The Yarmouth Mariners opened up a 4-0 lead early in the second period, and went on to down the Capitals 6-2 at Eastlink Arena on Tuesday night. The game was part of the MHL (Maritime Junior Hockey League) Showcase, which features all 12 teams playing two games in Summerside on Tuesday and Wednesday.
“We were real poor in the first part of the game,” assessed Capitals head coach Billy McGuigan. “I didn’t think our structure was there, or our compete level was high.
“Yarmouth was a better team through the first part of the game. It’s a different type of format here, you are playing two 25-minute periods. You get behind, and it’s hard to get back.”
The Mariners took a 3-0 lead into the intermission, and extended that margin to 4-0 early in the second period. The Caps closed to within 4-2 with under seven minutes to go, but the Mariners answered with two late goals to put the game out of reach.
Logan Timmons and Brendan Young each registered a goal and two assists to lead the Eastlink South Division-leading Mariners, who upped their record to 7-1-0-0 (won-lost-overtime losses-shootout losses). Duncan McKie (1-1), Luc Poirier, Andrew Martell and Matt Smith also dented the twine for Yarmouth.
TJ Shea and Scott Bagby countered for the Capitals (4-4-0-0). Brodie MacArthur and Jordan Spence added assists.
Winning goaltender Leif Hertz finished with 16 saves while the Caps’ Cody Smith was tested 18 times.
The game’s three stars were:
1. Logan Timmons (Mariners), 2. Brendan Young (Mariners), 3. Scott Bagby (Capitals).
It was the start of a challenging stretch for the Capitals, who will also face three more stiff tests on home ice over the next five days. The Capitals take on the Amherst Ramblers (4-2-1-1) as part of the MHL Showcase on Wednesday at 7 p.m., and then host the Pictou County Crushers (4-3-1-0) on Saturday at 7 p.m., and the Edmundston Blizzard (7-1-0-0), ranked second in Canada this week, visits Summerside for a rare Sunday contest at 6 p.m. The Blizzard is the former Dieppe Commandos’ franchise.
“We can clean up a lot of our structure, and we played better with our structure the last number of games,” said McGuigan in looking ahead to the Ramblers’ game. “Obviously, when you win four in a row things are going good. We came out a little flat, and that seems to be how the game went.”
McGuigan does expect the Ramblers, who are coming off a 2-0 loss to the St. Stephen Aces on Tuesday, to come out hard. The Caps outscored the Ramblers 8-6 in Amherst on Saturday night.
“We beat them in their rink, and they are going to be looking for redemption,” said McGuigan. “We know we can play with them. We had a good game against them last time, and we are hoping for another good one.”
MHL Showcase schedule at Credit Union Place:
Miramichi 4 Truro 1.
St. Stephen 2 Amherst 0.
Woodstock 5 Valley 2.
Pictou County 2 Edmundston 0.
South Shore 3 Campbellton 1.
Yarmouth 6 Western Capitals 2.
1 p.m. – Valley vs. Campbellton (Eastlink Arena).
3 p.m. – Truro vs. Edmundston (Eastlink Arena).
4 p.m. – St. Stephen vs. Yarmouth (Ice Pad).
5 p.m. – South Shore vs. Woodstock (Eastlink Arena).
6 p.m. – Pictou County vs. Miramichi (Ice Pad).
7 p.m. – Western Capitals vs. Amherst (Eastlink Arena).