The Southwest Cougars will battle the Winnipeg Wild for the Manitoba AAA Midget Hockey League title this week.
The Cougars clinched a spot in the best-of-five league final for the second straight year by beating the defending national Telus Cup champion Winnipeg Thrashers 3-1 Sunday afternoon in Winnipeg to take the best-of-five semifinal series 3-1.
“It’s nice to get back there (to the league final),” said Cougars head coach Troy Leslie, whose team will also host the Telus Cup regional tournament in Virden later this month. “It was good getting by the Thrashers after we lost to them in the final last year. So it’s good that we can keep playing right up to the regionals now.”
Lucas Oliver led the way with two goals and an assist, while Hudson Morrison had one goal and one assist and Brian Archibald stopped 25 shots for the Cougars, who topped the West Division with a 35-5-4 record.
Tyrenn Bauer replied with the lone goal while Brenden Fiebelkorn made 15 saves for the Thrashers, who were second in the East Division in the regular season at 35-5-4.
The league-leading Wild (41-2-1) swept the Brandon Wheat Kings (23-18-3) in the other semifinal series.
Dates for this week’s league final are expected to be finalized today.
» Brandon Sun
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition March 12, 2012