Major Midgets earn weekend hockey split


The Pictou County Weeks Major Midgets are making noise.

Pictou County followed a 5-4 loss with a 5-4 overtime triumph on home ice against the two top teams in the Nova Scotia Major Midget Hockey League.

The Major Midgets are preparing to host the South Shore Mustangs next weekend in games at the Pictou County Wellness Centre in an effort to keep moving up the standings. Those games begin Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at noon.

Pictou County narrowly lost to the unbeaten Cape Breton West Islanders on Saturday before pulling out their overtime win against the Cole Harbour Pro Hockey Life Wolfpack.

There was enough excitement for three games on Sunday.
After a scoreless first period, Pictou County entered the third period trailing 3-1 but tied the game on a goal by Kevin Mason with a two-man power play advantage and another goal by Jaden Mason with the Wolfpack down a player.

After Pictou County killed off a penalty of its own, Kevin Mason’s second goal of the game on a low shot sent the Major Midgets ahead 4-3.

The Wolfpack fired eight unanswered shots in an effort to draw even and eventually tied the game on a penalty shot. The goal eventually forced a three-on-three overtime period, but Pictou County wasted little time and scored on its first rush on a goal by Gerald Blackmore.

The Major Midgets were assessed a misconduct penalty after its players emptied the bench to celebrate the goal.

Pictou County head coach Kyle MacLennan praised his team’s fortitude in both weekend games.

“We made some mistakes but if you keep working things come around your way,” he said. “Every day, we’re looking to improve, whether it’s a practice or a game.”

In Saturday’s game, the Islanders led 2-1 after the first period, 3-1 after the second period and 4-1 early in the third period.

Blackmore and Ryan MacLennan scored for Pictou County to narrow the gap to 4-3, while Oliver Schnare followed with a goal after the Isles went ahead 5-3.

Pictou County was outshot 39-30 but outshot the Islanders 17-12 in the third period.

“When we were down 4-1 on Saturday and 3-1 on Sunday, the kids were saying, ‘We’re still OK,’” Kyle MacLennan said. “It was a big win and a big weekend…”

The win on Sunday kept Pictou County in a fifth-place tie in the league standings with the Halifax McDonalds. The Islanders have won eight games to lead the standings with 16 points, while the Wolfpack is second with 13.

After a road game in Dartmouth against the Steele Subaru Major Midgets on Oct. 22, Pictou County will end the month with two interlocking games with teams from P.E.I. with Kensington visiting on Oct. 29 at 8 p.m. and Charlottetown providing the opposition on Oct. 30 starting at noon.

Kevin Mason, with seven goals and six assists, and Jade Mason, with four goals and nine assists, are in a five-way tie for third place with 13 points in the league’s individual scoring race.

Pictou County players Jackson Height, 25, and Oliver Schnare, 18, converge on Cole Harbour opponent as goaltender Andrew MacLeod smothers the puck during their NSMMHL game on Sunday at the Pictou County Wellness Centre. Pictou County won the game 5-4 in overtime to salvage a split of their weekend games. (Goodwin photo)

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