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Celtics lose, tie on first day of Meredith Cup tournament

August 17, 2013

The host Cornwall Celtics are in trouble at the annual Meredith Cup tournament they’re hosting this weekend.

The Celtics were defeated 9-3 by the Halton Hills Bulldogs in the final game Friday night of the round-robin portion of the Ontario Junior C Lacrosse League championship at the Benson Centre. After a 9-9 draw with the Clarington Shamrox in the tournament opener Friday morning, the East division-champion Celtics need a win today against the Hamilton Bengals to stay in contention for a berth in Sunday’s final.

Playing their second game in a row didn’t seem to bother the Bulldogs, who scored the only two goals of the first period Friday night. The second goal came with just three seconds left to play, and when Halton Hills added two goals in the first three minutes of the second period, the game was under control.

Cornwall got as close as 5-2 and 6-3 but Adam Charalambides’ goal just 70 seconds after the Celtics’ third goal ended the threat.

Marty Burwell had two goals and three assists to lead Halton Hills while Charalambides, the league’s regular-season scoring champion, had two goals and two assists.

In the Bulldogs’ first game, Charalambides scored the first three goals of the game, including the only two of the first period, as Halton Hills, the West division champion, beat Hamilton 7-2. He finished the game with three goals and four points while Mike Nicolucci had a goal and four assists.

Drew Coleman was the winning goaltender in each game.

Cornwall raced to a 3-0 lead in the first six minutes of the tournament opener but that didn’t deter Clarington, which had been beaten by the Celtics in three straight games in the East division final. The Shamrox narrowed the gap to 5-3 before the first period ended, and took a 9-7 lead with four straight goals in a nine-minute span in the second half of the second period.

Cornwall scored twice in the third to tie the score, with a goal by Conner Thompson with 6:22 to play forcing overtime, but the 10-minute extra period was scoreless.

Ryan Dewar had two goals and four assists for the host team, while Brandon Perras and Matt Bourassa scored twice each. Blaine MacKay had four assists.

Clarington got a goal and four assists from Keenan Cook, the league’s rookie of the year, and two goals apiece from Taylor Meraw and Aaron Woods. Garrett Williams and Courtland Araujo each had a four-point game.

This morning, Clarington will play Hamilton at 11 o’clock, then follow that with a game at 5 p.m. against Halton Hills. The round-robin will conclude at 8 p.m. tonight with Cornwall meeting Hamilton.

The top two teams will advance into the final Sunday afternoon at 2. Clarington is the three-time defending league champion.

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