When the Mississauga Reps got a second shot at the defending TELUS Cup
champions, they weren’t going to miss.
Despite falling 3-2 to the Toronto Young Nationals in the Greater Toronto
Hockey League (GTHL) championship game, the Reps earned an opportunity to
compete for a spot at Canada’s National Men’s U18 Club Championship because
the Young Nationals were the host team for the Central Regional.
After going unbeaten through the preliminary round – including a 4-4 tie
with Toronto – the Reps edged out the Nepean Raiders 6-5 in the semifinals
to set up an all-GTHL regional final.
The Young Nationals netted the lone goal of the first period, but Alec
Stewart and Ivan Fabjan scored 81 seconds apart midway through the second
to put the Reps ahead. Drew Perkins found the empty net in the final minute
and Mississauga earned a 3-1 victory to secure its spot in Okotoks.
While Toronto won’t become only the third team ever to go back-to-back at
the national championship, the Reps have a chance to continue their
league’s run of success – teams from the GTHL have won three of the last
five TELUS Cup (Toronto in 2015 and 2019, North York Rangers in 2016).
“We're just looking at it as an excellent opportunity to [play] for a
national championship,” says Reps head coach Shawn Snider. “[It] certainly
doesn't come around very often. So, we just want to take advantage of it
and live in the moment, enjoy it as much as we can. And we want to keep
getting better every period we play once we get out there.”
The storyline of setbacks and triumphs has been a consistent one for the
Mississauga, which was sidelined in January due to COVID-19 shutdowns.
Still able to practice, the Reps stayed sharp and finished atop of the GTHL
with a 22-3-3 record.
It’s a veteran group, with 10 of the 13 forwards born in 2005, and the team
chemistry – on and off the ice – is something Snider lauds as a key to
“It's just been a great mix of kids [and a] really good parent group,”
Snider says. “It's been an excellent team in terms of cohesiveness and
camaraderie. It's been one of the best that I've had in a long time.”
The Reps will make their second TELUS Cup appearance; Buffalo Sabres
goaltender Malcom Subban backstopped Mississauga to a silver medal at the
2010 tournament in Levis, Que., falling to Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman
Morgan Rielly and the Notre Dame Hounds in the final.
Mississauga opens its
TELUS Cup schedule
against the host Sydney Rush on May 16.
HOW THEY GOT TO OKOTOKS
Greater Toronto Hockey League
Preliminary round: 3-0-0 – first place in Group A (defeated Don Mills
Flyers 7-2, defeated Markham Majors 5-0, defeated Toronto Jr. Canadiens
Semifinal: defeated Toronto Titans 7-0
Final: lost to Toronto Young Nationals 3-2
Preliminary round: 3-0-2 – second place (defeated Guelph Gryphons 4-1,
defeated Soo Jr. Greyhounds 6-1, tied Toronto Young Nationals 4-4, defeated
Huron-Perth Lakers 4-0, tied Nepean Raiders 4-4)
Semifinal: defeated Nepean Raiders 6-5
Final: defeated Toronto Young Nationals 3-1
Regular season record: 22-3-3 (1st in GTHL)
Goals for: 114
Goals against: 46
Longest winning streak: 7 (Nov. 14-Dec. 11; Feb. 12-March 5)
Playoff record : 9-1-2
Goals for: 57
Goals against: 22
NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY
2010 – Mississauga Reps | silver medal | 3-3-1 | 25GF 24GA
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Dynamic offensive player … puts up a lot of points … good speed, good
Two-way centre … heavy shot … skilled skater
Uses size (6’6”) to his advantage … offensive game has flourished … good
reach … solid defensively
OHL DRAFTED PLAYERS
Declan McDougall – Mississauga Steelheads 2021 (6th round, 104th overall)
Jake Mallory – Kingston Frontenacs 2021 (13th round, 244th overall)
Zach Christie – Guelph Storm 2021 (14th round, 277th overall)
Michael Cesario – Windsor Spitfires 2021 (15th round, 291st overall)
Ivan Fabjan – Ottawa 67s 2021 (15th round, 296th overall)