EAGLES FALL SHORT IN GAME 3
After splitting the first two games in Camrose, the Eagles”™ opening round series vs the rival Camrose Kodiaks shifted to the Canmore Rec Centre for Game three. It was the Eagles”™ first playoff home game in almost two years to the day (March 9, 2020). Just like in their Game two victory, the Eagles had a valiant effort, but unfortunately this time they fell short losing by a score of 4-2. With the loss, the Eagles are down two games to one in their Best-of-7 series.
“It was a good game from our work ethic perspective structurally. Like we said in our room, it was about if the puck bounced our way or their way in certain scenarios, and they got the bounces. Give them credit, they”™re a good team, good goalie in there and Clayton does a good job getting them to compete and play. We just have to go that extra mile the next game” says Eagles Assistant Coach and Assistant General Manager Bryan Arneson.
The Kodiaks scored the lone goal of the opening frame at 8:06 as Michael Horon fired a shot from behind the net that went off Eagles goalie Andrei Proctor-Ramirez and in.
In the second period, the Eagles tied the game on a goal from rookie Defenceman Dylan Bidyk at 8:30. Brayden Plaschewsky and Carter Myrol assisted. The Eagles had a lot of jump and many good scoring chances in the second period and also had the momentum, but unfortunately that momentum was interrupted at 15:51 when the Eagles had two penalties on the same play (Kyle Young for Charging and a too many men), so the Eagles had to defend themselves two men short for a full 2 minutes. The Kodiaks capitalized on that golden opportunity as Logan Lorenz tucked in a loose puck on a rebound at 16:15.
Early in the third period, the Kodiaks increased their lead on a goal from Mathieu Gauthier at 44 seconds. The Eagles though did not give up and we were able to get within one on Dylan Bidyk”™s second goal of the game, a blast from the point at 8:30 to make it 3-2 Camrose. Myrol and Cunningham drew the assists. Then the Eagles had some good chances to tie the game and force overtime, but could not get the equalizer. Kodiaks”™ Carson Whyte seal the victory for his team with an empty goal at 19:46. The final shots on goal were 36-31 in favour of Camrose with Proctor-Ramirez making 32 saves.
The two teams are back at it tonight for Game 4 at the Canmore Rec Centre. Puck drop is 7 pm.
“We should have the same game plan with a higher level of execution” says Coach Arneson. “That live or die mentally from the group, that”™s the reality of playoffs. What we drawn up and what we watched and prepped, I think will work. We”™ve seen it in Game two and it was evident that it does work. Same thing coming tomorrow, good attitude, work hard and compete. Do all the things that make playoff Hockey possible and if chips fall, they fall, we”™re going to have to work regardless”.
AROUND THE AJHL PLAYOFFS: All six opening round series have gone through three games and so far one team finds itself on the brink of elimination. That team is the Blackfalds Bulldogs who in their first playoff home game in franchise history lost 6-3 to the Okotoks Oilers to fall 3-0 in their series. In the other series in the South Division, the Drumheller Dragons knocked off the Calgary Canucks 5-1 to take a 2-1 lead in the series.
In the North Division, the Fort McMurray Oil Barons edged the Sherwood Park Crusaders 5-4 to take a 2-1 series lead. Down 2 game to none, the Bonnyville Pontiacs and the Lloydminster Bobcats each picked up a much needed victory to get back in their respective series. The Pontiacs shutout the Whitecourt Wolverines 2-0, while the Bobcats took care of the Drayton Valley Thunder by a score of 8-5.
Game 4 for every series goes tonight.