Sports Canadian university men’s hockey championship Sunday in Fredericton, N.B.
Peddle, the 2017-18 Atlantic conference (AUS) coach of the year, guided the fifth-seeded X-Men to a 6-2 quarter-final win over the Brock Badgers before knocking off the top-ranked and hometown University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds 5-4 in overtime in the semifinal round.
Earlier this month, the X-Men had been swept by UNB in the AUS final series.
St. FX’s roster included defencemen Aaron Hoyles of Gander and forward Marcus Cuomo of St. John’s. Freshman forward Tyler Boland of St. John’s had two goals and an assist for UNB in the tournament, including a tally in the Varsity Red’s 5-4 OT win over Saskatchewan in the bronze-medal game.
A third AUS entry in the tourney, the Acadia Axemen, had Kris Hodge of C.B.S. and St. John’s -born Jack McClelland on its roster. Acadia was knocked off the Alberta in the quarter-finals.
The U Sports national women’s hockey championship was also held over the weekend in London. Ont., where two teams from the Atlantic conference were entered.
However, neither the Saint Mary’s Huskies, with Nicole Blanche of Dunville and Laura Horwood of Grand Falls-Windsor in their lineup, or the St. FX X-Women, with Brooke Noseworthy of Dunville, made it to the medal-round playoffs.