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Petes Host the Trout for Game One
Tyler Penney

Mississauga will head across the 401 and up the 115 to take on the Petes to kick off the Eastern Conference Finals on Thursday.

It’ll be the first time the first and second seed in the east play in the conference finals since 2014. The last time this happened was when the Oshawa Generals (1st seed) and the North Bay Battalion (2nd seed) played in the 2014 Conference Finals. North Bay swept the Generals and then lost to the Guelph Storm in the Ontario Hockey League Finals.

The Petes have yet to see a loss this post-season after playing eight games – having swept two straight series (Niagara and Kingston) to get to the conference final for the first time in 11 years. While Mississauga went to a game six in round one against Ottawa and a game five against Oshawa in the second round.

The Mississauga Steelheads have never made it out of the first round until this year. The last time a Mississauga franchise made it out of the first round was the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors in 2011. It was a season that saw their Memorial Cup-hosting Majors lose only 15 games and were the only team in the entire OHL to record over 100 points in the regular season (108). The Majors would go on to lose game seven of the OHL finals to the Owen Sound Attack and then lose in the Memorial Cup Finals to the St. John Sea Dogs.

The Peterborough Petes haven’t had a ton of recent playoff success either until this year. The last time the Petes made it to the third round was the 2006 playoffs, which saw Peterborough make it to the Memorial Cup after beating the Barrie Colts in the third round (4-1) and then sweeping the London Knights in the OHL Finals. The Petes lost the tie-breaker game in the Memorial Cup to the Vancouver Giants, which ultimately ended their season. The Petes didn’t see the playoffs again until clinching eighth place in the 2008 season.

This season, the Petes finished first in the Eastern Conference and won the East Division, while the Steelheads finished second in the East and won the Central Division by 20 points. The two teams played each other four times over the course of the regular season and the Petes won the series 3-1, despite being outscored 18-12 (due mostly to the final matchup of the year).

Here’s how the two teams faired against each other this season: 

Dec. 1st – Peterborough 4-2 Mississauga @ Peterborough Memorial Centre (Timleck 2 G)

Dec. 2nd – Peterborough 5-3 Mississauga @ Hershey Centre (Jenkins 2 G, 1 A – Timms 3 A – Ang 1 G, 1 A)

Jan. 19th – Peterborough 3-2 Mississauga (SO) @Peterborough Memorial Centre (Korostelev 1 G, 1 A)

Feb. 24th – Mississauga 10-1 Peterborough @ Hershey Centre (MISS: Michael McLeod 3 G, 3 A – Spencer Watson 2 G, 2 A)

Petes assistant captain and overager Steve Lorentz currently leads his Petes in points and goals this post-season. Lorentz was drafted in the seventh round (186th overall) by the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2015 NHL entry draft and is having a strong playoff performance. Lorry currently leads his Petes in points (12) after eight games – with four multi-point games and only failing to record a point in the opening game of the playoffs against Niagara. Last series Steve had six points in four games (4 G, 2 A) and scored two goals on his birthday in game four. Lorry also boasts a 67% face-off win percentage in the playoffs and is 71 for 106 on draws this post season, which puts him in first place in the OHL playoffs.

Steelheads captain Michael McLeod isn’t far from home when he’s playing at Hershey Centre. McLeod grew up in Mississauga playing for the Toronto Marlboros and finished the regular season with 73 points in 57 games (27 G, 46 A) – only two points behind top prospect Owen Tippet (75 points). Mikey was drafted 12th overall by the New Jersey Devils in the 2016 entry draft after 61 points in in 57 games in the 2015-16 season with his Steelheads. The veteran is number two – trailing only Lorentz – with a playoff faceoff win rate of 62.7%.

Here’s how the two match-up:

Lorentz-McLeod

Tickets are still available for game three on Thursday night. Don’t miss your chance to see the Petes and Steelheads compete for the Bobby Orr Trophy. Purchase tickets online here, call the Collins Barrow Box Office at (705) 743-3561, or come down after 9:30am on Thursday (while supplies last).

Fan buses will be travelling to Mississauga for games three and four (Monday, April 24th and Wednesday, April 26th). It’s $60 per person/per game, which includes a game ticket, transportation to and from the game and snacks. The bus leaves the PMC at 4:00 p.m. If you’re interested you can sign up in the north lobby during games one and two or by contacting Julia and 705-977-0127. Deadline to sign up for the game three bus is Thursday night at game three.

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