Joe Serpico scored three goals for the Eagles over the weekend as the club split their weekend road trip in Northern Alberta losing 4-3 to Grande Prairie on Saturday night but they bounced back for a 4-3 victory Sunday afternoon in Sherwood Park. (Julie Wilson Photo)
NEXT HOME GAME – CALGARY CANUCKS, TUESDAY, DECEMBER 9 – 7 PM
With six starting players out of their lineup, the Canmore Eagles dug deep and emerged from their two-game weekend Alberta Junior Hockey League northern division road trip with a record of 1-1, losing 4-3 to the Grande Prairie Storm on Saturday night before bouncing back to defeat the home-town Sherwood Park Crusaders 4-3 on Sunday afternoon.
With leading scorers Connor Wilson and Ryley Wilson plus defenceman Griffin Mumby all attending the try-out camp for Team Canada West for the upcoming World Junior A Championship, and defencemen Nikolas Kosman, Jakob Lavoie and Brent Schimmel sidelined with injuries, it was truly a gritty performance by the remaining Eagle players to come out of the weekend with two points.
The victory gives the Eagles a record of 14-17-1 and they now find themselves in 6th place in the AJHL Southern Division standings, five points behind the 5th-place Olds Grizzlys and three points up on the 7th-place Calgary Canucks.
“We played collectively as a group today for 60 minutes and battled in all areas with a very short bench,” said Assistant Coach and General Manager Jeremy Reich following Sunday’s victory. “Our penalty killing was outstanding and goaltender Ryan Ferguson found his groove and calmed our bench down at times by smothering the puck and controlling his rebounds. Our whole team played like warriors today. We played the game the right way – chipping pucks out, no turnovers, and a relentless forecheck. It was a much needed win for the boys and I’m happy for them. Now we need to get ready for Calgary on Tuesday night”.
In Saturday’s 4-3 loss to Grande Prairie, the Eagles received goals from Brayden Biccum (1st), Joe Serpico (6th) and newcomer Reid Wilson (1st). Biccum, a rookie who has logged a ton of minutes due to all the injuries on defence, was named as the Eagles “Star of the Game.”
In Sunday’s 4-3 victory, the Eagles received two goals from Joe Serpico (7 & 8), Simon Philp (11th), and Kyle Pauls (4th). Goaltender Ryan Ferguson was named as the Eagles “Star of the game”, stopping 40 of 43 Sherwood Park shots.
NOTEBOOK: Tuesday night’s home game is Bow Valley Christmas Spirit night and all fans are encouraged to please bring a gift for those less fortunate . . . .The Eagles X-mas tree lot, located on Bow Valley Trail, was a busy place over the weekend as over 225 X-mas tress have now been sold. There are 175 left . . . The Eagles victory in Sherwood Park was their first win against the Crusaders in Sherwood Park since the 2010 season and was their first victory over a team with a winning record since October 18. Sherwood Park is now 18-14-4.