PHOTO – Eagles Adam Tisdale scores his third goal of the season to give the Eagles a 2-0 second-period lead in last night’s 3-2 overtime victory over the Brooks Bandits. (Photo courtesy of Pam Doyle)
Final Score – 3-2 Eagles!
It’s a score that the hometown Canmore fans are happily getting accustomed to.
For the third consecutive home game, the Canmore Eagles posted a 3-2 victory over their opposition Friday night as they downed the visiting Brooks Bandits in overtime in Alberta Junior Hockey League action played before 435 boisterous fans at the Canmore Recreation Centre.
The victory improves the Eagles regular season record to 9-6-1 and helps take the sting out of an embarrassing opening night 11-2 home loss to the Bandits back on Sept. 11.
With three veteran defensemen out of the Eagle lineup (captain Jakob Lavoie and Griffin Mumby with injuries and Braiden Doucette serving the first game of a two game AJHL suspension), the rookie laden Eagles put up a scrappy effort and relied on the solid goaltending of Ryan Bontorin to post the victory.
Bontorin, named the Lafarge Player of the Game for the Eagles, was especially heroic in the third period when the Bandits mounted a ferocious comeback from a 2-0 second period deficit outshooting the Eagles 19-4 to tie the game and send the affair into overtime.
Rookie Coy Prevost, with his sixth goal of the season, was the overtime hero for the Eagles scoring a powerplay marker at the .17 mark, while Adamu Tanaka (2nd) and Adam Tisdale (3rd) also scored for Canmore. The Bandits outshot the Eagles 35-20 on the night.
“It was a remarkable team effort and a huge character win for our hockey club,” said Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne. “With three veteran defensemen out and 11 rookies in the lineup, it was formidable task but everyone contributed and they played their hearts out. With the exception of our goaltender Ryan Bontorin who was truly exceptional, it wouldn’t be fair to single anyone else out for praise. They all played with great heart and fortitude and that’s what it takes to beat a team like Brooks.”
The Eagles will now head to Brooks on Saturday night for a rematch with the Bandits.
NOTEBOOK: Special thanks to EPCOR for their sponsorship of last night’s home game and the free hot chocolate packages for every fan in attendance . . .Lane Olson picked up a pair of assists last night and now has 23 points in 16 games, just one point behind line-mate Matt Forchuk who has 24 points. Forchuk is in third-place in the AJHL scoring parade, while Olson is tied for fifth-place. . . The Eagles have now defeated six of the seven other teams in the AJHL Southern Division this year with home-ice victories over Okotoks, Camrose, Drumheller, Calgary Mustangs and Brooks. The Eagles have also defeated the Olds Grizzlys in their only game in Olds, and have not yet faced the Calgary Canucks.