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OJHL Postseason is Over for the Blades

COLLINGWOOD, ON - MARCH 22: Gavin McCarthy #74 of the Oakville Blades makes the save with Dylan Hudon #8 of the Collingwood Blues looking for a rebound during the first period at the Eddie Bush Memorial Arena on March 22, 2024 in Ontario, Canada (Photo by Jamie Green / OJHL Images)

By Ty Brooks

 

I’m sure at this point almost everyone is aware of the result that happened last night in Collingwood. Your Oakville Blades were eliminated from the OJHL Buckland Cup playoffs via a 4-1 series loss to the Collingwood Blues. It’s a tough loss to take for this team, who poured their hearts into these playoffs throughout the course of 11 games. In reality, the Blades likely could have made a deeper run if they hadn’t had to face off against the #1 team in the CJHL in just the second round. Fortunately for Blades fans, there is still more hockey to be played.

 

March 29th @ Collingwood 

Blades Top Player:

McCarthy 35/37 SVS .946 SV%

 

Almost 1,250 fans were in Collingwood’s Eddie Bush Memorial Arena for what would be the final game of the Blades OJHL postseason. It was a difficult game to play, and it proved to be too difficult this time around. The Blades had their chances by way of several power plays, but were unable to register a goal in this contest. They rang the post on multiple occasions and still worked hard to put 26 shots on the board, but it takes more than that to beat the Blues.

 

Gavin McCarthy was stellar as usual, registering a .946 SV% in this game. He will finish these playoffs with a 2.44 GAA and a .938 SV%, both incredible numbers after facing two strong teams in the postseason. Plenty of other players had a strong postseason as well, with Tyrrell, Clarke, Bonsteel, and Donohoe also putting up really strong numbers and consistently good performances through 11 games played.

 

Meaningful games aren’t done yet

While typically being eliminated from the league playoffs spells the end of a season for a hockey team, that’s not the case this year in Oakville. The Centennial Cup features the champions of each of the nine CJHL leagues plus one host team, which this year is Oakville. The automatic berth into this tournament given to the host team means that the Oakville Blades are still going to play very meaningful hockey. Starting on May 9th, there will be 10 straight days of tournament action before one team is crowned the champion of Junior A hockey in Canada. The competition will be extremely stiff (and will include the OJHL champion), but the Blades now have ample time to rest, recover, and train for the upcoming tournament.

 

So although this is normally farewell, this year is not over just yet. You Blades fans have been amazing so far in the playoffs, loading the arena with people for home games. You’ll get an extra chance to come watch the team if you’d like. Come May, we hope to see you there, and Go Blades Go!

 

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