Perfection needed at Memorial Cup run

SCOTT FISHER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:55 PM ET

BRANDON — The road ahead is a treacherous one for the Moncton Wildcats.

It’s a steep uphill climb, filled with potholes.

One false move and they’ll go over the proverbial cliff, their Memorial Cup done.

The Wildcats, who dropped their first two games of the tournament, know they need to be perfect the rest of the way because their next loss will be their last.

Head coach Danny Flynn said his squad realizes there is no room for error after losing 5-4 to the Calgary Hitmen and 4-0 to the Brandon Wheat Kings.

“You have to win to get in,” Flynn said. “We have to find a way to win one game.

“If we don’t win a game in the round-robin, then we don’t deserve another chance.”

Unfortunately, that one win has to come against the powerful Windsor Spitfires.

But it’s the Spitfires who are providing the Wildcats with hope these days.

Windsor was in the same exact position at last year’s tourney, where they rebounded from an 0-2 start to win the whole thing.

Sniper Kelsey Tessier said that recent history is something his club is clinging to.

“It definitely gives us hope,” Tessier said. “They did it last year.

“And we’re a great team, too. We’re not a team that’s going to quit.”

Wildcats captain Scott Brannon said his squad is still confident it can find the win column.

“We still have a game to play,” Brannon said. “So it’s not over yet.

“We’re going to keep the guys positive and use our day off to get ready to play our best game.”

The Wildcats offence needs to get straightened out prior to Tuesday night’s tilt against the Spitfires.

They were fifth in the QMJHL with 276 goals during the regular season.

But they couldn’t manufacture even one against the Wheat Kings Sunday afternoon.

“We have to play our system,” said Tessier, who led the team with 30 points during the club’s march to the QMJHL championship.

“When we do that, we’re a good team.

“We need to play behind their defence and make sure we have the puck more than they do.”

Instead of dissecting his own team’s game, Flynn elected to credit those of his opponents.

“We’re playing hard,” Flynn said. “They’re good, character kids and they work hard.

“But we’re playing against good teams, stronger teams than we’ve seen in our league.

“They’re either teams that won their way into the Memorial Cup and deserve to be here, or are hosting and built a strong team to represent their city.

“We’re doing our best. But the teams we’re playing are very, very good.”

scott.fisher@sunmedia.ca


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