What would the Christmas season be without a hockey tournament you ask? Well we're not sure because the Toronto Marlboros participated in the Toronto Junior Canadiens Cup from December 27th to the 29th.
After having a little break from the hockey rink, the Marlboros were eager to get their skates on and burn off some of that delicious Christmas turkey. With the first snowstorm of the season going full tilt, the team trekked up to Westwood Arena for their first two games against Lambton Sting and the North Central Predators. With two solid wins on day one, the team went home to rest up for day two.
Day two saw the Toronto Marlboros face the Barrie Colts for their first game of the day. The game was quick with both teams vying for the puck. In fact, it was reminiscent of a tennis match. A goal by the Marlies was quickly paid back with a goal by the Colts and this went on for the entire game resulting in a 4-4 tie between the teams. Game two of the day was a little different. Eager to play the high ranking team the Little Caesars North, the Marlboros came out with their game faces on. Down 2 defencemen midway through the second period the team turned their jets on and fired away with a 4-1 win over Little Caesars. Coach Gialedakis hailed the boys as heroes for battling like true warriors. Even shorthanded and exhausted, the team played like champions and went home feeling great about their game.
The semi-final game was a showdown against the hosts of the tournament; the Jr. Canadiens. The Marlboros took a quick 2-0 lead and seemed to have clinched the win. The Canadiens however did not see it that way. They came back strong burying the biscuit in the basket twice resulting in a 2-2 tie. Now time for overtime. With 5 stressful minutes of 4 on 4 the tie remained. Going into the second overtime, now 3 on 3 the Toronto Marlboros sealed the deal with a top shelf goal resulting in a big win and the chance to play in the finals.
The finals were to be played against the top ranked team in Ontario and one that Marlboros had yet to play; the London Junior Knights. The Marlboros were pumped and started the game with a quick goal. Unfortunately, late in the first period, with 2 men in the box, the Knights score two power play goals… One with a 5 on 3 and the other with 5 on 4. The second period saw no scoring but a great deal of action. In the third, after one of many questionable calls by the refs, the Knights were granted a penalty shot resulting in a 3-1 lead. The pressure in the arena was palpable. The Marlboros did not give up, in fact they battled harder as the game went on resulting in a goal late in the third period. Unfortunately it was too little too late and even though they played well, it wasn't reflected in the score. The Knights won the game 3-2.
The team along with their coach were very proud of their performance at the Jr. Canadiens Cup. Another week of rest ahead of them and then it's time to gear up for the 2013 season. Looking forward to seeing you all there!!