Ramblers clinging to playoff berth

Jody Jewers
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AMHERST - The Ramblers are hanging on to that final playoff berth in the Maritime Junior A Hockey League's Bent Division.
Amherst hit the road for a pair of contests, winning 4-3 against the Campbellton Tigers on Friday, then falling 5-1 to the Miramichi Timberwolves the next night. The Ramblers now have 38 points on the season, two more than the Yarmouth Mariners, who won twice in a three-game weekend homestand. Both clubs have six games left.
"We can only control our own games," Ramblers head coach and general manager Corey Crocker said. "Everyone on our team knows what's at stake and every game is important."
On Friday, Amherst's top line of Justin Matthews, Brandon Street and Jeremy Barron led the way on offence, collecting nine points. Matthews was in on every goal, scoring twice and adding a pair of helpers. Street picked up a goal and two assists, and Barron contributed a pair of helpers.
The Ramblers held period leads of 2-1 and 3-2. Jon Waye made 26 saves to get the victory in goal.
On Saturday, Matthews' power-play goal 9:54 into the second period was all Amherst could muster against the red-hot Timberwolves, who are 8-1-1 in their last 10 games, including a victory over the 40-2-0-1 Woodstock Slammers. Waye was peppered with 43 shots.
Both teams padded their leads in their respective divisions in penalty minutes, with seven fights among the 138 minutes handed out by referee Lyndon Pike, 75 minutes to the Ramblers.
"I can see why they've beaten Woodstock," Crocker said. "They're a tough, nasty, in-your-face team.
"That said, if we had put forth the same effort in the third period that we did in the first, we might have had better success. We have to be more consistent in our effort against teams like that."
The Ramblers are four points behind Bridgewater and Halifax, who are tied for third in the Bent thanks to Halifax's 7-3 win on Sunday. Bridgewater has three games in hand on Amherst, and Halifax two.
NOTES - Forward Kodi Estey was a healthy scratch for both games ... The Ramblers have rescheduled their postponed game in January with the Pictou County Weeks Crushers to Feb. 23 at 7:30 p.m., in New Glasgow ... Amherst plays three games in three days this weekend, a home-and-home with Truro and a home game with Miramichi.

jjewers@amherstdaily.com

Organizations: Maritime Junior A Hockey League, Campbellton Tigers

Geographic location: Brandon Street, Pictou County, New Glasgow

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  • Vince
    February 24, 2010 - 23:45

    It will be a tight race to the finish with Yarmouth starting to get some key wins of late. The young Ramblers will be in hard against Miramichi and Truro in two of their final games. Anything can happen and I hope for the best for the Amherst team.

    FO AMHERST RAMBLERS GO.