2017/18 Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs Season Preview

Minor Midget Record: 17-13-3 (5th Place)

Minor Midget Result: Lost in quarter-finals to Cambridge in 3 games

Major Bantam Record: 14-15-3 (6th Place)

Major Bantam Result: Lost in quarter-finals to Sun County in 3 games

For the first time in a long while, it will be a new coaching staff behind the bench for the Minor Midget Chiefs. The new staff is tasked with maintaining the history of competitive teams over the past few years.

Last year’s Minor Midget squad was one of the most underrated teams in the Alliance. While the season began with an equal amount of wins and losses, it was in late October that the team really turned on the gas and went on a serious run that included them being the first team to defeat the dominant London Jr. Knights. Elgin got great contributions from Navrin Mutter up front, Mark Woolley on the back end and from Jake Weston wherever he played that game. After a disappointing first round showing against Cambridge, the Chiefs went on to the consolation finals, falling to Sun County in five games.
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Series Preview: (4) Cambridge Hawks vs. (5) Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs

In sports history, the playoff battle between the fourth and fifth seeds has always been a tight one. When it comes to the Alliance this season, I full expect that trend to continue.

The Cambridge Hawks and Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs are two fairly similar clubs. They have forwards who can light up the scoresheet on occasion, a defense that is led by an offensively minded player and solid goaltending on the back end. The Chiefs and Hawks played three games this season, but two of those were within the first month of the season. In those two games, each team came away with a victory. In their latest meeting, the Hawks sprung out to a quick lead but Elgin battled back and the two ended with a tie in a very physical contest.
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2016/17 Minor Midget Rankings (Week 7)

Although the last couple of weeks have been slow when it comes to the Alliance regular season, the next week will be super busy as the league winds down for the holiday season.

Even though season play does wrap up for the holidays, that doesn’t mean these teams and players will get some time for rest and relaxation. The majority of the Alliance teams will be heading down for the Toronto Marlies Holiday Classic, one of the top tournaments of the season.

While the tournament won’t have any impact on the rankings, the slow period does give some time for other project. Most importantly, look out for the Alliance Scout Top 25 player rankings to be released in the final week of December. The initial list will then be updated in February and a final ranking released just prior to the OHL Draft in April.

Housekeeping out of the way, here are the latest and greatest team rankings.
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Alliance All-Star Rosters Released

Coming up this weekend, Waterloo will host yet another Alliance All-Star weekend. The event, which showcases players from Bantam to Midget, is also the beginning of the selection process for the Alliance OHL Gold Cup team as well as the first viewing for some looking to represent Team Canada next year at the U16 tournament.

68 Minor Midget players were selected as part of the four team mini tournament that occurs throughout the weekend. 36 forwards, 24 defenseman and 8 goalies in total will make the trek.

Here are the full team rosters.

Team Blue:

G – Corson Marit (Kitchener)

G – Lewis Boulton (London)

D – Stefan Dobrich (Sun County)

D – Mason Howard (London)

D – Stefan Panzalovic (Sun County)

D – Dylan Schives (Chatham-Kent)

D – Michael Van Loon (Elgin-Middlesex)

D – Gavin Wood (Waterloo)

F – David Anderson (Cambridge)

F – Cal Christner (Waterloo)

F – Stephane Crevier (Sun County)

F – Nolan Degurse (Lambton)

F – Luke Drewitt (London)

F – Tyson Hillier (Waterloo)

F – T.J. Hughes (Hamilton)

F – Jakob Marche (Elgin-Middlesex)

F – Keean Washkurak (Waterloo)
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Whitby Silver Stick Day Two Recap

It was an early Friday morning for Day Two of the Whitby Silver Stick tournament. The Alliance teams got into action at around 8am and there was lots to take in. By the end of the 2nd day of action, three out of the five Alliance teams were still alive for a spot in the quarter-finals. Not only that, but two teams still have a shot at winning their divisions with one being a bit of a surprise based on how the season had played out to this point.

Sun County Comes Up Big In Tournament Opener

In their first game of the tournament, Sun County came out blazing against a tough Soutern Tier team. The Panthers started out the game more shorthanded then they were expecting. With Josh DiCarlo out for the tournament, Sun County began the game without leading scorer Stephane Crevier as he appeared to have an equipment issue.

Without Crevier, the Panthers were still able to strike first thanks to Hunter Hutchins banging home the loose puck in front of the net. Crevier returned to work a Panther powerplay when the Admirals turned it around a scored a shorthanded goal on a nice breakaway, sliding it underneath and outstretch Aidan Pitre.

Prior to the flood, 02 born Zane Dalpe capitalized on another scramble in front of the Admirals net to give Sun County another lead, this time 2-1 this lead would hold until the flood.

Starting the third period off strong, Marcus Joughin, probably the Panthers strongest player in this game, put Sun County up 3-1 and they never looked back. An empty netter gave Sun County a 4-1 win and their first win of the tournament. Joughin was big in this game along with Everett Parent. Aidan Pitre, would is getting his work in this weekend, had another great game for the Panthers.
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Game Report: Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs at Waterloo Wolves (Oct. 29)

The Saturday night home game has become a bit of a tradition at RIM Park. Waterloo consistently takes the ice at 7pm and has been quite successful on their home ice. The Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs were having none of that as they walked into the arena and beat Waterloo in nearly every facet of the 50 minutes they played.

The Chiefs came into this game winning their past two games after a deflating defeat at the hands of the London Jr. Knights. They were sitting in the middle of the standings looking up at some solid teams despite some huge wins on the season. The Chiefs are the only team to hand London a loss this season.

The Wolves had won five in a row going into Saturday night and were unbeaten in their past seven. Waterloo was cruising and asserting themselves as a top team, which has been the trend over the past few seasons.
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Alliance Showcase Day 2 Roundup

Good news! I barely saw any nets come loose causing multiple stoppages in the play. Aside from the quality of the games on the ice, the biggest positive to take away from the second day at the Alliance Showcase.

Chatham-Kent speeds past host Huron-Perth

In the opening game of the morning, the Chatham-Kent Cyclones continued their strong play this weekend with a 2-0 shutout win over host Huron-Perth. While not complete domination, the Lakers were hard pressed to get any good scoring chances instead attempting long shots on net and crashing for the rebounds.

The Cyclones showed that they will be a handful for teams that don’t possess to speed and size that is currently in the Chatham-Kent lineup. Lucas Fancy was one forward who stood out for me this morning. Small in size, he makes up for it by making quick decisions and is one of the leaders on the ice. Reminds me a bit of Sean Kawalec from last year’s Kitchener squad. Along with Fancy, forwards Evan Wells and Cole Mackinnon were strong in the win. Nolan Dekoning picked up the shutout, his first win of the season.
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2016/17 Huron-Perth Lakers Season Preview

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2015/16 Minor Midget Record: 18-13-2 (5th Place)

2015/16 Minor Midget Final Result: Lost in 3 to Kitchener in Quarter-Finals

2015/16 Major Bantam Record: 8-16-6 (8th Place)

2015/16 Major Bantam Final Result: Lost in 2 to Brantford in Preliminary Round

After a year where injuries and off ice difficulties proved too much to overcome, the new incarnation of the Huron-Perth Lakers will hope success is on the menu this season.

The 2015/16 season for the Minor Midget Lakers could not have started any better. They were undefeated going into the Showcase tournament and continued to impress during the tournament. They were on top of the standings until injuries to top forwards Owen Gilhula and Brady Hinz halted their momentum. A coaching change late in the season didn’t help things and with Gilhula still out of action, the Lakers were swept by Kitchener in the quarter-finals. If healthy for the season, the Lakers were a legitimate contender to win the Alliance.

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2016/17 Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs Season Preview

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2015/16 Minor Midget Record: 21-9-3 (3rd Place)

2015/16 Final Result: Lost in 4 to Windsor in Quarter-Finals

2015/16 Major Bantam Record: 14-14-2 (5th Place)

2015/16 Final Result: Lost in 7 to Sun County in Quarter-Finals

The Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs have been a staple atop the Minor Midget standings for quite some time now and with some added defensive strengths added over the off season, look for the Chiefs to once again be in the upper half of the standings.

The Minor Midget Chiefs of last year didn’t get off to the greatest start to the season. Some may recall some games from the Showcase where Elgin-Middlesex didn’t quite have it all together at that point. That was early though and things changed quite rapidly for the Chiefs. When forwards Jake Murray, Aidan Reid and Wes Dobbin finally got things going, the Chiefs were without a doubt a top five team in the league. While their season ended early against an under rated Windsor team, Elgin was still a team not many wanted to play against.

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