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Leafs ride out regular season with weekend series against Rebels

The Nelson Daily Sports
By The Nelson Daily Sports
February 15th, 2013

So will the real Nelson Leafs please stand up.

Ya the Leafs that reeled off a 10-1 November and not the squad that’s winless in February.

The Nelson Leafs conclude the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League regular season this weekend with a home-and-home series against the Murdoch Division Champion Castlegar Rebels beginning Friday in the Sunflower City.

The Rebels clinched the Murdoch title with a three-game win streak last weekend and are out to claim the KIJHL title with at least one victory against Nelson.

The Leafs have been a shadow of the team that was tearing up the league in prior to the Christmas break.

Since the happy man in the nice red suit paid a visit to the NDCC Arena, the Leafs have been a dismal 8-8-1 and 0-5 since the final week of January.

The Castlegar series is crucial to the Leafs playoff hopes as the Green and White enjoy a slim two-point advantage over the surging Beaver Valley Nitehawks.

The Hawks, fresh from being swept by the Rebels last weekend, meet Spokane in a season-ending home-and-home series.

The first game of the series goes at 7:30 p.m. in the Castlegar Arena Complex.

The return contest is Saturday at 7 p.m. at the NDCC Arena.

GAME NOTES: The Rebels success has been sparked by the one-two goaltending punch of Connor Beauchamp and Jordan Gluck. The latter leads the entire KIJHL with a 2.14 goals against average. And Beauchamp is not your regular backup, sitting third with a 2.32 average. . . .In contrast, Leafs Brett Soles is fifth in league goaltending but is 4-4 in his last eight games after starting the season with a 12-0 mark. Soles teammate Marcus Beesley, brought in to be the Nelson stopper, sits 21st in league netminding with a 3.29 goals against average. . . . Offensively Castlegar is led by veteran Stuart Walton with 73 points. Leafs top point man is Colton Schell with 66. . .The Rebels post an amazing 90-goal difference between offence and defence. . . . Only two Leaf players have scored more than 20 goals this season.



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