The Charlottetown Brighton Construction Abbies started on fire on Sunday afternoon.
Jack Miller and Alex Young scored two minutes into the midget AAA final with the Pownal Taco Boyz Red Devils at the MacLauchlan Arena. They went on to claim the title with a 3-1 victory at the 41st annual Source for Sports Spud Minor Hockey Tournament.
“Huge start, that’s what got us going,” Miller said. “The coaches let us know this is the Spud tournament, we have to wake up here and get going.”
The Charlottetown Minor Hockey Association hosted the tournament, which attracted 71 teams.
“It’s our tournament. We really wanted to come out flying,” said Abbies head coach Jeffrey MacDonald.
“It’s a lot of hockey, seven games in four days. We kind of talked about it wasn’t going to be skill that was going to win the tournament, it was going to be will.”
That was on display with about three minutes to play when Miller blocked three or four shots to help maintain the two-goal lead.
“I was just trying to help out the team,” said Miller, the team’s game MVP. “It was a good feeling, getting the bench going, (but) I was just trying to do my part.”
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Ryan May gave Charlottetown a 3-0 lead when he potted a rebound with 1:02 left in the first period, moments after an Abbies power play ended.
Marc Cummiskey cut the lead to two when he roofed a pass from Barrington Duffy with six seconds left in the period.
MacDonald said the coaching staff stressed during the first intermission to stay the course and play a strong 15-minute second period.
“We talked about the 14:52 seconds that went very well, not the eight seconds that didn't go our way,” he said.
The second and third periods were scoreless, but not due to a lack of chances.
Abbies goalie Connor Campbell and Red Devils netminder Colby Landrigan rose to the challenge each time they were tested.
Early in the third period the Abbies were assessed a four-minute penalty. MacDonald said being able to kill the infraction provided them a spark and swung momentum back in their direction.
Patrick Young, Tyler Hashmi, Alex Hall and Kyle Doucette each had assists during the first period for the Abbies.
The Red Devils lead the P.E.I. Midget AAA Hockey League by three points over the Abbies with a game in hand. Western is only four points back of first place while Summerside and Mid-Isle have 31 and 28 points, respectively, and have played two fewer games than the league leaders.
“It’s one of those leagues this year where you could win the whole thing or be out in the first round,” MacDonald said, noting he hopes it was the former.
A look at the championship finals of the 41st annual Source for Sports Spud Minor Hockey Tournament.
Pownal Red Devils Team One 6 Pownal Red Devils Team Two 3
Sherwood Falcons 2 Halifax Hawks 1
East Hants Penguins 3 Halifax Hawks 2
Eastern Express 3 The Senators 2
Charlottetown Abbies 3 Pownal Red Devils 1