2016 NA3EHL Championship Finals are set
March 22, 2016
The NA3EHL Division Finals are in the books and the Championship is set after the Cape Cod Islanders and Jersey Shore Wildcats won their respective divisional playoff titles this past weekend.
As playoffs go, it was easy for either team because each Division Final featured a #1 vs. #2 match-up, which lived up to its billing.
In the East, the Islanders took down the L/A Fighting Spirit in two straight games and rode the solid goaltending of Steven Schmitt in the series. Schmitt stopped 57 of 62 shots in the series and has his playoff save percentage at 93.5%. He is likely to get the start in Game 1 at Jersey Shore. The Islanders also got contributions offensively from a variety of different players. 10 different players have scored at least a goal in one of the two playoff series as the Islanders remain unscathed in the 2016 post-season. Chris O’Donnell leads the team in points with seven, which all have been assists.
In the West, the Wildcats had a wild series with the New York Aviators. It was predicted to be a high-scoring series and it was as both teams featured plenty of players who could put the puck in the net. After a Game 1 loss, the Wildcats found themselves on the ropes in Game 2. After jumping out to a 2-0 lead, the Aviators stormed back in the 3rd period to tie the game and send it to overtime with Jersey Shore’s season hanging in the balance. However, series hero Travis Valvo stepped to the forefront and netted the overtime-winner and then in Game 3, Valvo netted a hat-trick as the Wildcats advanced with a 6-2 win. Valvo’s six goals is tied for the NA3EHL playoff lead.
We will have a Championship series preview later in the week, but here is a look at the finals schedule. All games will be played at Jersey Shore Arena as the Wildcats secured home ice thanks to a better regular season record.
2016 NA3EHL Championship Finals (best of 3 series, all times Eastern)
Game 1: Thursday, March 24, 6:00pm
Game 2: Friday, March 25, 7:30pm
Game 3: Saturday, March 26, 11:15am*
All games will be played at Jersey Shore Arena