League News


Schedule for opening four games of Championship Series confirmed

The schedule for the opening four games in the Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League Championship Series have been announced and based on records this season, it promises to be a dandy!
Game 1 — Saturday, Mar 30 — At Antigonish — 7:30 p.m.
Game 2 — Sunday March 31st — At Antigonish — 3:00 p.m.
Game 3 — Friday, April 5 — at Bridgewater — 7:30 p.m.
Game 4 — Saturday April 6 — at Bridgewater — 3:00 p.m.
Officials with both clubs are now reviewing options for Games 5, 6 and 7 if and whether they will be necessary in this Best-of-Seven Provincial Championship Series with the winner advancing to the Don Johnson Memorial Cup Atlantic Championship in Mount Pearl, Newfoundland beginning April 23rd.
Both the Jr. Bulldogs and South Shore Lumberjacks had incredible seasons with the Jr. Bulldogs finishing 26-4-2 for 52 points in the regular season and the Lumberjacks at 24-7-1 for 49 points.
Both teams have an arsenal of scoring depth and goaltending is second to none.
The Bulldogs have Will Fitzsimmons who garnered 37 points on 17 golf and 20 assists in the regular season and Sam Grant who had 13 goals and 22 assists for 35 points.  Ethan Twolan selected as the top defenseman in the league for 23-24 registered 8 goals and 22 assists for 30 points.
Meanwhile the Lumberjacks are just as strong offensively with Cohen Westlake registering 41 points on 17 goals and 24 assists in the regular season.  Alec Howie was a close second with 16 goals and 24 assists for 40 points.  Daniel Kline connected for 16 goals and 19 assists for 35 points, Brennan Coleman had 33 points with 14 goals and 19 assists and Aaron Lane was absolutely outstanding on the Lumberjacks blue line leading the League with 27 assists to go along with 7 goals for 34 points while Joe Osborne recorded 16 goals and added 13 assists for 29 points.
Goaltending throughout the regular season was exceptional by both clubs with Adam Tkacz in the Bulldog nets going 14-6, stopping 548 of 599 shots while recording four shut-outs and a 2.57 Goals Against Average and a .915 save percentage.
Number 1 in the South Shore nets all season was Keegan Greencorn who finished with a 16-7 record stopping 711 of 777 shots while recording two shut-outs and a registering a .915 save percentage and a 2.77 Goals Against Average.
Both teams completed the regular season leading the league in goals as the Lumberjacks tallied 158 in 32 games and the Bulldogs 150 but the Bulldogs were a little better defensively allowing only 71 goals compared to the Lumberjacks 100.
The two teams met twice in the regular season back in October and November with the Bulldogs winning both games by scores of 8-3 and 6-2 with the opening game of their two game season-series becoming quite testy with 144 minutes in penalties called including four fighting majors and different misconducts being assessed.
As for the Playoffs, The Jr. Bulldogs won both their opening round series in five games going 8-2-0 while the Lumberjacks are riding exceptionally high having won eight consecutive games to win their two opening round series after losing their first three of the playoffs and being on the brink of elimination against the East Hants Penguins.
As for scoring in the playoffs, the same players from both clubs have kept their strong seasons going.  Will Fitzsimmons has scored 7 goals and 9 assists in the Bulldogs 10 playoff contests while Tully Grant has registered nine points on five goals and four assists.  Ethan Twolan has recorded 2 goals and 9 assists for 11 points.  Alec Howie has been scoring juggernaut for the Lumberjacks with eight goals and eight assists in 11 games while Brennan Coleman has scored five times and added 4 assists for 9 points.  The goal scoring the Lumberjacks have been missing in their incredible run, seemingly showing what a balanced team they have is Cohen Westlake.  Westlake as mentioned recorded 17 goals in the regular season but to date in the 11 playoff games, he has been held scoreless while recoding 7 assists.  Aaron Lane while playing above average defence has witnessed his offense take a little  sputter as he has scored a goal and recorded 2 assists in 11 playoff games compared to the league leading 27 assists he had in the regular season.  Daniel Kline who at once led the league in scoring at the 3/4 mark until an unfortunate suspension has recorded a single goal and 3 assists in 11 games.  Joe Osborne and Nolan Greenlaw have combined for a total of 16 points with seven goals and nine assists.
Defence has been the key for the Lumberjacks as they have allowed only 10 goals against in their past seven playoff games.  South Shore is a team plus 9 having scored 33 goals and allowing 24 in their 11 post-season games while Antigonish is a plus 21 in their 10 games.
As for special teams, the Jr. Bulldogs have scored 9 power-play goals and added a pair of short-handed markers while the Lumberjacks have scored 6 power-play goals.
The Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League Veterans Cup Championship Series should be sensational hockey before overflowing crowds in both arenas with the Lumberjacks having sold out the Lunenburg County Health and Lifestyle Centre in Game 4 while putting crowds of more than 1,000 in other home playoff games.  Saturday night is the opener in Antigonish at 7:30 p.m.
Mar 24, 2024