Divisional Finals in any sport are exciting.
Getting there ranks right up there, as well. At this time in the MHL, there are four teams standing, each with the same goal.
In the Eastlink North Division, the Summerside Capitals and Fredericton Red Wings are doing battle. After two games, the Capitals have established a firm lead. Game Three goes Thursday in Fredericton.
In the South, the Truro Bearcats and Valley Wildcats have picked up from where they left off in regular season play.
Over the course of the season, they’ve played five times, with Truro having the edge. They contested third and fourth spot all the way.
After a pair of Round Two games, they’re dead even. Really, was there any doubt this is the way things would play out.
In the first game, the Bearcats had jump and lived off their forecheck. Truro got the goals they wanted but the Wildest response was quick.
Once the visitors got the lead, it appeared panic may have come into the picture. The Wildest controlled things from that point on.
It clearly wasn’t the conclusion the Bearcats sought; however, they had to live with their effort.
The mission going to Valley Sunday was twofold: get back to their song sheet and regain their home advantage with the road win.
The Bearcats accomplished both, but it wasn’t without challenge.
Truro took a two-goal lead into the third period but saw it disappear five minutes in. They regained the lead midway through, riding it to victory.
The promise of an exciting playoff run is very much alive. The compete level is high, and the goaltending is strong, both good indicators.
Familiarity can build contempt. Expect physicality to expand as each seeks an edge. It’s already turned nasty.
The series continues Tuesday in Truro, followed by a Thursday game in Berwick. Game Five is back in Truro Saturday.
The “if necessary games” are set for Monday in Valley and in Truro Wednesday.
The action will be intense, witness it.