PHOTO: The Brooks Bandits and Canmore Eagles will renew their rivalry this weekend with a pair of games. (Julie Wilson file photo)
NEXT HOME GAME
Friday, Oct. 23 – Brooks Bandits (8-3-1) at Canmore Eagles (8-6-1) – 7 PM
The Canmore Eagles will have redemption on their mind when they face the Brooks Bandits in a home and home Alberta Junior Hockey League series this weekend.
The two teams faced each other in a similar home and home series on the Sept. 11-12 weekend to open the 2015-16 AJHL regular season schedule with the Bandits routing the Eagles 11-2 in Canmore and following it up with a 6-2 victory in Brooks.
Since those two opening weekend losses, the Eagles have found their wings and have gone on to post an overall record of 8-4-1 in their last 13 games and have gone 4-0-1 while playing in the friendly confines of the Canmore Recreation Centre.
“No doubt, it’s going to be another challenging weekend for us as Brooks always brings their A game with them and if you’re not ready to go from the opening face-off, they’ll jump all over you,” confirms Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne. “Both teams are coming off a good week of rest and practice, so it promises to be a fast-paced, hard hitting weekend.”
Special team play will no doubt be in focus this weekend as the Bandits took full advantage of the Eagles sub-par powerplay during the opening weekend two-game series as they capitalized for six powerplay goals and scorched the Eagles powerplay for four short-handed goals.
“We had a very limited pre-season schedule and it didn’t give us the opportunity to spend as much time as we would have liked on our special team play and the Bandits certainly took advantage of our inexperience,” said Milne. “We’ve played another 13 games since that opening weekend and hopefully we’ve improved in that area. Brooks has some speedy forwards on their penalty kill units and we have to be aware of that when we’re on the powerplay.”
Game time Friday night at the Canmore Recreation Centre is 7 PM.
NOTEBOOK: Both teams will be missing key players due to AJHL suspensions as Canmore defenceman Braiden Doucette (4 G, 4 A in 8 games) will start a two-game suspension for a major slashing penalty incurred in Lloydminster last weekend and the Bandits Logan Aasman (4 G, 5 A in 10 games) will sit one game for verbal abuse of an official during a game in Spruce Grove last weekend. . . Of the 23 roster players on the Bandits roster, 12 players are from Alberta, six players come from other Canadian provinces and five are from the USA. There are no local players on the Bandits roster . . The Eagles roster is comprised of 20 Alberta boys and 3 players from British Columbia. The Eagles have three Canmore born players on their roster. . . Friday's game will be sponsored by EPCOR and will feature a special first period intermission “MEMORY” contest for two lucky fans. An Eagle hockey jersey and Eagle Hoodie will be up for grabs . . .Toronto baseball fans can also keep track of the Blue Jays as Game Six will be shown in the Eagles Nest Lounge.