Spitfires finally get internal clocks right

Ryan Pyette, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:22 PM ET

The Memorial Cup champion Windsor Spitfires finally got their third shot at a 4:30 p.m. game time right this week.

The OHL champs lost their first two mid-afternoon contests during the tournament round-robin. They didn’t handle the adjustment well.

“We don’t start at 4:30 in our league — it’s usually 2 or 6 p.m.,” Windsor head coach Bob Boughner said. “It’s tough on your routine. No excuse, but the players have mentioned that. They like to eat a big meal six hours before the game, then take their nap in the early afternoon. I you play at 4, you get up and eat breakfast, then you’re adding on another big meal an hour later.”

The solution has been to wake up earlier. Boughner supports changing a couple of game times next season as preparation in case the Spitfires return to the Cup next year in Brandon.

“I hope it wasn’t the reason why we didn’t play well (in starting 0-2),” forward Eric Wellwood said. “You believe they could play the game at 5 a.m. and you’re ready to go.”

Windsor knocked out both Quebec teams in the tournament but there has been a ground-swell of support for the OHL champs around town.

Some believe that if not for Kelowna’s subpar play in a 2-1 round-robin loss to Windsor, the Spitfires would’ve been long gone and a Quebec team would’ve made the final.

It’s been a rough week for the Quebec league. Only three players won at the Canadian Hockey League’s award ceremony on Saturday and none of them were the majors — top player, coach, goalie, defenceman and rookie.

The host league took home top scorer, most sportsmanlike and humanitarian player of the year.

Windsor’s Taylor Hall was named the MVP of the tournament. Kelowna’s Jamie Benn took top scorer honours while

Drummondville’s Yannick Riendeau was the most sportsmanlike and teammate Marco Cousineau the best goalie.

The Cup all star team was: Hall, Benn and Rimouski forward Patrice Cormier, world junior teammates Tyler Myers and Ryan Ellis on defence and Cousineau in goal.

AROUND TOWN

So, who’s this Louky?

Well, he’s a seal and serves as the Rimouski Oceanic mascot, which is kind of funny because the team’s logo features an ocean liner with teeth.

Louky was scarce inside the Colisee after the Windsor Spitfires eliminated the Oceanic in the tie-breaker. But he is often found dancing around his name-sake Loukyville, the Cup’s collection of festival tents that had been set up in the rink’s parking lot.

There was a souvenir shop, a beer tent, musical entertainment, a Hockey Hall of Fame exhibit, artificial skating ice and some mini-boards and nets almost always packed for mini-road hockey games.


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