Truro, Nova Scotia (October 16, 2018) – The Maritime Hockey League (MHL) is proud to announce the coaching and training staff who will lead the two teams heading to the Eastern Canada Cup All-Star Challenge in Trenton, Ontario from November 19 -21.
Billy McGuigan of the Summerside Western Capitals for Team Eastlink North. Joining Grand Falls Rapids Head coach Sandy McCarthy. John Blanchard (Summerside) and Ashley Grant-MacDonald (St. Stephen Aces) have been named to the team’s athletic therapists.
McGuigan is taking part in his first Eastern Canada Cup as his team currently sits in first place in the Eastlink North Division. He is a leader in coaching the Maritime Junior A Prospects ahead of the 2009 World Junior A Challenge, Team East at the 2012 CJHL Prospects Games, and served as an assistant coach for Team Canada East at the 2013 World Junior A Challenge in Yarmouth. He led the Western Capitals to a league title in 2012-13, in addition to an appearance in the RBC Cup Final that season in Summerside.
“Anytime you are honored and privileged,” says McGuigan. “I’m looking forward to working with Sandy [McCarthy], gaining as much knowledge as I can from him and his 20 years of NHL experience, as well as our training staff.”
“I feel these tournaments are of utmost importance to showcase our league,” McGuigan adds. “We have a great product here in the MHL, and this is an opportunity to prove that we can compete with the world.”
Sandy McCarthy joined the Woodstock Slammers as an assistant coach in 2015 and took over the responsibility of the team coach before the 2017-18 season. He followed the franchise as he moved to Grand Falls, and was formally introduced to the team’s head coach in August. McCarthy played 736 games in the NHL, from 1993 to 2004.
Team Eastlink South will have a look at Laurie Barron of the Yarmouth Mariners. Head Coach South Shore Lumberjacks Kyle McAllister has been named assistant coach. The athletic therapists will be Steve Lindsay (Truro Bearcats) and Ashley Merrithew (Amherst Ramblers).
This is the third consecutive year that Barron has represented the MHL at the Eastern Canada Cup. As head coach and General Manager, he led Yarmouth to an MHL Finals appearance in 2017-18. The Mariners have continued to excel in 2018-19, setting the pace at the league standings through the season’s first month. One of the longest-serving bench bosses in the MHL, Barron was named Coach of the Year for the second time last season. He previously earned the trophy in 2012.
“First of all I’m very excited to have a chance to represent our league at this event,” says Barron. “The talent and quality of players and coaches in the Maritime Hockey League is top shelf. I believe our league has taken a huge step forward by noting the event but sending two teams. “
Kyle McAllister is now in charge of the South Shore Lumberjacks. He took over the team’s General Manager last season and got the Lumberjacks back to the playoffs, where they won a thrilling seven-game series in the first round against the Amherst Ramblers before falling to Yarmouth in the Eastlink South Final Division.
This is the fourth year that the MHL has taken part in the Eastern Canada Cup. The league feels one team both in 2015 and 2017, with two teams in 2016. The rosters for Team Eastlink North and Team Eastlink South will be announced in the coming weeks.
Maritime Maritime Hockey League