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Minor Peewee A
Gloucester Rangers cap Minor Peewee 'A' championship quest with 4-1 win over
Silver 7 White team

By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

The Gloucester Rangers put together back-to-back wins over the Ottawa Silver 7 White team on the weeked to capture the OEMHL Minor Peewee A championship.

The Rangers were down 4-2 in the first to seven points final series before reeling off three straight wins starting with a 2-0 victory over the Silver 7 last Thursday in which Andrew Burke and Jeremy Barrie both scored for Gloucester and goalie Jacob Yeomans picked up the shutout..

With the series tied at four points apiece, Gloucester put themselves squarely in the driver's seat by squeaking out a 2-1 win over the Silver 7 on Saturday. Up six points to four at that point, the Rangers only needed a tie in Sunday's game to win it all.

Rather than play conservatively, the Rangers left nothing up to chance and instead came out flying. Playing on home ice at the Earl Armstrong Arena, they jumped out to a 3-0 first period lead on a goals from Justin Shimizu and helper from Burke and never looked back.

The Silver 7 managed to cut the lead to 3-1 with a goal in the second period, but a goal by Charles Roberge late in the third would kibosh any chance of a miracle comeback on the part the west end team and bring a happy ending to the Rangers' championship quest.

The win is especially noteworthy given the fact that the Rangers had not beaten the Silver 7 White squad heading into the finals. In five regular season games, the Silver 7 were 2-0-3.

For a number of the Rangers, the Minor Peewee A championship is their second OEMHL title in as many years. The core of the team graduated from the Major Atom A team that won the league championship last year.

Head coach Mitch Geerts says the team owes its success to the players willingness to stick to their game plan which calls on the defence to take care of the puck and play responsibly in their own end while the forwards take care of business in their opponent's end. In other words the best defence is a good offence.

"Were a puck possession team and we're a very skilled that works incredibly hard. Today they came out strong and hard, but we stuck with our game and it paid off," Geerts said after the big win.

The main man all season for the Rangers was Tristan Picketts, who scored 29 goals and added 14 assists in 41 games. But in the finals it was the dynamic duo of Philippe Geerts and Andrew Burke who lit up the scoreboard with five goals and nine assists between them in four games. (The stats for Game 5 are not available.)

Yeomans gave up four goals in three games for Gloucester including wins in Games 4 and 6, while his battery mate Colin Murray gave up five goals in three games including wins in Game 1 and 5.

Team roster: Tristan Picketts, Andrew Burke, Philippe Geerts, Mark Belanger, Justin Christensen, Nathan Lowry, Justin Shimizu, Tristan Staff, Charles Roberge, Jeremy Barrie, Art Rambo, Zachary Brant, Justin Gagnon, Antonio Micucci, Cal Wehbe, Colin Murray and Jacob Yeomans. Head Coach Mitch Geerts, Ass't Coach David Picketts, Ass't Coach Wayne Burke, Manager Sylvie Seguin-Brant and Trainer John Staff.

(Posted 11 a.m., March 30)

 

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