Owen Sound Leeder & Associates Major Atoms Jr. Attack Win OMHA, News (Owen Sound Minor Hockey Group)

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2018-19 REP - Atom Major - Owen Sound Leeder & Associates Major Atoms Jr. Attack Win OMHA
Submitted By Michael Harris on Sunday, March 24, 2019
With their 62nd win of the season the Owen Sound Jr. Attack Leeder & Associates Major Atoms clinched the Ontario Minor Hockey Association (OMHA) title in Barrie on Saturday.  It has been a quite a run for this team in the playoffs as they clinched their Georgian Bay League championship this past Tuesday.  To start the OMHA playdowns the Jr. Attack swept through the first round defeating Burlington, Guelph and New Hamburg in the round robin stage.  

That meant a showdown with possibly the most historic rival of Owen Sound minor hockey, the Woolwich Wildcats.  After two hard fought games the Jr. Attack got past the Wildcats and ran into a good Oakville Rangers squad.  This series was 3/5 so there was a lot of work to be done.  Owen Sound stormed out of the gate winning 5-1 and 2-0 to start the series.  Oakville came to play in game three and fought their way into the series with a 3-2 win at the Bayshore.  Losing in Owen Sound did not sit well with the Leeder & Associates Major Atoms so they went back to Oakville looking to finish the series.  That is exactly what happened as the Jr. Attack came away with a 4-3 win and punched their ticket to an OMHA semifinal series against Erie North Shore.  This team plays out of Kingsville and Harrow 4.5 hours south of Owen Sound.  Owen Sound lost the coin toss so that meant a weekend trip south to play two games.  It had been a tough road to this point and the players knew things would not get any easier.  In game one the Jr. Attack earned a 4-3 win and then skated off the ice with a 4-2 win the next day.  That completed the road sweep and put Owen Sound in good shape returning home for a game on Friday the next weekend.  The snipers were on display that night at the Julie McArthur Regional Recreation Centre in Owen Sound and the final score was 6-4 for the Jr. Attack. It was a heart-pounding game that sent this team the OMHA Finals.  Waiting for them were the Barrie Jr. Colts. These Jr. Colts were the defending OMHA champions so they know a thing or two about winning and performing in big moments. Things got started the way Owen Sound wanted when they won the coin toss and therefore earned the right to host game one of the series.  There was excitement in the air at the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Saturday March 16th as the teams got ready to play.  The game was being televised on RogersTV which always adds to the atmosphere.  Barrie showed up and put on a show for the cameras by winning the first game 5-2 and effectively stealing home ice advantage away from the Jr. Attack.  There was not much time to regroup as the two teams faced off again the next day in Barrie.  Owen Sound rebounded and showed the Jr. Colts what they were truly about.  The Jr. Attack were relentless on the forecheck, worked hard on the backcheck, passed really well and ultimately came away with a 3-1 victory.  This was an example of what an OMHA final should be like.  Two very good teams pushing each other to play at the tops of their games.  Game 3 was back at the Rec Centre in Owen Sound and it was a packed house.  What a showing by supporters of minor hockey in this community.  The bleachers were full and there was nowhere left to stand along the boards either.  Coach Ken Williams led the team out of the room and onto the ice with “Jackie Chan” by Tiesto & Dzeko blaring over the loud speakers.  When the team hit the ice the roof just about came off of the building as the fans welcomed them. In game three the Jr. Attack got on the board first but the Jr. Colts answered right back to take some of the life out of the hometown crowd.  That life was restored when Owen Sound went up 2-1 midway through the 2nd period.  Owen Sound scored another goal in the third period to earn their second straight 3-1 victory.  Returning to Barrie on Saturday March 23 Owen Sound had a chance to win the OMHA crown.  In the case of the OMHA, that crown takes the form of Red Hats (#redhats).  Only the winners of the OMHA can get their heads on these championship red hats.  The crowd was into it in game 4 as the two teams played another tight game.  After the final buzzer sounded the Owen Sound Leeder & Associates Jr. Attack Major Atoms had won the Ontario Minor Hockey Association Championship with their third straight 3-1 victory.  Barrie had played their hearts out and should be commended for their great season.  The Barrie fans were gracious and it was wonderful to cheer alongside of them.  Upon their arrival back to Owen Sound, the Jr. Attack were met by the Owen Sound Fire Department who led them through town to the Bayshore as a victory parade these players and their families won’t soon forget!  Owen Sound now has a combined record of 62 wins, 6 losses and 3 ties on the season.  The Jr. Attack have earned their place now in the Ontario Hockey Federation tournament that brings together the champions of the OMHA, Northern Ontario Hockey Association, Greater Toronto Hockey League and the Minor Hockey Alliance of Ontario.  This tournament takes place April 12-14 in Kapuskasing, ON.  The Major Atoms have three weeks to prepare for their final test of the season.  Good luck team!

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