1st Half Recap

by Spencer De Wolfe

As the 1st half of the 2018/19 seasons draws to a close with the holidays approaching the Nationals ended with a bang! Ending the 2018 campaign with back-to-back wins improving their record to 16-14-0-1 (33 Points) which is good enough for 6th place however the Nationals are just 6 points back of third. As the 2nd half of the season approaches it will be a tight race to the post-season, which is a goal that was set by Nationals management and players. Throughout the first half of the season the Nationals have not just enjoyed success on the ice but also off. "We are a new franchise team and nobody expected us to be this competitive however here we are in a battle to finish in the top 4 but it won't be easy and we know that" Nationals GM Jake MacNeil stated. MacNeil is still optimistic that the Nationals will make a big push in the 2nd half. "Like any team we will be looking to add some players to help us but the group we have works hard and has bought in. Start of the year we learned that in this league any given night it's any teams game and we need to play 60 minutes. We've let about 8 games slip away and it sucks but it's a learning curve for all of us!". As mentioned the Nationals have had success on ice but exciting things off ice have also transpired. "We were able to land who I think was one of the best players I've seen in Ilja Cetvertak. He signed a pro deal in Norway it was a blow to lose a player like Ilja but we're happy for him. He was a skilled and hard worker who gave it his all. The opportunity for us to help get him (Ilja) to the pro ranks also showcases our programs abilities to develop players" . MacNeil admitted losing Cetvertak was tough blow but the Nationals have added some skilled players since the 1st game of the season. Joining over the past few months were skilled forwards Bailey Pritchard of Paris, Ontario alongside him were Caleb Mussat a local resident, Justin Whetham, Jake Anderson and Etienne Barrette a former QMJHL draft pick. These new additions smoothly connected with the already powerhouse players Dallas Loiselle, Antoine Michaud, Mikhail Frolov, Davis Schmidt and more! The one thing the Nationals take lots of pride in is knowing that their development plan is working off with over several players receiving school offers to this date. "We have a great group of players with tremendous skill. Like I mentioned earlier we could be a dark knight in this half of the season but we just need to play a full 60 minute game. Hopefully if we feel it's a proper fit we'll add some new additions to the team for the 2nd half but we don't want to mess with our chemistry in the room so we'll be busy but careful". The Nationals are happy with how things have gone thus far and hope to get more pro active in the community to help with attendance! The Nationals would like to wish all supporters a Merry Christmas and happy holiday and look forward to seeing everyone in the new year!