Playoffs will be a Blast for Real McCoy

NORWOOD – Four goals by TJ Sakaluk and three more by Darryl Smith carried Dundas Real McCoys to a resounding 14-5 victory over Norwood Vipers in the final game of the 2011-12 Allan Cup Hockey League campaign last Sunday (Feb.26) in the Asphode-Norwood Community Centre.

Two nights earlier, Brantford Blast led by Brad Jones, with two goals and an assist, ended the Dundas Real McCoys home-game winning steak at eight games with a 9-5 victory on Kids Night in the JL Grightmire Arena.

Prior to the game, Ontario Hockey Association president Brent Ladds presented Dundas Real McCoys president and general manger Don Robertson with the OHA Chrystal Puck Award for his outstanding contributions to hockey and the association during the 2010-11 season.

“We were brutal last Friday at home in front of our best crowd of the year. We have no idea how it happened, but down 6-0 at the end of the first wasn’t much fun, but I’m sure the boys will ramp it up for the playoffs,” said Robertson.

“Sunday was a no-hitter in Norwood. Both teams had short benches in a game that had no penalties. That won’t happen again this year that’s for sure.”

Dundas finished the season in second place with 15 wins, six losses, four overtime losses and three shootout losses. Brantford came third with a 17-10-0-1 record. Both teams will meet in the first game of the playoffs Friday night (March 2) in the JL Grightmire Arena at 7:45 p.m. In the other semi-final series, first place Whitby Dunlops will play the Orillia Sunrise Toyota Tundras.

Game two of the best-of- seven ACH semi-final playoff series is tentatively scheduled for Sunday (March 4) in the Branford Community Centre at 2 p.m. The remaining games at Dundas are Wednesday, March 7, Sunday, March 11, and Wednesday, March 14. All games will be played at 7:45 p.m.

“This series is one that local hockey fans wait for…the 403 series…and it keeps happening. There is no love lost between these two groups from the ice surface to the top. It’s great that local fans can follow the whole series in arenas that are just minutes apart. The crowds should be good and the hockey even better,” said Robertson.

Cam Watson captured the ACH individual scoring title 34 goals and 29 assists for 63 points in 27 games following his five-point performance (one goal, four assists) Sunday at Norwood. Teammate Brad Kenny with a goal and an assist finished in second spot with 16 goals and 38 assists for 54 points. Ryan Christie completed the season in ninth place in league scoring with 11 goals and 27 assists for 38 points.

“It sure was nice to have Watson and Kenny end up one-two in scoring this year. They made a great commitment to us all season, and we are very proud of them,” said coach Ken Mann.

Also scoring for the McCoys in the final match of the season were Justin Davis and Scott Stafford with two goals each and Jeff White with a single. Will Jones, Ryan Toms, Murray Free, Patrick Sweeney, and Jordan Freeland replied for Norwood.

In addition to Jones, the Blast got single goals last Friday night from Mark Taylor, Greg Bullock, Ryan Healy, Gerald Moriarity, Matt Ruberto, Pat Easter, and Ryan Stephenson. Replying for the Real McCoys were Scott Mifsud with a pair of goals, and single by Mike Amodeo, Watson, and John Neal.