Another disappointing effort isn’t what was needed heading into a lengthy break.
The Ponoka Stampeders Jr. B squad managed just 14 shots on net to go with 50 minutes in penalties in what ended up as a 5-1 loss to Red Deer on home ice Wednesday, Dec. 9, marking the club’s fifth straight defeat.
The Stampeders then faced a huge 10-day break before they host Airdrie on Saturday, Dec. 19 (puck drop set for 3 p.m.) then head to Banff on Sunday, Dec. 20 – which leads into the holiday break, with their next action not until Jan. 9.
Red Deer dominated the opening frame, scoring twice in the space of nine seconds with less than two minutes gone in the game, before making it 3-0 on a goal with only 18 seconds to spare in the first.
The frustration level of the Stampeders continue to rise until it boiled over about six minutes into the middle stanza, culminating in a pair of fights along with the ejection of Ponoka head coach Tyler Fiveland – who was a little too outwardly expressive and sarcastic for the referee’s liking following a call against the Stampeders near the midpoint of the contest.
In total, the second period saw both teams receive 82 minutes in penalties and no goals.
Ponoka did get on board near the seven minute mark of the third as Kwyn Hiebert’s shot found its way past the Red Deer goalie, but that would be all the Stampeders could muster.
Fiveland is hoping to use the long break to bring some recent additions up to speed on systems and work the rest of the squad hard on being more offensive-minded.
He explained that they need to take a lot more shots as well as work diligently on making their powerplay more efficient.