UPDATE: Six Nations even the Minto Cup series
The Minto Cup finals is a best-of-three series now.
The Six Nations Arrows evened up the junior A championship Wednesday night, defeating the Coquitlam Jr. Adanacs 10-7 in Game 4 at the Langley Events Centre.
Coquitlam had a better showing than Tuesday’s Game 3 19-5 drubbing, but still struggled to put the ball in the net, particularly in the second half of the match.
“When you get the opportunities, you have to bury them,” said Adanacs head coach Neil Doddridge. “But our guys are giving it every shift.”
If two losses in a row had rattled the Adanacs coach, he wasn’t showing it after Wednesday’s game.
“If you told us that we would be in a best-of-three in the Minto Cup at the beginning of the summer, we would have taken it,” he said. “I”ve said since the beginning, we are built for series play. We are very healthy.”
Game 4 started well for the Adanacs, who scored two goals in the first 18 seconds before Challen Rogers made it 3-0 two minutes into the game.
However, the lead would not last for long, with the Six Nations Arrows responding with two goals less than a minute apart.
Arrows forward Haodais Maracle scored off a pass from Six Nations captain Johnny Powless before Breandon Bomberry found the back of the net, also assisted by Powless.
By the first few minutes of the second period, the Arrows had tied things with a goal from Josh Johnson. Coquitlam’s Tyler Pace briefly made it 4-3 for the Adanacs, but that would be the only offence his club could muster in the middle frame.
Powless scored two in a row for the Six Nations squad, before Ian Martin made it 6-4 on a great individual effort that saw him circle the net and burry the ball past A’s net minder Peter Dubenski.
The Arrows kept up their quick pace in the third and didn’t allow the Adanacs to close the gap, even when Bomberry took a five-minute major for high sticking.
The A’s Jean Luc Chetner made it 8-5 with a power play goal, while Wesley Berg also chipped in, however a shorthanded marker by the Arrows’ Johnson didn’t give Coquitlam much opportunity to close the gap.
Johnson was named player of the game for his four goals and two assist performance, while Challen Rogers received the honour for the Adanacs.
Despite the loss, Coquitlam goalie Peter Dubenski was solid in net, something his coach remarked on after the game.
“We had great goaltending,” Doddridge said. “I have never seen Pete have two bad ones in a row.”
Any hope that the Adanacs would be able to sweep their eastern opponents were dashed Tuesday night, when the club lost to the Arrows 19-5 in Game 3.
The Six Nations Arrows struggled during the first two games, but any signs of rust were shaken off early, as the club dominated all three periods.
In that game, Johnson opened the scoring for the visiting team but Jr. Adanacs captain Wesley Berg quickly responded with a goal and setup a second marker when he fed Eli McLaughlin to make it 2-1.
That would be the last time Coquitlam would hold the lead for the rest of the game.
Waves of Arrows forwards crashed the Adanacs’ end as the team scored seven unanswered goals before McLaughlin broke the streak with Coquitlam’s third goal of the game. Jean Luc Chetner an Tyler Pace also scored for the home team, but it was not enough to quell the dominating Arrows offence.
Six Nations finished up the game with another lengthy goal streak, with Johnson eventually scoring five, while Ian Martin had a hat trick.
Captain Johnny Powless led the game in points with two goals and five assists, while brother Quinn Powless had two goals and two assists.
Both clubs were expected to play Thursday night after The Tri-City News’ deadline. The next game is tonight (Friday, Aug. 22) at the Langley Events Centre at 8 p.m.