ALBERTON -- They’ve met a dozen times already this hockey season and on Sunday at 1 p.m. the Mid-Isle Matrix and the Western Regals will play for gold in the championship final of the Atlantic Midget AAA Hockey championship. The tournament is being played at the Jacques Cartier Arena.
The two Island teams rose to the top of the standings at the end of the round-robin portion of the five-team tournament., the Regals in first place with a 4-0 record and eight points and the Matrix second with three wins and six points. Their only loss was to the Regals, 3-2 on Friday, the winning goal coming in the final minute of regulation time.
Regals and Matrix players came close to a clean sweep of the hardware at the tournament's awards banquet Saturday night. The Regals' TJ Shea was named tournament MVP and teammate Brandon Williams was named top defenceman. Cody Miller of the Matrix picked up the top scorer award, based on four goals and five assists, and Sean MacPhee of the Matrix was named the tournament's top goaltender. Grant Nolan of the St. John's Marshalls picked up the award for top forward.
First and second place teams play in the 1 p.m. gold medal game; third and fourth place teams will play in the bronze medal game at 10 a.m.
The St. John’s Marshalls, finished third with a win, two losses and a tie, for three points while the Bedford Blues earned two ties for two points. The Saint John Warriors finished out of the play-offs, picking up a single point in four games.
The Regals, hosts of the Atlantic championship, narrowly beat out the Matrix for first place in the P.E.I. Midget AAA Hockey League’s regular season and last week ousted them 3-2 in the play-off championship series.
The Matrix picked up two wins in the final day of round-robin games at the Atlantic championship Saturday. They started the day with a 4-0 shut-out of the Warriors and finished it with a 6-2 victory over the Marshals. In between, the Regals picked up a 6-2 victory over the Blues.