Friday, December 21, 2012 – The Canmore Eagles ended the 2012 portion of their Alberta Junior Hockey League season on a positive note last night as they dropped the visiting Olds Grizzlys 4-2 at the Canmore Recreation Centre.
It was the Eagle’s second win in as many nights as they defeated the Grande Prairie Storm 3-0 on Wednesday night.
With the two victories and the four points earned, the Eagle’s have now escaped the basement in the AJHL Southern Division standings and sit all alone in seventh-place with 29 points. Canmore is also just four points back of both the fifth and sixth-place Olds Grizzlys and Calgary Mustangs and enjoy three games in hand on both teams.
In last night’s feisty affair against division rival Olds, the Eagle’s received goals from Zack Rassell (#12), Bryan Arneson (#9), Steven Phee (#17) and an empty netter from Jeremy Margeson (#5). Goaltender Cameron Barnes stopped 18 of 20 Grizzly shots to record his second straight victory in the Eagle net. The Eagles outshot the Grizzlys 31-20 on the night.
“I am extremely proud of the boys for their hard work and effort during our last two home games,” said Eagle’s Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne. “With all the injuries we’ve had over the past six weeks, our club has certainly seen our share of adversity and it’s been tough on the boys. But they rallied and played their hearts out over the last couple of nights. By winning the last two games before the break, we have regained our confidence and put ourselves in a position to make a move up the standings in the New Year. We can feel good about ourselves again!”
The Eagles will now enjoy a 13-day break between games as their next action is scheduled for Thursday, January 3rd when they travel to Calgary to meet the Canucks. Canmore’s first home game of 2013 is slated for Saturday, January 5 against Olds.
“The Christmas break couldn’t come at a better time for our hockey club,” said Milne. “We can definitely use these two weeks to heal, rest-up and get healthy again. When we reconvene on New Year’s Day, we should see a few of our wounded players coming back to our lineup.”
NOTEBOOK: After breaking his ankle on his first shift in his first AJHL game back on Sept. 8, Eagle rookie forward Alex Bechtold looked impressive in his first two games back in the lineup. Although held pointless, the 6’1, 206 lb. power forward provided his team with plenty of enthusiasm and was a physical force whenever he was on the ice. . . Newly acquired forwards Austin Hebert (6’1 – 185 lbs) and Bryan Arneson (5’11 – 180 lbs) are also providing the Eagles with some new-found physicality and chipping in on the score sheet as well. Hebert, acquired from Flin Flon, has two goals and three assists in his past seven games and Arneson (from Spruce Grove) has two goals and two assists in his past seven games.  . . Colton Sandboe, a 16-year-old from the Grande Prairie AAA Midget team, also suited up for the Eagles during their two game home-stand and didn’t look out of place. Sandboe saw plenty of ice time and scored a goal in the win against his home town Storm on Wednesday night.