Sporting new jerseys, the Yarmouth Mariners won Game 1 of the Eastlink South Division semi-final playoff series with a 6-1 victory over the Truro Bearcats at home on Thursday, March 14.
The Mariners wasted little time opening the scoring, going up 1-0 a minute-and-a-half into the game on a goal by Cade Neilson (Connor Peveril).
After that, the score remained 1-0 for the rest of the first frame and until the 8:31 mark of the second period when Matt Barron (Brent Broaders, Noah McMullin) put the Mariners up 2-0. The team’s lead was extended to 3-0 on the powerplay when Brent Broaders (Chris Goreham, Shawn Guison) scored.
Truro’s Gavin Hart (G. Blackmore, Dylan Burton) put the Bearcats on the scoreboard with just under three minutes remaining in the second period. But the Mariners answered back quickly – before the Bearcat’s goal had even been announced – scoring eight seconds later off the stick of Connor Peveril (Andrew Martell, Derrick Johnson).
The second period ended with two roughing after the whistle penalties extended to both teams – Gavin Hart and Curtis Heffernan for the Bearcats and Matt Barron and Logan Timmons for the Mariners. The opening of the third period saw more penalties at the 34-second mark with Truro’s Karter Renouf receiving a five-major for kneeing and a 10-minute game misconduct with Derrick Johnson getting two minutes for unsportsmanlike conduct. The Truro call was made on an illegal hit to Mariners player Brett Crossley. He was down for a bit but was able to continue playing.
Beyond those spurts of penalties there was little activity in the penalty box with the Mariners receiving 4 minutes during the game for slashing and tripping calls and Truro receiving 8 minutes on interference, too many men and two high sticking calls.
The Mariners rounded out their scoring in the first five minutes of the third period with Brett Crossley, after the hit made on him minutes earlier, scoring two powerplay goals in under two minutes. Logan Timmons assisted on both goals with Noah McMullin and Andrew Martell also serving as helpers.
In net Tyler Caseley stopped 25 of 26 Truro shots for the Mariners. Days earlier the MHL named Caseley the league's rookie of the year. He was also named as goalie for the league's all-rookie all-star team. Teammate Brady Crossley was named a defenceman on the all-rookie all-star team.
For the Bearcats, Myles Hektor faced 35 shots in net, stopping 29 of them.
Game 2 of the playoff series goes in Truro on Saturday night, March 16. The puck drops at 7 p.m.
The other Eastlink South Division semi-final series gets underway Friday night, March 15, with the Amherst Ramblers hosting the South Shore Lumberjacks at 7 p.m.
Playoff series schedule
• Game 1: Thursday, March 14, 7 p.m.– Truro at Yarmouth
• Game 2: Saturday, March 16, 7 p.m. – Yarmouth at Truro
• Game 3: Tuesday, March 19, 7 p.m. – Truro at Yarmouth
• Game 4: Thursday, March 21, 7 p.m. – Yarmouth at Truro
* Game 5: Saturday, March 23, 7:30 p.m. – Truro at Yarmouth
* Game 6: Monday, March 25, 7 p.m. – Yarmouth at Truro
* Game 7: Thursday, March 28, 7 p.m.– Truro at Yarmouth