WEDNESDAY, FEB. 27, 2013 – After suffering a difficult 4-0 shut-out loss to the visiting Brooks Bandits at home on Tuesday evening, the Canmore Eagles received some welcome news today when they learned that they have been awarded two points in the AJHL Southern Division standings as a result of a rare forfeiture ruling dating back to last Saturday’s 5-3 home loss to the Drumheller Dragons.
The Alberta Junior Hockey League made the decision in a ruling released today that read as follows:
“The Drumheller Dragons hockey club will forfeit two-points for playing an ineligible player on February 23, 2013 in Canmore.  The game will be counted as a win for the Canmore Eagles.
Head Coach Brian Curran is suspended for three (3) games under Hockey Alberta bylaw 8.3 for failing to enter the player in the Hockey Canada Registry.  The suspension is to be served during the Dragons' next two regular season games and game one of the playoffs.”

As a result of the forfeiture and the addition of two points in the highly competitive Southern Division standings, the Eagles (23-30-6) now have 52 points and can clinch a fifth-place finish if they can defeat or tie the last-place Calgary Canucks (16-39-4) in their final regular season game at home this Friday, March 1. Game time at the Canmore Recreation Centre is 7 PM.
Ironically, should the Eagles earn a point in their last game and finish in fifth spot, they would then play the fourth-place Drumheller Dragons in the first round, best-of-five, opening round playoffs that are scheduled to begin next week.
“We caught a bit of a break, and now we have to take advantage of it,” said Eagle’s Head Coach and General Manager Andrew Milne, whose club has won four of the five games against the Canucks this season. “Despite the fact that the Canucks will not make the playoffs, we can’t afford to take them lightly. The Canucks beat us on home ice last year in the final game of the season to stop us from qualifying for the playoffs. They just beat the playoff bound Calgary Mustangs on Tuesday night and they would like nothing better than to end their season on a winning streak and knock us down a notch in the standings. We’d better be ready for an intense game. The playoffs start now for us!”
NOTEBOOK: In last night’s 4-0 loss to the Bandits, the Eagles had six injured veteran players out of their lineup including defencemen John Stevens, Ciaron Driscoll and Alex Barnes, plus forwards Steven Phee, Nils Moser and Austen Hebert. Simon Philp did return to the Eagle’s lineup, while midget call-ups Colton Sandboe, Carter Jensen and Kurt Hildebrand also saw plenty of ice-time. Canmore defenceman Ashton McLeod was named the Eagle’s “Star of the Game”. . .  For the Bandits, last night’s victory was their 53rd of the season, establishing a new AJHL record for wins in a regular season. . . Congratulations to Torin Young, Braiden Leth and Brian Stevens as they have all moved on from last night’s semi-final in the Can-Bow Motors Las Vegas Rapid Fire Shoot-Out.  The three finalists will now put it all on the line during Friday night’s game to see who will win the Grand Prize of a trip for two to Las Vegas! . . . Regardless of who they play, the Eagles will open their 2013 playoffs on the road for Game 1 on Wednesday, March 6 and Game Two on Thursday, March 7. The series will then switch back to Canmore for Game Three on Saturday, March 9 and Game Four, if necessary, will be played on Sunday, March 10. Both Canmore home games will start at 7 pm.