All is merry for the Terriers
The Terriers downed the Blues in Winnipeg in the team's final game before Christmas. (Heather Jordan photography)
As the MJHL breaks for Christmas, the 3-time reigning champion Portage Terriers find themselves second in league standings and are riding a holiday high, as the team has collected points in five straight while going 4-0-1 over that time.
The Terriers (23-10-1-2) sit two points ahead of the OCN Blizzard (22-11-3-0) and eight points back of the first-place Steinbach Pistons (28-7-1-0). That said, four of the Pistons' seven regulation losses have come at the hands of the Portage Terriers.
The Dogs will have ample time to reflect on the first-half of the season, with the Mixed Doubles Olympic Trials taking over Stride Place, the Terriers will forego their usual New Year's Eve affair and reconvene the latter-half of the season Jan. 5-6 with back-to-back games in OCN against the Blizzard.
Portage leads a pack of teams separated by just six points in the standings. The Terriers' 49 points give the Dogs a slim lead over OCN (47), Winkler (46), Virden (46) and Selkirk (43).
The Terriers picked up a pair of wins before the league broke for the holidays, downing the visiting Waywayseecappo Wolverines 6-1 Wednesday before picking up a 3-2 overtime win the following night in Winnipeg.
A combination of timely scoring and steady goaltending has propelled to Terriers this season, as the team sits third in league scoring with 145 goals, trailing only Steinbach (177) and Virden (158). The Dogs have allowed the third-fewest goals this season, conceding just 93 goals through the first 36 games. The Terriers trail only Steinbach (86) and Winkler (88) in that department.
League play resumes Dec. 30 with a match between Selkirk and Steinbach but the Terriers won't see action again until 2018. The first home game of the New Year is set for Jan. 12 when Dauphin comes to town, puck drop set for 7:30 p.m.