Digby's high school hockey team failed to qualify for provincials this weekend.
The Digby Regional High School Mariners placed third in the regional tournament held at the Digby rink Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, March 1, 3 and 4.
Par-En-Bas of Argyle, who were already slated to host provincials and Bridgewater will represent the Western region.
Digby could still make provincials via a backdoor game against the yet-to-be-determined fourth place team from the Highland region (Cape Breton). The Mariners' manager Troy Connell says because that game would be played over March Break and several of his team players will be away, he isn't yet sure if they will make the trip.
The Mariners started off the tournament with two solid wins: a 6-5 victory over the eventual gold medal team and a 5-0 thrashing of Liverpool. Liverpool however withdrew from the tournament after that, their second loss, and Digby lost the points and goals associated with that win.
Mariners captain Tanner Robinson had four goals in the first game against Par-En-Bas and only two minor penalties. Jajie Aluku scored Digby's first two goals in both the Par-En-Bas and Liverpool games. Krista Eaton was in nets for the shutout.
The tide turned for the Mariners on Saturday when they lost to Bridgewater Saturday 8-2. Digby had been ahead 2-1 until the second when Tanner Robinson was ejected for too many (5) minor penalties.
Digby and Par-En-Bas met again in the semis Saturday night. Argyle jumped out ahead by two in the first, and after that every time Digby scored Par-En-Bas answered.
Par-En-Bas had stretched their lead to 5-2 early in the second before the Mariners came all the way back to 5-4. Robinson had two goals and assisted on the other two. The fourth goal showed just what the Digby captain is capable of; he picked up a loose puck out of a scramble, skated by the whole Argyle team and deked a defender and the goalie.
Digby looked headed to the second break with all the momentum but Par-En-Bas snuck one in with three second left.
At the resulting faceoff, with zero seconds left in the second, Robinson took a senseless penalty. He crosschecked his opponent at centre ice right in front of the linesman, earning his third stick infraction and a game expulsion.
The third period was all penalties-five against Digby and three against Par-En-Bas. Final score 9-4.
Digby's Mark Amero stopped 36 shots. Logan Cottreau stopped 19 for Par-En-Bas.
School cancellations Friday due to the snow storm the night before meant all of Friday games had to be rescheduled.