PHOTO: Eagle defenceman Braiden Doucette will be going up against his old teammates on Wednesday night when the Bonnyville Pontiacs pay their only visit to Canmore. (photo courtesy of Pam Doyle)
NEXT HOME GAME – Wednesday, Nov. 25 – Bonnyville (16-8-5) at Canmore (15-9-2) – 7 PM
It may be just Game 27 of the 2015-16 regular season for the Canmore Eagles Junior A Hockey club, but for recently acquired defenceman Braiden Doucette, Wednesday night’s Alberta Junior Hockey League game against the visiting Bonnyville Pontiacs just might have a little extra meaning to it.
The 20-year-old Doucette, who has 19 points in 21 games since coming to the Eagles in a trade from Bonnyville back on September 18, was the captain for the Pontiacs last season and will no doubt see a lot of familiar faces lining up at the other end of the rink.
“For sure, I’ve got some good buddies on that team, but this game is not about me, it’s about getting a victory for my new team,” said Doucette, who scored two goals against the Pontiacs in a 5-4 Eagle loss when the two teams meet in Bonnyville back on Oct. 16. “We’ve hit a little bit of a rough patch during our past two games, so it’s time to turn it around and get a win. You never like losing to your friends, so I’ll be ready to go.”
For Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne, the acquisition of Doucette has certainly been a contributing factor in the club’s impressive 15-9-2 record to date. With Doucette orchestrating the club’s power play from the point, the Eagles now lead the AJHL in power play goals with 36.
“Braiden has done everything we could have expected from him, and more,” said Milne. “ He instantly brought character, leadership and experience to our dressing room and that’s critical if you have a lot of rookies in that room. He has that rare personality that is both competitive, but relaxed. He brings a calming influence to our backend and that’s a huge bonus for us during tight games.”
NOTEBOOK: Wednesday night’s home game against Bonnyville might feature a lot of offence as the Eagles and Pontiacs have a combined total of six players in the AJHL top 10 in scoring. Canmore’s Matt Forchuk sits in first-place with 40 points while Bonnyville’s Bobby McMann occupies second-place with 37 points. Canmore’s Logan Ferguson (34 points) is in 4th-place, Lane Olson (33 points) is in sixth-place, while Pontiac players Kyler Hehn and Brinson Pasichnuk are tied for eight-place with 31 points.