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Friends Getson, Balmas begin final season playing against each other

Keith Getson, left, and Mitchell Balmas are about to begin their fifth and final season of junior hockey.
Keith Getson, left, and Mitchell Balmas are about to begin their fifth and final season of junior hockey. - QMJHL

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. – They broke in together and tonight they’ll start their final season of junior hockey playing against each other.

Charlottetown Islanders centre Keith Getson and Cape Breton Screaming Eagles forward Mitchell Balmas started with the Isles as 16-year-olds. Fast-forward four years and they are both overage forwards in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

The Nova Scotians played 2 ½ seasons together before Balmas was dealt to Gatineau as part of the package to acquire Alex Dostie. He played a season with the Olympiques before being traded to Acadie-Bathurst and helped the Titan win a Memorial Cup last season. At the draft in June, the Sydney native was sent to the Screaming Eagles.

“Me and Mitch are really close,” Getson said. “It’s nice to see him back in his hometown now to finish off his junior career. I’m really excited to play him and excited to get this season going.”

The Islanders host the Screaming Eagles at 7:30 p.m. at the Eastlink Centre.

Getson said there wouldn’t be much talking to his buddy during the game.

“Mitch is a pretty good goal-scorer, so basically all the chirping I want to do is kind of shut him down and have zeros along the scoresheet,” he said.

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