NEXT HOME GAME – Tuesday, January 29 versus Calgary Mustangs
Sunday, January 27, 2013 – The Brooks Bandits scored three goals within a 2:18 minute span of the third period last night to propel Canada’s #1 ranked Junior team to an 8-3 victory over the visiting Canmore Eagles in Alberta Junior Hockey League action in Brooks.
The Eagles, who shocked the Bandits with a 4-3 shoot-out victory in Brooks on Jan. 11, had the game tied-up at 3-3 after two periods, but simply ran out of gas in the third period.
It was Canmore’s third game in four nights as the Eagles won 5-1 in Drumheller on Wednesday night and scored a dramatic, come-from behind 4-3 overtime victory over the Camrose Kodiaks on Friday night in Canmore.
With the loss, the Eagle’s record drops to 20-21-5 and 45 points, good enough for fifth-place in the AJHL Southern Division standings. Canmore now trails the fourth-place Drumheller Dragons by five points, but enjoys two games in hand on the Dragons. The Dragons and Eagles will meet each other three more times in the race for fourth-place, and home ice advantage, in the first-round of the upcoming playoffs.
“We got stung by the best team in the country tonight,” said Eagle’s Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne. “We played a great 40 minutes of hockey but they came out in the third period and showed why they are ranked #1. We made a few minor mistakes and they were quick to strike. Overall I’m fairly happy with the way we played, just not the result. On the positive side, our powerplay is showing some real confidence now and that is a good sign as we approach the stretch drive of the season.”
All three Canmore goals were scored on the powerplay last night with Zack Rassell continuing to light it up as the future University of Anchorage-Alaska product scored his 20 and 21st goals of the year while hard-working rookie Alexander Bechtold recorded his first ever AJHL goal. Eagle defenceman Trey Phillips had three assists on the night and rookie forward Connor Wilson pitched in with two assists.
Canmore’s next game is a home date on Tuesday night, Jan. 29 when they host the visiting Calgary Mustangs. The seventh-place Mustangs (17-27-5) have had the Eagle’s number this season defeating Canmore three times in four games, and have outscored Canmore by a wide 15-8 margin.
NOTEBOOK: The Eagles played last night’s game in Brooks without the services of high-scoring forward Steven Phee. Phee, who has 19 goals on the season, suffered an upper-body injury in Friday’s win over Camrose. . . Eagle defenceman Nikolas Kosman rejoined the club on Friday night after missing 21 games with a broken forearm . . .With six goals and two assists in his last three games, Zack Rassell has to be a strong contender for this week’s AJHL’s “PLAYER OF THE WEEK” award. Rassell also won the “Player of the Week” award earlier in the season in mid-October. No AJHL player has won the Award twice this season. . . Canmore now has 14 games remaining on their regular season schedule, eight at home, six on the road.
PHOTO: ZACK RASSELL HAS 8 POINTS IN HIS LAST 3 GAMES
Photo courtesy of Julie Wilson.