Estevan, Sask. – The Summerside Western Capitals opened their 2022 Centennial Cup schedule with a 4-1 victory over the Soo Thunderbirds on Friday. As it was for Summerside throughout the season and the Canadian Tire Cup Playoffs, special teams played a significant factor as the team went 3 for 5 on the powerplay.
Summerside killed off a four-minute minor penalty for kneeing just 62 seconds into the game. Sid McNeill opened the scoring at 12:09 of the 1st period. The Thunderbirds tied the game at 18:44, but the even score was short lived as Marc Richard restored the lead for the Western Capitals 29 seconds later.
The MHL champions started the 2nd period on the powerplay after a penalty against the Soo before the end of the 1st, building a two-goal lead as Jacob Stewart converted a goal at 1:30 of the middle frame. Summerside went back to the powerplay less than two minutes later and then built a 4-1 lead with a goal on the man advantage from Josh MacDonald.
Felix-Anthony Ethier saved 13 of 14 shots for the win, while Summerside totalled 44 shots on Thunderbirds goaltender Noah Zeppa. Offensively, Josh MacDonald had a goal and two assists, while Colby MacArthur and Ed McNeill each had two assists for Summerside.
The Western Capitals now prepare for their second game of the Centennial Cup at 7 p.m. Atlantic on Sunday as they face the Dauphin Kings of the MJHL. Watch all games in the tournament and access information on the schedule and statistics on Hockey Canada’s website.