A dramatic finish to the Minor Midget AAA regular season and a boatload of playoff races highlighted last week’s GTHL action:
Minor Midget AAA
The final week of the Minor Midget AAA regular season wrapped up on Friday, Jan. 9 with the Toronto Titans and Don Mills Flyers in an even split atop the standings.
After dropping their first contest of the week with a 6-0 defeat to the Flyers on Monday, Jan. 5, the Titans closed their schedule with wins over the Markham Majors (3-1) and Toronto Red Wings (4-2) to finish the season at 27-4-2 (56 points).
Needing two points in their finale against the Toronto Marlboros, the Flyers responded with a 3-2 victory to pull even with the Titans and force a one-game playoff to decide first place.
In the tiebreaker on Monday night, Titans defenseman Rob Proner scored his second goal of the game in overtime to play the hero and help his club clinch a first-place finish and the 2014-15 Kraft Cup.
After the Vaughan Kings closed their season with 5-0 and 2-1 wins over the Toronto Young Nationals and Mississauga Reps, respectively, the Young Nationals needed at least a point in their Thursday finale to keep their playoff hopes alive.
A 1-0 victory over the Mississauga Senators did just that – lifting the Young Nationals to a record of 10-19-4 (24 points) to clinch eighth place and avoid a tiebreaker with the Kings.
The dramatic final week of regular-season play has resulted in the following matchups for the first round of the 2015 Scotiabank GTHL Playoffs, which begin tonight (Tuesday, Jan. 13):
(1) Toronto Titans vs. (8) Toronto Young Nationals
Game 1: Tuesday, Jan. 13, 7:10 p.m. at Buckingham Arena
(2) Don Mills Flyers vs. (7) Toronto Red Wings
Game 1: Tuesday, Jan. 13, 9:00 p.m. at Victoria Village
(3) Toronto Jr. Canadiens vs. (6) Mississauga Reps
Game 1: Tuesday, Jan. 13, 9:00 p.m. at Buckingham Arena
(4) Toronto Marlboros vs. (5) Mississauga Rebels
Game 1: Thursday, Jan. 15, 9:15 p.m. at Iceland
Check out the latest rankings for the 2015 OHL Cup.
Minor Peewee A West
The Toronto Wolverines earned a pair of victories over the weekend to inch closer to the final playoff spot in the West.
The club first earned a 1-0 victory over the Duffield Devils before easing their way to a 6-2 win against the Vaughan Rangers. With the four-point weekend, the Wolverines (8-14-7, 23 points) moved within three points of both the Devils (9-12-8, 26 points) and Humber Valley Sharks (9-13-8, 26 points) in the race for the eighth and final playoff spot.
The Downsview Beavers (9-18-5, 23 points) also are three points behind the Devils and Sharks following a 5-2 loss to the Amesbury Attack.
Both the West Mall Lightning (1-0 vs. Humberview Huskies) and Toronto Eagles (4-0 vs. Avalanche) picked up victories over higher-ranked teams to advance their position in the playoff race. The Lightning sits only two points back of the Huskies in fifth place while the Eagles (11-9-7, 29 points) occupy the sixth seed.
The Humber Valley Sharks are officially making a run for the playoffs after picking up a 4-2 win over the third-place Vaughan Rangers on Sunday evening. The Sharks (12-14-4, 28 points) now have points in each of their last three games (2-0-1) and sit two points behind the Humberview Huskies for the final playoff position in the West.
The Huskies (13-13-4, 30 points) earned one point over the weekend following a 1-1 tie with the Mississauga Braves.
The Braves defeated the Toronto Eagles on Saturday to improve to 16-11-2 (34 points) through 29 games. They rank sixth in the division and have played fewer games than every club.
With first place in the standings wrapped up by the Ice Warriors (29-1-1, 59 points), the battle for second place looks bound to go the distance. Both the Etobicoke Canucks (24-6-2, 50 points) and Rangers (22-7-3, 47 points) picked up wins on Monday night to keep pace with only four games remaining. The clubs meet on Monday, Jan. 26 in what could be the second-place clincher.
In a battle between the top East division teams on Monday at Scarborough Gardens, the Ted Reeve Thunder (28-2-1, 57 points) skated to a 5-0 win over the Scarborough Young Bruins (28-1-2, 58 points) to move within one point of the club for first place. Both teams have five games remaining, including one final head-to-head matchup on Tuesday, Jan. 20 at Victoria Village.
North Toronto (16-9-6, 38 points) posted a 1-0-1 record to move within three points of the Toronto Aeros (18-8-5, 41 points) for third place in the division. North Toronto first defeated the Toronto Shamrocks 8-3 before tying the Goulding Park Rangers 3-3.
The Aeros dropped a 4-2 decision to the Leaside Flames in their lone weekend contest. With their victory, the Flames (9-20-3, 21 points) moved to within five points of the final playoff spot with four games left on their schedule.
Other finals from Bantam AA action:
Toronto Royals 7, Toronto Eagles 0
Mississauga Jets 4, Streetsville Tigers 1
Mississauga Terriers 2, Toronto Royals 1
Ice Warriors 4, Streetsville Tigers 0
Though first place is out of reach for the Toronto Marlboros, the club is proving their worth in the top tier of the standings. The Marlboros defeated the top-ranked Toronto Jr. Canadiens with a 3-1 decision on Saturday before outlasting the Toronto Red Wings 8-5 on Monday night.
With only four games left on their schedule, the Marlboros (21-8-0, 42 points) can finish as high as third place. At 20-5-1 (41 points), the Don Mills Flyers – who won their lone weekend contest and have a whopping seven games remaining – are the only club that can challenge the Marlboros for that position.
The Toronto Young Nationals defeated the Toronto Titans 4-3 on Sunday afternoon to pull even with the club – in terms of points – for the final playoff position. Both squads have 15 points but the Titans have three games in hand.
The Mississauga Senators are doing their best to move up the standings after picking up four points from Saturday to Monday. The Senators (13-11-3, 9 points) defeated both the Titans (2-1) and Vaughan Kings (6-1) to leapfrog the Mississauga Reps (13-13-2, 28 points) into sixth place.
The Reps split their weekend games with a 2-1 win over the Red Wings and 3-0 loss to the Flyers.
Other finals from Atom AAA action:
North York Rangers 6, Vaughan Kings 4
Mississauga Rebels 10, Toronto Young Nationals 0
Toronto Jr. Canadiens 8, North York Rangers 0
Visit our Games Centre page for all the scores and standings.