The Amherst CIBC Wood Gundy Ramblers dropped both ends of a weekend home-and-home exhibition series with the Dieppe Commandos. The Ramblers sat out several veterans and have more players coming into camp this week. Dave Mathieson – Citizen-Record
Kicker: Maritime Junior Hockey League
AMHERST – After a pair of weekend exhibition losses, Amherst CIBC Wood Gundy Ramblers coach Josh Hepditch said his club is about where he thought it would be one week into camp.
“I thought the guys competed pretty good against a lineup that featured a lot of veterans,” Hepditch said Monday. “On Saturday night the guys battled pretty good and didn’t quit while on Sunday we fell behind early and just couldn’t catch up.”
On Sunday, Andrew Meredith scored three times and Ryan Langan added a pair as the Dieppe Commandos defeated the Ramblers 7-3 in exhibition Maritime Junior Hockey League action at the Arthur J. LeBlanc Arena in Dieppe.
Lindon Beckwith and Michael Hache also scored for the Commandos, who defeated the Ramblers by an identical 7-3 score in Amherst on Saturday night.
Logan Styler had a goal and an assist for Amherst with Brett Bitner and William Ford adding single goals.
Matti Jmseff and Seth Schmidt added assists.
On Saturday, Cody Drover and Justin LeBlanc each scored twice for the Commandos with Ryan Chiasson adding a goal and two assists.
Liam Conrad and Luc Eagle added single markers for Dieppe.
Nick Cass, Keegan Marcott and Schmidt scored for Amherst with Ryan Yould and William Ford each collecting two assists and Serge Boisvert and Styler adding single helpers.
Veterans Josh Pugsley, Tanner McCabe, Shane MacDonald and Zack MacEwan didn’t dress in either game, while the Commandos used most of their veterans in Sunday’s contest.
“It was sort of what we expected. Going into the weekend we knew that Dieppe was going to have an older lineup because they had a small camp with so many returning guys,” said Hepditch. “We stuck to our plan to give some of our younger guys some experience so they could size up where they need to be for when they come back next year.”
The Ramblers return to action on Saturday when they host the Summerside Western Capitals before traveling to Summerside on Sunday for a return engagement at Credit Union Place.
Lucas Batt, picked up in an offseason deal with the Commandos, is expected to arrive in Amherst sometime this week after being released by the Quebec Remparts.
Hepditch said the lineup is down to 25 players and he hopes to further reduce it to 22 with a couple of other players expected in camp later in the week. Besides Batt, Colby Livingstone is expected to arrive in Amherst later in the week from out west where he had a recent tryout with the Medicine Hat Tigers.
One player who won’t be in camp will be Brookdale’s Lucas Sangster, who has made the Charlottetown Islanders of the QMJHL. Hepditch would have liked to have the defenceman on the Ramblers’ blueline this season, but he’s thrilled that a local player is starting his career in the QMJHL.