Some players go through their entire junior hockey careers without even coming close to contending for a championship.
However, former Summerside Western Capitals defenceman Spencer MacDonald of Stratford has an opportunity to win his third title in four years. MacDonald is a member of this year’s edition of the Saint John Sea Dogs, who are looking for back-to-back Quebec Major Junior Hockey League titles.
“It’s pretty exciting,” said the five-foot-11 and 185-pound MacDonald in a recent phone interview.
After playing three seasons in the MHL (Maritime Junior Hockey League) and winning two Kent Cups with the Capitals in 2008-09 and 2010-11, the 19-year-old MacDonald spent the entire 2011-12 season with the Sea Dogs.
“It’s been good and I’ve enjoyed it (with the Sea Dogs),” said the left-shooting MacDonald. “It was nice to get away and try a new level.”
Saint John took a 3-0 lead over Rimouski after beating the Oceanic 6-4 Wednesday night in the President’s Cup final in Rimouski, Que.
“It’s going to be a challenge,” said MacDonald. “Any time you go to Quebec, you know it’s going to be tough.
“Rimouski is a tough rink to play in, and we’ll have to be ready to play our game.”
MacDonald didn’t enter the season as an unfamiliar face to the Sea Dogs. He was called up to the Sea Dogs as an affiliated player following the Caps’ playoff run last season, and was with the team for its run to the Memorial Cup championship. That experience, MacDonald said, proved to be invaluable.
“Just seeing the work ethic at this level, and how all the players went about their business,” said MacDonald, who appeared in one game Memorial Cup game.
This season, MacDonald had 10 points, including three goals, and 65 penalty minutes in 63 regular-season games.
“Any time you go up a level there are adjustments,” said MacDonald, who has one year of junior eligibility remaining. “The biggest adjustments have been the speed and the size of the players.”
In his three full seasons with the Caps, MacDonald appeared in 125 regular-season games and had 51 points, including 10 goals, and 229 penalty minutes. His playoff resumé reads 36 games played, 12 points, including three goals, and 67 penalty minutes.