By Karla Kelly FOR THE DIGBY COURIER NovaNewsNow.com
The Clare Peewee B hockey team brought home silver from the 37th annual Shearwater East Dartmouth Minor Hockey Association (SEDMHA) tournament.
The Halifax Hawks edged out the Clare team 3-2 in the Accord Division championship final held at the Forum on April 6.
Alex Dugas scored both goals for Clare and was assisted by Miguel Dugas on the first and Nathan Tufts and Andre Melanson on the second.
Coach Eric Saulnier said the team put in a good effort in the championship game. They pulled their goalie, Yves Thimot, in the final minute of play they could not get the equalizer.
Clare had a 3-2 record for the tournament. They started with a 3-2 overtime win against Dartmouth on Thursday, April 3.
“It was a nail biter,” said Saulnier. “Zach LeBlanc and Andre Melanson scored in regulation play and Miguel Dugas gave us the win.”
Zach LeBlanc scored the lone Clare goal as the team fell 5-1 against Cole Harbour in their second game on Friday.
All the teams began in the Odyssey Division and those winning their first two games remained in that division, teams who went 1-1 dropped to the Accord Division and the teams who lost their first two games continued their play in the Civic Division explained Saulnier.
“We dropped to the Accord Division after Friday’s loss but won our next two games advancing the team to the championship final,” said Saulnier.
Clare defeated Kent Sud of Shediac, New Brunswick 6-4 on Saturday morning. Andre Melanson scored twice for Clare while Nicholas LeBlanc, Jacques Saulnier, Jean-Luc Comeau and Miguel Dugas netted one apiece.
Andre Melanson had a hat trick in Clare’s 6-1 win over Bedford in their Saturday afternoon match and Simon Muise, Alex Dugas and Alain Theriault added one goal each.
Andre Melanson was the top player for Clare finishing the tournament with seven points, six goals and one assist in five games which placed him second in the Peewee B standings for the tournament.
Saulnier said his team went to SEDMHA to play hockey and have fun.
“With the season we’d had I expected the boys to do well at SEDMHA but I don’t think any of us expected to be in the championship game,” he said. “I was really proud of my boys. They were all excited and it was a great way to finish the season.”
Over 270 teams from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland participated in the four day SEDMHA Honda Minor Hockey Tournament which is considered one of the largest minor hockey tournaments in North America.