The Yarmouth Mariners rallied from a two-goal deficit four times to force overtime, where Connor Peveril scored to finish off an incredible 7-6 win over the Campbellton Tigers and win the 2018-19 Canadian Tire Cup Final in four straight games.
The Mariners hit the ice Friday night at the Campbellton Memorial Civic Centre with a 3-0 series lead, looking to clinch their first Maritime Junior Hockey League championship since the 2007-08 season. The Tigers wanted to force a Game 5 on Sunday afternoon in Campbellton. Early in the first period, a hit from Campbellton’s Dylan Coffey forced a turnover in Yarmouth’s zone. The puck rolled away from him to a wide open Charles-William Gagne. Tyler Caseley made the first save, but Gagne buried the second shot at 5:58 to give the Tigers just their second lead of the series. Campbellton kept the pressure on, with Caseley forced to make a key save just a few minutes later off a shot from Joel Walker to keep the deficit at 1-0.
After penalties to the Mariners just 67 seconds apart the Tigers had a glorious opportunity with a 5-on-3 to not only notch their first powerplay goal of the series but also build on their lead. As Campbellton worked the puck around the zone, a pass from down low by Coleton Perry back to the point allowed Pierre-Luc Lurette to step into a shot which beat Caseley for a 2-0 Tigers lead at 15:12. The Mariners would get one back before the period was out as a late penalty against the Tigers would put Yarmouth on the powerplay. Cade Neilsen wired a shot from the high slot past a screened Tristan Gray to cut the lead to 2-1 with just 28 seconds left in the period.
In the 2nd period, a faceoff win by Campbellton sent the puck back to the point. Lurette broke his stick on a shot attempt, but the puck rolled to Antoine Gauthier. The Tigers forward took a shot from the slot which was saved by Caseley, but Matt Warner was on the doorstep to send the puck into the net at 7:21 and give Campbellton a 3-1 lead.
Just a few minutes later, Zachery Bennett carried the puck into the Tigers end on a 3-on-1 break for Yarmouth and beat Gray top corner, above the Campbellton netminder’s glove, to cut the lead to 3-2 at 10:40. Off the ensuing faceoff, Lurette skated into the offensive zone, went to the top of the faceoff and threw a shot on goal that found its way by Caseley. The goal came just 11 seconds after Bennett’s marker, and the score went to 4-2 in favour of Campbellton.
Yarmouth, however, would tie things up before the period was out. Brent Broaders skated out from the corner and went straight to the net, flipping the puck up and over Gray from a sharp angle in close to make it 4-3 at 12:12. Then after Jared Janke had cleared the puck off the Campbellton goalline, Yarmouth regained possession and worked the puck down low. A pass out in front found Andrew Martell whose goal tied the game at 4 at 14:45. This after there were only nine total goals scored in Games 1-3.
Campbellton would regain the lead early in the 3rd period as they went in on the attack three-wide. Dawson Stairs carried the puck over the Yarmouth blueline, passed over to Pascal Valcourt in the slot, who made a backhanded feed to Kyle Petten who beat Caseley at 4:04. The Tigers would regain their two-goal lead at 10:46 as a shot from the point by Pier-Olivier Michaud would be tipped by Coffey and into the net for a 6-4 lead. Yarmouth wasn’t finished, as Logan Timmons was left alone in the slot and cut the Campbellton lead back to 6-5 at 16:20. With the goaltender pulled, Yarmouth worked the puck around to the left of Gray where Timmons picked up his second goal of the period with a shot near the faceoff dot at 18:56 to tie things at 6 and send the game to overtime.
Warner had a chance early in the extra frame for the Tigers but rang the puck off the post. Shortly thereafter, Connor Peveril picked up a loose puck and was able to get in on goal, beating Gray at 4:40 to win the game and crown the Yarmouth Mariners as the 2018-19 Canadian Tire Cup champions.
Matt Barron was named Playoff MVP. His 17 total points were tied for the league lead with teammate Martell, while Barron’s 11 assists were second only to teammates Brett Crossley and Noah McMullin. A consistent threat throughout the Canadian Tire Cup Playoffs, Barron was held off the scoresheet just twice in 14 games.
The Yarmouth Mariners now advance to the 2019 Fred Page Cup in Amherst, which runs from May 1st to 5th. They join the host Ramblers, as well as the yet-to-be-determined league winners in the CCHL and LHJQ.