After finishing first overall in the round robin of the 2017 RBC Cup national championships in Cobourg, Ontario, the Ontario Junior Hockey League hosts, the Cobourg Cougars took to the ice on Saturday May 20th in an afternoon matinee against the fourth place British Columbia Hockey League’s Penticton Vees in the first semi – final of the day. Penticon edged the Cougars on day three in overtime in round robin action.
At 11:13 of the middle stanza and on a power play, Nicholas Jones fires the opening goal for the Vees behind Cobourg goaltender Stefano Durante to give Penticton a 1 – 0 lead with helpers from Chris Klack and Taylor Ward. Defenseman Nick Minerva sends pass to Cougar Daniel McKitrick at 15:05 of the second on a power play to pull Cobourg even 1 – 1 with the Vees. Theo Lewis finds the back of Penticon netminder Mathew Robson 11:55 into the final period for the go – ahead goal with Minerva and Spencer Roberts notched the contributors on Lewis’ goal. With 1:06 remaining in the game and the Vees net empty, Roberts cements to Cougars berth to the national championship game with Cobourg’s third of the contest with Lewis adding the assist. Penticton netminder Mathew Robson stopped 25 of 27 in the Vees 3 – 1 loss while Stefano Durante of the Cougars turned away 27 of 28 in the Cougars biggest win to date of the 2016 – 2017 season.
Cobourg defenseman Nick Minerva told the Junior Hockey Network that “we started off slow, but we stuck to what has got us this far and pulled through. All four lines played well and our goalie was outstanding again, as a result we got what we strived for.”
“Being 21 years old and going into my last junior game and this kind of stage I couldn’t be any more thankful and blessed. All these games have meant nothing and the one everyone will remember is tomorrow so we will come together keep doing what we are doing and give everything we have to keep that trophy here in Cobourg” said Minerva.
Cobourg will face the Alberta Junior Hockey League’s Brooks Bandits in the 2017 RBC Cup national championship game on May 21st in a 5:30 (EST) p.m puck drop.
Photo Credit: @murnphoto/hockeycanadaimages.ca