Minto Cup Win Part of Strong Summer for Six Nations
A few days have passed since the Six Nations Arrows lifted their first Minto Cup in seven years and congratulations must go to the entire nation. On Saturday the Arrows won the Jr. A Canadian lacrosse championship, and the following day the Six Nations Rebels lifted the Founders Cup after winning their fourth straight Jr. B Canadian lacrosse Championship, and it does not end there for Six Nations as they continue to prove the place to be this summer.
Hoping to join the 'Rows and Rebs are the Six Nations Chiefs who currently lead the Major Series Ontario championship best-of-seven series 3-2 (Game 6 is Friday) and the Six Nations Rivermen who are currently playing for the Presidents Cup and title of best of Sr. B in North America.
But before what might be the greatest end-of-summer party on Six Nations, respect must be paid to the Six Nations Arrows and Coquitlam Adanacs and their richly entertaining Minto Cup Championship.
The Coquitlam Adanacs organization is no stranger to the Minto Cup, having been involved in the tournament for the last six years, a stretch that has resulted in runners up honors in 2011, 2012, and 2014, and an all important Minto Cup victory in 2010. The Adanacs have been one of the most consistent teams in Jr. A lacrosse in all of Canada and a large part of their recent success has been due to Wesley Berg, who will enter his senior season playing field at Denver this fall.
Berg finished the Minto Cup third overall in points with 21 and will be greatly missed in junior lacrosse but will be welcomed with open arms to the NLL. A player that will join Berg in the NLL is Eli McLaughlin. He finished second in points with 22 and gave the Adanacs a strong option on the left side giving great balance to their attack. The Adanacs played a tough series with all score lines not necessarily reflecting the tightness of the games played.
After falling behind in the series 2-0 the Six Nations Arrows were able to slip into their special 25th-anniversary black jerseys and rattle off four straight wins. The Arrows might not have had the start they wanted but their ability to stay patient paid off as they out scored the Adanacs 25-16 in the series' second periods and 23-14 in third periods. As the games went on, the Arrows clearly got stronger and enjoyed the momentum of multiple-goal runs in each of their four victories.
Six Nations' success in the Minto Cup came down to two factors: 1) the ability to deal with their discipline issues, and 2) the abilities of Johnny Powless.
The Arrows racked up 252 penalty minutes in six games, placing constant pressure on the defensive side of the ball. That pressure was soaked up by their best penalty-killer, goaltender Doug Jamieson, who finished with an impressive 8.46 goals against average. With all the penalties the Arrows took the Adanacs only managed 14 power play goals to the Arrows' six short-handed goals.
With the defensive end taken care of, tournament MVP Johnny Powless was able to dominate the offensive end. Powless not surprisingly finished first in points with 29, which included 21 assists. This is likely not to be the last lacrosse Johnny Powless plays this summer, look to see him playing for the Six Nations Chiefs in their push to win back-to-back Mann Cups. The run is not over yet.
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