EAGLES COMEBACK TO TAKE DOWN THE DRAGONS
Grit, determination, and character were all on display Tuesday night as the Eagles battled hard to beat the third ranked Drumheller Dragons on home ice. The Dragons had won the first three meetings between the two teams, but the Eagles were determined not to lose this night. Despite being down by two goals at one point the Eagles rallied back and were able to slay the Dragons for the first time this season winning the game 4-3.
“We talked a lot about sticking in the battles and staying with the game plan regardless of the outcome. We knew something negative was inevitable. Our plan was to stay positive and have a good attitude” says Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne . “Tonight was a great example of that, we had a few shifts in the second where I thought they got lucky. We continued to battle through and had a great response to start the third period, which showed great character”.
In the opening frame, the visiting Dragons got the lone goal of the period courtesy of Ty Daneault at 9:19.
The second period was much more eventful and it was rookie Defenceman Dylan Bidyk who got the Eagles on the board at 5:39 with a blast from the point for his first career AJHL goal, Mitchell Watson and Vincent Scott drew assists. The Dragons regained the lead on a goal from Myles Hillman at 13:33, then just 48 seconds later Luke Fenning scored on the power play to make it 3-1 Dragons. The Eagles responded shortly after that to cut the Dragons lead in half as Vincent Scott threaded the needle for his fifth of the season, assisted by Mitch Watson and Drae Gardiner.
The Eagles carried the momentum into the third period and scored two quick early period goals to take the lead for the first time in the contest. Defenceman Cale Lyons tied the game with his sixth of the campaign just 30 seconds into the frame, assisted by Isaac Supping and Ethan Schaeffer. Soon after, 1:27 into the third, Banff product Max Monette scored what stood as the game winner, it was his fifth of the season, Scott and Bidyk got the helpers. The Eagles did a good job defending the rest of the period to seal a much deserved victory.
The final shots on goal were 29-28 in favour of the Dragons. Matthew Malin got the start between the pipes for the second time in the last three games and he made 26 saves to pick his third win of the season.
The Eagles, 16-22-7,remain five points back of the fourth place Okotoks Oilers, but are now six points up on the Blackfalds Bulldogs.
The Eagles will now head on the road to play their next four games, including a 3 in 3 stint on the road. They will head up to the Edmonton area to take on the Sherwood Park Crusaders (19-24-2) on Friday night, the Spruce Grove Saints (34-7-4) on Saturday night and on their way back home on Sunday, the Eagles will have a rematch with the Dragons. The Eagles next home game is on Friday, January 28 as they welcome the Olds Grizzlys at 7 pm.