There's no rest for the weary when it comes to the Greater Vancouver Canadians.
Fresh off a strong showing at the pres-tigous Macs Tournament in Calgary, the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League club resumes its regular season schedule this weekend with a huge test to begin 2013.
The Canadians will take on the defending league and Western Canadian champion Vancouver Northwest Giants who just happened to win the Macs Tournament for the second time in three years.
The Giants slipped past the Carolina Junior Hurricanes 3-2 in the championship game, the same American team that rallied in the third period to end the Canadians' title hopes in the quarter-finals.
After opening the tournament with a 3-2 loss to Saskatchewan's Battleford Stars on Boxing Day, Greater Vancouver rallied with three straight wins to capture its round-robin group, highlighted by a 4-3 triumph over the previously undefeated St. Albert Raiders in the final preliminary game.
A goal by Adam Musil with just 3: 15 left on the clock broke a 3-3 deadlock.
That set the stage for the quarter-final tilt with Carolina and the Canadians looked to be in good shape after opening up a 3-1 first period lead on goals by Garret Oliver, Jake Wozney and Alex Whitwham.
The Hurricanes pulled even with a pair of goals just 36 seconds apart, before Ty Schultz restored the Vancouver lead on a power play tally from Glenn Gawdin and Whitwham.
The score stayed that way until midway through the third when Carolina struck for two goals in less than three minutes, including the eventual game winner with 8: 29 remaining.
The Canadians other wins came against the Calgary Buffaloes (5-3) and the Saskatoon Blazers (4-2). Gawdin led the way against Calgary with a pair of goals.
Otis Goldman added a goal and two assist, while Musil and Andrew Klukas also scored. Austin Adamson and Whitwham added two helpers each.
Gawdin had a goal and two assists in the win over Saskatoon, including an insurance marker with 2: 05 remaining.
Taz Burman was terrific in net, as the Blazers outshot Greater Vancouver 37-25.
The BCMMHL made quite a statement in Calgary as three B.C. teams reached the final eight in the 25-team tournament, with the Cariboo Cougars joining the Giants and Canadians.
Greater Vancouver enter this weekend's series with a 12-8-2 record, good enough for fifth place in the 11-team league. The first place Giants are cruising along with a 20-2-2 record.
Game one of the series goes Saturday afternoon at the Burnaby Winter Club.
Game two is on Sunday morning (10 a.m.) at the Richmond Olympic Oval.
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