Cats look to even series after being embarrassed by Mariners

Matt Veno
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TRURO - Nothing has come easy for the Truro Bearcats this season.

Based on Game 1 of their Maurice Bent Division semifinal against the Yarmouth Mariners Saturday, when the Bearcats were embarrassed 8-2, winning in the postseason won't either.

"It looks like we're going to take the hard route again," said Bearcats coach Shawn Evans.

But taking the bumpy, winding road is just fine with the bench boss as his team enters Game 2 of the best-of-seven Maritime Junior Hockey League set in Yarmouth tonight at 7:30 p.m. Game 3 is Thursday in Truro.

"Any team I've had success with has been battle tested," he said. "I believe this group is and I've got their back. I've got a good club and a good group of young men but we need to take some responsibility and get busy out there."

The Bearcats have battled adversity all season long. After a shaky start, the Bearcats managed to climb out of fifth place in their division to finish second and even threaten the Pictou County Weeks Crushers for top spot. Bearcats defenceman Sam Caldwell, who had an assist in Saturday's loss, said he feels dealing with trying times this season will only help the Bearcats out of the whole they're in.

"We played a lot of close games and that builds character," he said. "Last year, we won almost every game and in the playoffs we didn't step up. But this year we've got a good group of guys and we're definitely going to battle, especially after losing 8-2."

Caldwell, a North Sydney native, said getting whalloped on home ice is a wake-up call for he and his teammates.

"Nobody likes losing 8-2, especially in their own barn," he said. "So we're going to come back 100 times harder and show them how we're going to play the rest of the series."

The Mariners caught the Bearcats off guard Saturday as Kyle Campbell netted a short-handed tally just 1:48 into the game to start his hat-trick performance. Colin Campbell, Robbie Lepine, Kenny Mahoney, Ben MacLaughlin and Jared Hicks also scored.

Stephen Horyl and Jordan Mock responded for Truro. Spencer Scott surrendered six goals on 18 shots and was replaced by Kirk Rafuse early in the third period.

But Evans wasn't hanging the loss on his goaltenders.

"Spencer deserved to play in my opinion," he said. "He had a great second half and played the last three games against them.

"I thought we were ready to play and we weren't. I'll take full responsibility for that."

But Evans said Saturday's beating should be enough to wake his club up.

"They embarrassed us in every way possible and if my group wasn't embarrassed by that I don't know what it will take."

Although Caldwell said Saturday's game "was a bad loss," he said nobody in the Truro dressing room is hanging their head. It's just a matter of getting back to basics and making sure the Bearcats play their own game.

"It's only one game," he said. "You've got to win four, so there's still a long way to go. It's not close to being over yet."

sports@trurodaily.com

Organizations: Mariners, Bent Division, Truro Daily News

Geographic location: Colchester Legion Stadium

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  • Brian
    March 06, 2011 - 11:08

    Give credit where credit is due, Yarmouth played a heck of a game with some very poor refereeing taking place..not to mention some pretty dirty moves on part of the Truro team, and I'm from Truro!

    • philm
      March 07, 2011 - 08:16

      Hey how was that guys ?! No Defensive hockey Sat. night! Hoped you enjoyed that!!! Growler, lets stick to the hockey that Wins!! DEFENSE FIRST

    • ryan
      March 07, 2011 - 15:40

      well im from yarmouth me and my uncle and my cousin drove to watch these to very good teams go at it but if yarmouth plays the way the did well win the series i found the bearcats played a very strong out shoot yarmouth but the mariners had a really solid goalie in net in my opinion i do think yarmouth well take it

    • Growler
      March 07, 2011 - 17:53

      Hey Philm, it just doesn't matter to me anymore how the Bearcats play, I don't attend the games anymore, my choice by the way, which doesnt make me anything but uninterested in the hockey there. I can't comment on how they played Saturday night, I was commenting on why I no longer find the hockey exciting, I also never tried to tell anyone who still attends and enjoys the style of play to stop going. If I had to guess how they played, I would say not well. There is one point that I should make though, Defensive hockey is always more effective if you score first and have a good PP, when you don't you are forced to play more wide open and sometimes you can come back and sometimes you can't, obviously the Bearcats couldn't on Saturday night., and their usually good PP didn't come through. I would also like to defend myself a bit here as well, I never said I was a hockey genious, but I don't think im a hockey dummy either, im not a Leaf fan so im 1 and 0 already, lol. I didn't try to persaude anyone to join my opinion, I simply stated why I don't find the games exciting anymore, I don't believe I dismissed anyone elses ideas until I got pot shots taken at me, and I still don't think its music and give aways. Family rates to get in might help for some people, lets not forget we are still in hard times in the maritimes. If you still enjoy the games and the defensive brand is your thing, enjoy the games, I don't hate the team and wish them the best but its just not for me anymore. I hope they have a better game in Yarmouth tonight but if Yarmouth gets hold of that newspaper article, it might give them some motivation, seems like they are not giving Yarmouth much credit for the win and sometimes that can come back and bite you. You obviously are not going to brag up the opposition but you don't brush them off to a lucky win either, these are playoffs and anything can happen this time of year.