Valley Maple Leafs register first win, trail playoff series 2-1

Published on March 18, 2017

Chris 'Sticks' Arnold rushed out onto the ice following the Leafs' win March 17 to congratulate goaltender Christopher Clokie on an outstanding game.

©Carole Morris-Underhill

WINDSOR, N.S. — Before their biggest audience this season, the Valley Maple Leafs secured a win to guarantee the Fred Fox Division playoff series will go to at least five games.

Trailing the Best of Seven series with the Liverpool Privateers by two games, the Leafs managed to eke out a 2-1 win March 17.

All of the scoring was done in the first period, with the Privateers' Stone Harnish being the only player to best Christopher Clokie in nets.

Mitchell Baker tries to get past the Valley Maple Leafs' defence.
Carole Morris-Underhill

Team captain Tyler Young tied the game up for the Leafs, before Falmouth native Bailey Peach, an affiliated player with a Cole Harbour AAA midget team, scored what would be the game-winning goal.

“In this game, Clokie kept us in it. We tightened up defensively and we found a way to win,” said Brett Fletcher, an assistant coach with the Leafs, following the game.

“Clokie stood on his head; he kept his composure, which is key. The young call-up from midget, Griffin Abbot, he played really well, held his own on defense, played very steady.”

Fletcher said this is a playoff series where either team could come out on top.

“It's kind of what happened last year. We were down two games in this (same) series against Sackville,” said Fletcher.

Affiliated player Bailey Peach, No. 9, of Falmouth, is congratulated by his teammates Sean Anderson and Brody McCarron on scoring the Leafs' second goal of the evening.

©Carole Morris-Underhill

Team captain Tyler Young took the opening face off March 17.

©Carole Morris-Underhill

Stone Harnish was the lone Liverpool Privateer to best Christopher Clokie during the Leafs' 2-1 win.
Carole Morris-Underhill

In 2016, the Leafs pulled off a come-from-behind win to defeat the Blazers to take the Fred Fox Division title, then defeated the Glace Bay Junior Miners to win the Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League title. They went on to be crowned the Maritime champions.

Fletcher said the team is focused on taking it one game at a time.

The remainder of the playoff series will be held in short order.

Game 4 is in Liverpool March 19 at 7:15 p.m., Game 5 is back in Windsor on March 21 at 7:30 p.m. If Game 6 is required, it will be held March 22 in Liverpool, and should the series go to Game 7, it would be held in Windsor March 24 at 7:30 p.m.

“If the boys want to win and if they come to play, we can be right back in this and tie the series up,” said Fletcher.

There were a variety of scoring chances in the second and third periods March 17 but neither team could capitalize on them.

©Carole Morris-Underhill

Derek Nelson wheels up the ice in hopes of scoring against the Valley Maple Leafs.

©Carole Morris-Underhill