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GTHL Playoff Preview: Young Nationals (1) vs Jr. Canadiens (8)

FullSizeRenderAfter an thrilling conclusion to a competitive regular season, it’s time to turn our attention to the postseason as the GTHL is a talented league with plenty of contenders vying for the Scotiabank Championship and potential berths into the coveted OHL Cup.

 

Our team will be previewing each series and providing information on their regular season matchups, keys to success and players to watch throughout the series. We kick off this special series with the Toronto Nationals (1) vs. Toronto Jr. Canadiens (8).

GTHL Quarterfinals:

1. Toronto Nationals

Players to Watch: Brandon Coe F, Mason Primeau F, Ethan Keppen F, Brendan Bowie F, Markus Paterson F, Jordan Power D, Robert Calisti D, Michael Palandra D, Zach Roy G

 

8. Toronto Jr. Canadiens

Players to Watch: Cody Morgan F, Ryan Howe F, Brendan Hoffman F, Justin Randhawa F, Brodie McDougall F, Grant Munden F, Justin Law-Cobb F, Matthew Hill D, Cole Leal D, Matthew Yau D, Evan Tanos D, Joseph Howe G

 

Regular Season: Nationals 3-0-0

Monday, October 17: Jr. Canadiens 1 at Nationals 2

Tuesday, November 29: Nationals 1 at Jr. Canadiens 0

Tuesday, January 17: Jr. Canadiens 2 at Nationals 5

 

How the Nationals Will Win:

It was a close finale as the Reps failed to overtake the Nationals for first place on the second last night but holding the top seed will give the 6th ranked Ontario program confidence heading into their opening series. On any given night in the GTHL, any team can pick up a win so this series could certainly go either way. The Nats didn’t find themselves in many losing contests this season thanks to a deep front line, competitive defense core and strong goaltending but they’ll need to find a way to remain at the top of their games as every team comes looking to knock them off their perch. They were the third stingiest team in the GTHL allowing only 1.67 goals against per game but ranked in the middle of the pack in goals for. If Roy and Wu can hold down the crease as well as they have all season and the big guns up front find the back of the net, then the Nationals should be okay but scoring hasn’t necessarily been consistent this season so the Nats will need to be careful to keep games in check.

 

How the Jr. Canadiens Will Win:

Two of the three games were low-scoring affairs vs the Nationals this season with them ending with a difference of one goal. If Cody Morgan and company ramp up their play and become hot then they have the skill and work ethic to make this a very exciting series. The Jr. Canadiens are a team that had it’s ups and downs this season but now they’ve earned their ticket to the big stage and a chance to play underdogs. There’s some firepower across the Jr. Canadiens’ lineup that can break games wide open and given their strong goaltender in Joseph Howe, there’s potential for a huge upset in the opening round.

 

Preview written by Brendan Ross (Director of Scouting)

 

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