The 5-team Island Junior Hockey League gets its 2013-14 campaign started on Wednesday night in Sherwood when the Montague Total Assets Fitness Maniacs visit the Sherwood A&S Scrap Metal Falcons at 8:00 at Simmons.
The Maniacs were hot in the pre-season offensively including a 10-3 win over the Falcons on September 23rd. The Falcons will have most of their big guns from last season back again, including scoring leader, Craig Dougan, as well as Brady Cook, Matt McQuaid, and Josh Kirkpatrick.
On Friday night at 7:30 in Montague, the Maniacs will host the Holland College Hurricanes. The Hurricanes will rely on newcomer Jonathan Boutin in goal to carry most of the load this season. Boutin, a native from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia and a first year Fire Fighting student has had experience in the Maritime Hockey League as well as in the QMJHL as a member of the P.E.I. Rocket organization.
Defensively the 'Canes will see returning defensemen Curtis Hall, Eric Locke and Will Connolly as well as rookies Logan Welsh, Peter Giggie and Branson Groom in the lineup. Forwards Blake Ozon and Jonny Richards return to lead the team up front alongside rookies Alex Seyforth and Nick MacDonald look to add an impact right away.
On Saturday, the Arsenault's Fish Mart Red Wings will get their season started at Simmons at 8:15 against the 'Canes. The Red Wings lost some key graduating players this season, but have league scoring champion, Jeremy Balderston back again and will be lead once again in goal by Chris Gallant.
The first week will wrap up on Sunday night with the defending league and Don Johnson Memorial Cup champion Kensington Moase Plumbing & Heating Vipers hosting the Falcons at 7:00 in Kensington. The Vipers will once again be a favourite to win it all with several key players returning and a mix of good new pickups.
The 32-game regular season will conclude on February 21st, with the league champion set to represent PEI at the 2014 Don Johnson Memorial Cup in Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia.