CANMORE EAGLES 3, GRANDE PRAIRIE STORM 0
Good job Cameron Barnes!
Good job Trey Phillips!
Good job Alex Bechtold
Good job Colton Sandboe!
Good job Canmore Eagles!
The Canmore Eagles ended their 13 game losing streak in grand fasion on Wednesday night as they shutout the visiting Grande Prairie Storm by a 3-0 score in an Alberta Junior Hockey League game played at the Canmore Recreation Centre before 389 fans.
For goaltender Cameron Barnes, it was his first ever shut-out in Junior A hockey and mercifully ended his own personal losing streak of far too many games.
Eagle defenceman Trey Phillips scored two goals, his second and third of the season, and was named the Eagle’s “Star of the Game”.
Rookie forward Alex Bechtold was a physical force all night in his first full game of AJHL hockey after suffering a broken ankle during his first shift in his first AJHL game back on September 8.
Colton Sandboe, a call-up from the Grande Prairie AAA Midget team, pitched in with a third period goal to provide the Eagles with a 3-0 lead and some much needed breathing room.
For the entire Canmore Eagle hockey team, and organization, a huge burden has been unloaded.
To defeat, let alone shut-out the Grande Prairie Storm might just be what the “doctor ordered” for better things to come in the future. The Storm came into Canmore as one of the premiere Northern Division clubs, sporting a record of 22-10-2 and are the only AJHL team to defeat the powerful Brooks Bandits (34-1) this year.
“It was great team effort tonight and I couldn’t be prouder of the boys,” said a very relieved Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne, whose team outshot their opponents by a wide 45-27 margin. “I’m especially happy for Cameron Barnes, who has faced a ton of work and heartache since Ty Swabb went down with an injury. Sooner or later, the puck had to start going our way. Having Bectold back in the lineup seemed to give us some extra energy up front. We certainly have a long way to go, and a lot of hard work ahead of us, but for the moment, it feels pretty good. This win against a good club should help our confidence.”
With the victory and the two points earned in the standings, Canmore (11-19-5) is now tied for seventh-place in the AJHL Southern Division standings with the Calgary Canucks with 27 points. Canmore enjoys two games in hand on the Canucks. Canmore is also just four points back of the sixth-place Calgary Mustangs and enjoy three games in hand on the Mustangs.
The Eagles will wrap up their 2012 portion of their schedule with a home game against the visiting Olds Grizzlys Thursday night (Dec. 20) at the Canmore Recreation Centre. Game time is 7 pm.
Olds and Canmore have faced each other twice this season with the Grizzlys winning both times – 5-2 in the season opener on Sept. 8, and 3-2 in overtime on Oct. 5. Both games were played in Olds.
NOTEBOOK: Eagle netminder Ty Swabb has returned to his home in Edmonton to rest his high ankle sprain injury. The Eagles hope he will be back in the lineup in the New Year. . . Canmore can expect a physical game tonight against Olds, as the Grizzlys are the second most penalized team in the AJHL with 1121 penalty minutes. Canmore has just 658 penalty minutes. . . After Thursday’s game, the Eagles will break for the holidays before kicking off their 2013 portion of their schedule on Tuesday Jan. 3 with a game in Calgary against the Canucks.