Well the wait is finally over as the Flin Flon Bombers will meet the Notre Dame Hounds in their best of 7 SJHL Quarter Final Series starting tonight at the Whitney Forum.
This will be their second playoff meeting in the past three years with Notre Dame winning in OT in game 7 back in 2015.
Flin Flon comes into tonight's game well rested after beating Nipawin 4-0 to close out the regular season on March the 7th. The Hounds are fresh off beating the back to back Canalta Cup Champion Melfort Mustangs in the SJHL Wild-Card 3 games to 1, with a 5-2 win right in Melfort Tuesday night.
The Bombers finished the regular season 22 points ahead of the Hounds but Mike Reagan knows they will not be an easy team to beat. They split their four regular season matchups with both teams winning on home ice.
Flin Flon took both at the Whitney by scores of 4-0 and 6-4, while Notre Dame took both in Wilcox by scores of 4-0 and a 3-2 win in their last matchup February the 4th.
The Hounds have been a better team since re-acquiring goaltender Benjamin Patt January the 10th. Patt went 9-5-3-1-1 down the stretch and is known to be able to steal games. He will have to be their best player if Notre Dame is going to pull the upset.
We all know how good Ben Duperreault and Adam Dawe have been. Duperreault shared the scoring title and RBC player of the year with the Bomber's Greyson Reitmeier. Both players picked up 79 points with Reitmeier picking up 28 goals and 51 assists in 58 games while Duperreault led the league with goals with 37 to go along with 42 assists in 57 games.
Dawe was the SJHL Rookie Of The Year picking up 64 points in 54 games including 19 goals and 45 assists.
Both players combined for 12 points in their Wild-Card win over Melfort. As good as these two players have been, Notre Dame feel they have plenty more and will give the Bombers all they want in this series.
Flin Flon has a more balanced attack and ended up with 5 players in the top 20 in league scoring including Reitmeier, Lavallee,Zimmer,Sinclair and Shumlanski.
The Bombers were almost unbeatable at the Whitney Forum this year going 22-3-2-2 and proved they could win on the road finishing up at 17-11-0-1. The Hounds struggled on the road going 9-14-4-2 and were better at the Duncan McNeil Arena at 17-9-3-0.
One of Mike Reagan's goals was to be better on the road this year and they succeeded which I think will be a factor in this series.
Flin Flon was just 2 wins from a Canalta Cup Trophy last spring and I know they are confident they can get their again. They are anything from being cocky and have developed very good team chemistry and players have stepped up to accept their different roles.
This will be a fun group to watch and follow again this year. All Bomber playoff games will be broadcast on 102.9 CFAR and flinflononline.com.
Here is the complete schedule
Fri Mar 17 Flin Flon 7:30
Sat Mar 18 Flin Flon 7:30
Tues Mar 21- Notre Dame 8:30
Wed Mar 22- Notre Dame 8:30
Fri Mar 24- Flin Flon 7:30
Sun Mar 26- Notre Dame 8:30
Tues Mar 28 Flin Flon 7:30