The Nickel City Bantam "AAA" Sons have advanced through to the quarter-finals at the prestigious 2017 Toronto Marlboros "AAA" Holiday Classic, and they can thank a rare quick start to a tournament for that.
The Sons jumped all over the Brampton 45's on Wednesday, blasting their opponents 6-0 as Mitchell Martin (two goals) and Josh Kavanagh (goal + two assists) paved the way.
Cameron Walker, Max McCue and Zacharie Giroux scored one goal apiece, while Patrick Boivin registered the shutout. The lopsided victory proved key after the Sons finished round robin play with a record of 2-1-1, dead even with both the Mississauga Senators and Quinte Red Devils.
Thankfully, the goals for and against tie-breaker was boosted nicely by the Brampton result, allowing the Sons to finish first and earn a playoff matchup with the Windsor Jr Spitfires.
The Nickel City crew had improved to 2-0 thanks to a 2-0 shutout of the Red Devils, with Devon Savignac and Chris Innes handling the scoring, while goaltender Jake Marois followed the lead of Boivin between the pipes, keeping things clean.
Despite dropping a 4-1 decision to the Senators (Savignac scored for the Sons), the locals bounced back to earn a 2-2 draw with the Niagara North Stars, as both teams moved on. Cameron Walker and Ethan Marois accounted for the Nickel City tallies.
Finishing first in Division 3, the Sons battled the Jr Spitfires in their quarter-final encounter, emerging triumphant following a solid 2-0 effort. A two goal performance Brady Smith proved to be the difference offensively, while Jake Marois backstopped coach Chris McInnis' squad with his second shutout of the tournament.
Ironically, it will be the Niagara North Stars who provide the opposition on Friday night, as the teams meet for the second time in less than 24 hours. Also advancing through to the quarter finals are the Toronto Marlboros, Chicago Young Americans, North Central Predators, North York Rangers, Chicago Fury and Gentry Galaxy from Minnesota.