Mariners blank Ramblers

Jody Jewers
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AMHERST -- The Ramblers (6-5-0-1) lost 1-0 to the Yarmouth Mariners (6-6-0-1) in Maritime Junior A Hockey League action at the Stadium tonight.

Following is the blog transcript:

Pre-game notes -- Ramblers were active on the trade front today, sending the rights to defenceman Rob McEwan to the Summerside Western Capitals in exchange for the rights to forward Brandon Street and future considerations (that usually means cash).

McEwan, 18, was designated for assignment by the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's Saint John Sea Dogs today and is expected to report to the Capitals. The Mississauga, Ont., native played in five games with Saint John this season, with no points, eight penalty minutes and a plus-minus of plus-4.

Street, 18, has three goals and two assists for the QMJHL's P.E.I. Rocket this season in 13 games to go with a plus-minus rating of 0. Street is listed at six-foot-one, 159 pounds and hails from Bonavista, N.L.

6:30 p.m. -- Teams out for the warmup. Yarmouth short a couple of bodies, dressing 16 skaters. Graham Ferguson and Dakota Johnson are serving suspensions. Also scratched are Davey Shea, Brandon McDonald and Shane Innes. Josh Coleman, Zach Carson and Simon Bissonnette are back for the Ramblers after serving suspensions. Injured are Jonathan Pardy (shoulder), Scott Bragg (jaw) and Brandon Mercer (hip pointer).

Referee tonight is Kevin Arsenault. Starting goalies are Jon Waye for Amherst and Justin Collier for Yarmouth.

7:03 p.m. -- Puck has dropped and we're underway. Ramblers first line is Matthews centering O'Neill and Chipman.

7:03 p.m. -- Arsenault has the whistle out early. Yarmouth's Nick Gouthro off for boarding just 19 seconds in.

7:04 p.m. -- Chipman and Matthews with Jeremy Barron as a PP unit. Orr with Layton and Carson for a second unit.

7:06 p.m. -- Penalty over. Ramblers with three shots on goal and are making a conscious effort to make fewer passes around the perimeter and send pucks toward the net.

7:09 p.m. -- Ramblers' Eric Boudreau flattens Yarmouth's Ryan Nickerson with a clean open ice hit in front of Waye.

7:10 p.m. -- Line combos for Amherst: Chipman-Matthews-O'Neill, Orr-Barron- Coleman, Bissonnette-Carson-Layton, O'Byrne and Estey being rotated in. Defence pairings are Smith-Boudreau, Matheson-McLaughlin and Mathieu-Herrett.

7:14 p.m. -- Matthews can't reach a rebound with three-quarters of an open net to shoot at.

7:17 p.m. -- Bad shift from the Bissonnette-Carson-Layton line, having all kinds of trouble getting the puck out of their own end.

7:18 p.m. -- 9:21 to go in the 1st. Shots 11-6 Amherst.

7:20 p.m. -- First 10 minutes all Amherst, but Yarmouth getting more chances now.

7:21 p.m. -- Yarmouth's first PP, with Shane O'Byrne sitting two for holding at 12:14.

7:23 p.m. -- Justin Matthews just misses Kody Orr on a centering pass in front of the Yarmouth net while shorthanded.

7:24 p.m. -- Penalty over.

7:26 p.m. -- 4:21 left. Faceoff outside the Yarmouth blueline.

7:27 p.m. -- Amherst's Drew McLaughlin sent sprawling hard into the end boards by Yarmouth's Carl Hayes. He gets two for tripping, and he and Ryan Matheson exchange punches but Matheson draws the only penalty for that, so no PP. All this at 16:19.

7:31 p.m. -- In the final minute now.

7:32 p.m. -- Period over. Shots 15-12 Amherst.

After 20 minutes -- Pretty even so far. Ramblers the better team in the first 10 minutes, Yarmouth better in the second half of the frame. Amherst with more jump than a week ago in the loss to Pictou County, and that should translate into some goals as this game wears on.

7:48 p.m. -- Second period underway.

7:50 p.m. -- Amherst's Jeremy Barron rings a shot off the crossbar in the first two minutes. Ramblers with good pressure to start the period.

7:52 p.m. -- Ramblers coach Corey Crocker with some words for Trevor Layton after a shift. Layton a step behind on a breakout pass which went for an icing call.

7:53 p.m. -- Yarmouth's Rejean Deveau checking to make sure his teeth are intact after an errant stick hit him in the mush. No penalty on the play.

7:57 p.m. -- 13:34 to go in the period. Shots 6-3 Amherst in the period, 21-15 for the game. Faceoff to Collier's left.

7:59 p.m. -- Ryan Matheson pinches in on an odd-man rush, and his rebound shot is deflected and lands millimetres from the Yarmouth goal before being swept away.

8 p.m. -- Crowd with a nice ovation for the Ramblers after that last shift. They're working hard, but it has yet to translate on the scoreboard.

8:05 p.m. -- Yarmouth's Nick Gouthro blocks a point shot and is sprung on a partial breakaway, but can only manage a harmless wrist shot into Waye's chest.

8:05 p.m. -- Ramblers have been all over the Mariners most of this period. Collier keeping his team in it.

8:08 p.m. -- Yarmouth on the board first, as Rejean Deveau catches Waye coming across his crease too late and buries a pass from David Wilband at 14:03. Mitch Kerr with the second assist. 1-0 Mariners.

8:10 p.m. -- Amherst with a PP chance, as Yarmouth's Mitch Kerr goes off for holding the stick at 15:20.

8:13 p.m. -- What a shift from Ramblers captain Adam Chipman. Catches a point shot in the groin from his own guy on the PP, but the puck isn't cleared and he stays on the ice. He just misses a rebound opportunity for a goal while fighting through obvious pain, and is slammed into the boards when he goes to retrieve the puck after it had been swept into the corner.

8:14 p.m. -- Penalty over. Ramblers with seven shots on goal in the man advantage and are doing everything right, but Collier is in a zone right now.

8:18 p.m. -- Second period over. Shots 20-9 Amherst in the period, 35-21 Ramblers through two.

After 40 minutes -- Mariners have stopped skating and have clearly put this game in the hands of their goaltender. Amherst has to find a way to stop Collier from stealing this one.

8:35 p.m. -- Third period underway.

8:36 p.m. -- Teams pick up right where they left off. Ramblers in the Yarmouth end for the first minute, but still can't solve Collier.

8:37 p.m. -- Kodi Estey with a great backhand feed to Simon Bissonnette in close, but Collier stops that.

8:43 p.m. -- Mariners clogging up the neutral zone now, trying to hang on. Yarmouth's Neil Coombs with the hit of the night, depositing Ramblers defenceman Drew McLaughlin into the Yarmouth bench.

8:46 p.m. -- 11:10 left. Shots 6-4 Amherst in the period.

8:46 p.m. -- Kody Orr sent in on a nice chip pass from Jeremy Barron, but Collier gets out a pad to stop that.

8:48 p.m. -- Mariners doing absolutely nothing on offence. It's Collier or bust.

8:49 p.m. -- Trevor Layton with some good work down low. Collier had to look behind him to make sure he'd smothered Layton's rebound shot.

8:51 p.m. -- Kudos to referee Arsenault for letting these teams play, too. Very clean hockey game to this point.

8:55 p.m. -- 4:00 left.

8:56 p.m. -- Almost five minutes without a whistle. Collier finally stops play with 3:40 left. Ramblers now with 51 shots on goal for the game.

8:58 p.m. -- 2:43 remaining. Faceoff to Collier's right.

8:59 p.m. -- Ramblers ice the puck on a breakout with 1:43 remaining.

9 p.m. -- Collier in the corner to play the puck and he and Trevor Layton get tangled up. Yarmouth's Andrew Walker races in and starts wailing on Layton, who has Collier pinned against the boards. Collier is down and not moving while being attended to by the Mariners trainer. 1:29 left on the clock.

9:01 p.m. -- Collier back up. Crowd is booing, thinking he stayed down to gain sympathy from the ref when assessing penalties. Nothing on the scoreboard yet to indicate a man advantage.

9:03 p.m. -- Referee explains the situation to both benches. It's still five-on-five hockey. Faceoff outside the Mariners blueline.

9:04 p.m. -- In the final minute. Waye on the Ramblers bench. Net is off the moorings, so play whistled dead with 52.9 seconds left. Faceoff to Collier's left. Ramblers call timeout. Still no idea what the penalties were on that scrum.

9:06 p.m. -- Play has resumed. Adam Chipman called for high-sticking with 43.9 seconds to go, and gets 10 more for arguing that, so he's gone. Penalties on the scrum involving Collier were aggressor and fighting to Andrew Walker, and a charging major and game misconduct to Trevor Layton.

9:08 p.m. -- Yarmouth hangs on for the 1-0 win. Shots 16-7 Amherst for the period, 51-28 for the game. Ramblers coach Corey Crocker assessed a game misconduct as the teams head off the ice.

Three stars -- 1. Justin Collier, Yarmouth; 2. Jon Waye, Amherst; 3. Rejean Deveau, Yarmouth. Might've gone with Chipman at No. 2, but with the late penalty, Waye as good a choice as any.

Final thoughts -- Justin Collier absolutely stole the show. Ramblers played solid positional hockey and deserved a better fate, but their lack of a true sniper is becoming more apparent with each passing game.

Organizations: Mariners, Capitals, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Maritime Junior A Hockey League Collier's

Geographic location: Yarmouth, Brandon Street, Mississauga Saint John Bonavista Pictou County

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