PORT HOOD: It was a home-and-home series between the Cape Breton West Islanders and the Pictou Weeks Midgets, but things didn’t break the Islanders’ way in either outing.
The Saturday final in Port Hood was 4-3, and the Sunday final in Pictou was 6-4.
The pair of losses have coach Nick MacNeil less than pleased.
“I give Pictou credit, but we shot ourselves in the foot time-after-time,” MacNeil said. “We came out flying on both Saturday and Sunday, but we came out in the second and third as a different hockey team. You can yell and scream at them as much as you want, but they have to do the work.
“We let off the gas huge in the second period, which is unacceptable,” he said. “I don’t yet know the antidote for them to get out and play a full game, but I really hope they figure it out. We have 14 games left in the season, and it could be a long second half for us.”
On Saturday, it was a three-goal third period that sealed the deal for the Weeks. The Islanders held a two-goal lead after the first, with Dell Welton (from Daniel LeBlanch and Matthew Raike) and Matthew Ellis (from Neil MacLean and Lewis Taylor) scoring. Also scoring for the Islanders was LeBlanc (from Welton and Dylan Chisholm).
Both Ellis and LeBlanc scored on power plays, and the Islanders outshot Pictou 33-26. Kenzie MacPhail was in net.
On Sunday, the Islanders scored three consecutive goals in the first period, Pictou scored four consecutive goals in the second, and Pictou outscored the visitors 2-1 in the third.
Leading the Islanders were Chisholm and Sam Grant, both with three helpers each; Welton, Taylor, Darren Waterman, and Dave Matthews, all with a goal; and Brant Timmons, an assist.
Once again, the Islanders outshot Pictou 36-25. Brandon Connors backstopped the Islanders.
The Islanders have a few away games before they return home on Wednesday, December 19, for a 7 p.m. start against Pictou.
The Islanders sit fifth in their provincial league at 9-12-1.