Caps play second-last home game of regular season Thursday

Jason Simmonds
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Amherst visits in make-up contest

SUMMERSIDE – The Summerside Western Capitals’ regular-season schedule is winding down in the MHL (Maritime Junior Hockey League).

Summerside Western Capitals

The Capitals will play their second-last home game before the playoffs on Thursday, when the Amherst Ramblers visit Eastlink Arena for a make-up contest at 7:30 p.m.

After Thursday’s game, the Caps will play three of their last four games on the road, including a return trip to Amherst on Saturday night.

The Capitals will close out the home portion of the regular season against the Valley Wildcats on Sunday at 2 p.m., and then visit Dieppe on Thursday, March 6, and Campbellton on Friday, March 7.

We are looking to do everything we can to give ourselves a chance to win the hockey games,” said Capitals head coach Tim Schurman.

Important games

There are an important four points at stake for the Ramblers, who are in a tight battle with the Yarmouth Mariners for third and fourth place in the Eastlink Division. The third-place team will avoid the quarter-final series against the fifth-place Wildcats.

The fourth-place Ramblers, who are coming off a 7-2 loss to the Roger Meek Division-leading Miramichi Timberwolves on Tuesday night, are one point behind the Mariners. Amherst does have two games-in-hand.

“We fully expect they are going to put their best foot forward and do everything they can to get these points and move up standings-wise and avoid the mini series,” said Schurman. “We are looking to continue to build on the foundation we started laying around the team.”

Big weekend

The Capitals, meanwhile, are coming off back-to-back wins of 5-3 over the Pictou County Weeks Crushers and 8-2 versus the Bridgewater Lumberjacks last weekend.

“It’s nice to see our guys get rewarded for how hard they are working, not only in games but in practices as well,” said Schurman.

Stavert expected back

Forward Thomas Stavert of Kensington is expected back in the Capitals’ lineup on Thursday after he was called up by the Charlottetown Islanders for Wednesday night’s Quebec Major Junior Hockey League game against the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles.

Stavert, who has scored a league-high eight game-winning goals, leads the Capitals with 49 points in 47 regular-season games. Stavert has 28 goals and 21 assists.

Game Notes

Game notes for Western Capitals and Amherst Ramblers:

When: Thursday, Feb. 27.

Where: Eastlink Arena.

Game time: 7:30 p.m.

Records: Capitals are 20-22-2-3 (won-lost-overtime losses-shootout losses), and fourth in the Roger Meek Division. The Ramblers, who are fourth in the Eastlink Division, are 29-16-1-1.

Previous meetings: Thursday’s game will be the third regular-season game between the Caps and Ramblers. The Ramblers won the first two meetings – 7-4 in Amherst on Sept. 28 and 2-1 in Summerside on Jan. 12.

At home: Capitals are 10-13-1 (won-lost-overtime losses) in the regular season.

On road: Amherst has a regular-season road record of 13-9-0.

Red hot: Capitals forward Thomas Stavert is on a nine-game point streak with the Capitals. He has nine goals and eight assists for 17 points in those nine games.

Organizations: Capitals, Mariners, Eastlink Division Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Geographic location: Dieppe, Campbellton, Pictou County Kensington Summerside

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