Photo – It was another happy ending for the Eagles last night as they defeated the Fort McMurray Oil Barons 4-0. (photo courtesy of Julie Wilson)
NEXT HOME GAME – TUESDAY, DECEMBER 10 – CALGARY CANUCKS – 7 PM
If there was ever any doubt about the legitimacy of this year’s Canmore Eagle's lofty aspirations, they were effectively erased last night as the Eagles shutout the mighty Fort McMurray Oil Barons 4-0 in an Alberta Junior Hockey League game played before 469 fans at the Canmore Recreation Centre.
The Oil Barons came into the game as Canada’s #1 ranked Junior A hockey club with an impressive record of 26-2-2 and a + 74 in the “Goals For vs Goals Against” category, but they were no match for the suddenly surging Eagles.
With the victory, the Eagles are now 18-13-2 on the season and find themselves in fourth-place in the AJHL Southern Division standings with 38 points. They trail the third-place Drumheller Dragons by just a single point, and the second-place Okotoks Oilers by three points.
As has been the case all season, the Eagles received outstanding goaltending from rookie netminder Ryan Ferguson who picked up his first-ever AJHL shutout by stopping all 45 Oil Baron shots directed his way. The 18 year-old Calgary native is now an impressive 12-6-1 on the season and was named the Eagle’s “Star of the Game” for an amazing 8th time this season.
“I just don’t have any words to describe how well Ryan is playing for us right now,” said Eagle's Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne. “To just beat the Oil Barons is a huge accomplishment, let alone shut them out. It’s even more stunning when you consider that Fort Mac also enjoyed a two-man advantage for a full two minutes and still couldn’t beat him. Ryan is on a roll right now and I couldn’t be happier for him. What a great way to record your first-ever AJHL shutout!”
The victory over the Oil Barons marked the end of a very successful weekend for Canmore as they also defeated the Olds Grizzlys 4-1 in Olds on Friday night. Canmore had not won in Olds since the 2010-11 season.
OTHER HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEKEND
– The Eagles effectively shut-down the top two point getters in the AJHL as #1 scorer Spencer Dorowicz from Olds (43 points) and Fort McMurray’s Ryan Bloom (39 points) were both held pointless.
– The Eagle’s penalty killers were perfect all weekend as Olds went 0-6 and the Oil Barons 0-4 on their respective powerplays.
– Eagle forward Jeremy Margeson, who had five goals during the entire 2012-2013 season, scored three times over the weekend, once in Olds and two last night against Fort McMurray. In a remarkable stat, Margeson opened the scoring in Olds at the .10 second mark of the first period, and followed it up with goals against Fort McMurray at the .20 second mark of the first period and at the .31 second mark of the second period. Margeson now has seven goals on the season.
– Eagle forwards Jordan Revie and Bryan Arneson both had productive weekends as Revie had 2 goals and 2 assists, while Arneson picked up four assists. Simon Philp had 1 goal and 2 assists.
– By defeating the Oil Barons last night, Canmore has now defeated all the top teams in the AJHL this season including the Spruce Grove Saints (27-5-1), Brooks Bandits(20-9-5) and Okotoks Oilers (18-9-5).
– Eagle sniper Luke Simpson returned to the lineup over the weekend after missing 18 games with a dislocated elbow and scored his 9th goal of the season against Fort McMurray last night.
– Canmore is now an impressive 13-4 on home ice.
– Special thanks to RBC for sponsoring last night's game and presenting a $10,000 cheque to the Canmore Minor Hockey Association.