The Novice Cougars (Chris) took to the ice on Mar. 7 as they hosted one half of the A side division playoff bracket. Their first game was at 10:30 a.m. against the Estevan Flames.
The boys came out with their feet on their hypothetical gas pedals and snuffed out the Flames 14-7.
Owen "Top Cheese" Light led the offensive charge, notching 6 goals and adding 5 assists. Hayden "Hands and Hair" Puskas followed suit and continued his stellar play from previous weeks and put up 7 points (5 goals 2 assists). Some nice secondary scoring added a nice dynamic to the playoff run with Nash "The Flash" Faber adding a goal and 2 assists from the back end. Reed "The Rifle" Coffey joined the party with 2 points, deflecting in a "Top Cheese" shot and assisting on another. Keenan "Sharknado" Winkler played like a man possessed and ended the game with a goal and 2 assists and Brody "Crash the Crease" Knelsen added an apple of his own to get on the scoresheet.
Although Griff "Coast to Coast" Eaton didn't get in on the scoring he played a great playoff brand of defence and for his efforts served 3 minutes for slashing.
So with the 14-7 win the boys were of to the league semi-finals against the Estevan Knights, who had won a close game against the Kipling Royals 11-10.
4:30 p.m. rolled around and with the Cougars home rink in a frenzy, the air horn blaring, and redline pumping threw the speakers, the boys took to the ice for a chance to advance to the MMHL Novice Championship.
This game saw bits of everything, from scoring, to penalties, to beautiful passing and a healthy helping of "Clappers", which means slapshots for those who aren't up to date on the lingo. Momentum swayed from side to side, with both teams fighting for the finals berth.
Goals from "Top Cheese" (5), "Coast to Coast" (2), "The Flash" (3) and "Hands and Hair" (3), showed that the Fab 4 was ready for playoff hockey and they were almost impossible to defend. The 4 also added a handful of assists, as did "Crash the Crease", and "Sharknado".
Xander "The Postman" Brown and "The Rifle" clogged up the neutral zone, making the Knights fight for every inch, which doesn't get you on the score sheet, but it sure gets you in the coaches good graces.
Nik "Brickwall" Brown, had a great day in the crease and when he felt momentum swaying away from the Cougars he did what every great goalie has done since the beginning of time , he shut the door, and he did it time after time, and kept the Cougars in the drivers seat . Jim Taylor once said, "Goalies are three sandwiches shy of a picnic", and if that means they are a little quirky, then I think Jim was talking about "Brickwall" Brown, because this kid is a beauty (more hockey lingo meaning just a swell fella).
When the final buzzer sounded the scoreboard read 13-12 for the good guys.
A great day of hockey, and teamwork has the boys off to play for the championship on Mar. 14 in Estevan against the Estevan Canucks. "Pressure is a privilege", said Billie Jean King and I’m sure these boys will be feeling the nerves, but with the combination of skill, character, and moxie, I’m sure this will be a great final game, so If you have plans cancel them. If you didn't have plans, well you do now. Gas up the car, load up the kids, call in sick to work, heck fake your own death if you have to, but get to Estevan to watch this spirited tilt.
Also a special thanks to Syds Pipes for the guaranteed 50/50, the sultry sounds of Mike Brown doing the announcing, and everyone else who organized and helped pull off a great day of hockey.
Good luck boys and Hope to see a bunch of familiar faces in Estevan on the 14th.