Defenceman Jacob Arsenault has assumed an extra role with the Summerside D. Alex MacDonald Ford Western Capitals.
“Before the games, the same guy announces the starting lineup until we lose, so we have noticed Jacob Arsenault has been doing it for a while,” said Capitals forward Josh MacDonald of Cornwall. “We don’t mind and he does a good job.”
Arsenault will keep on making the announcement after the Caps topped the Campbellton Tigers 6-2 on Saturday night to extend their winning streak to 12.
Although the Capitals are one of the hottest teams in the country – and sport a Maritime Junior Hockey League-leading record of 20-3-0 (won-lost-overtime losses) – the focus remains on the big picture.
“We are not paying any attention to (the winning streak) at all,” said Capitals head coach Billy McGuigan. “As a staff, we don’t talk about it and the players don’t talk about it.
“We are just here trying to win hockey games nightly and trying to win every game.”
The Capitals, the ninth-ranked team in the Canadian Junior Hockey League last week, have opened up an eight-point lead over the Eastlink South Division-leading South Shore Lumberjacks (15-7-2) and a 10-point bulge over the Edmundston Blizzard (14-6-2) in the Eastlink North Division.
“We like to take it one game at a time,” said MacDonald, who contributed a goal, an assist and was named the game’s third star. “We know we are rolling, but we are just focused on getting wins.
“But even more important is making sure we learn our lessons so we can keep building throughout the season. We don’t want to peak too early, but we still feel we are getting better every night. As long as we do that we will keep the wins coming.”
Before 1,187 fans at Eastlink Arena, Kallum Muirhead had a goal and three assists while linemate Brodie MacArthur scored twice and added a helper to pace the Caps offensively. Colby MacArthur and Zach Biggar also scored.
Brodie MacArthur (25-22) and Muirhead (19-28) each have 47 points and are tied for the lead atop the league scoring race.
After the Caps built a 2-0 lead, the Tigers struck for two goals 28 seconds apart to tie the game at 12:19. Biggar’s power-play goal 21 seconds later gave the Caps a 3-2 lead and Muirhead’s 19th tally of the year at 14:33 restored the Caps’ two-goal cushion.
“We got off to a hot start like we wanted to and we had a little lapse,” assessed MacDonald. “We lost our grit for a couple of minutes there, but we got right back on the bus.”
The third period featured two-spirited bouts as Chandler Wood, an affiliated player from the Island Junior Hockey League’s Western Red Wings, battled Campbellton’s Ty Lawrence and Summerside rookie Nick Reeves dropped the gloves with Riley Bezeau.
“You can’t say enough for Chandler Wood,” said McGuigan. “Chandler is a character kid, he’s worked for me at Tenacity (hockey school) and he’s a character person.
“One of our players kind of got hit dirty and if he’s going to be on the ice he’s going to take care of business and that's what he went in to do. It was great for our team and he had some meaningful shifts and I thought he played well.
“There was an alternation that happened last game with Brodie MacArthur and the Bezeau kid. That wasn’t on our mind, as we were trying to get the two points, but Nick wanted to get some redemption. They are two young guys who stepped up and fought.
“It was a good battle and Nick Reeves did a good job and he had a great game.”
- Click here for early story on Western Capitals-Campbellton Tigers game:
- Click here for early story on Western Capitals-Grand Falls game Thursday night:
- Click here for updated story on Western Capitals-Grand Falls game Thursday night:
- Click here for story on Western Capitals' Isaac Wilson seeing playing time in QMJHL: