The Ponoka Stampeders ran into a fence this past week they couldn’t leap over, losing both games on a weekend road trip to southern Alberta after getting hit by some lightning on home ice.
First on Oct. 16, the Stamps were edged out 6-5 by the visiting Stettler Lightning and then fell 7-1 to the Copperheads in Coaldale Oct. 19. That was followed up the next day by an 8-0 loss to the Cubs in Medicine Hat.
General manager and head coach Mike Nesbitt loved the way his offence worked against Stettler, but a couple of issues cropped up in the last three games that need to be taken care of.
“We were able to stay close in that game and it is developing into a good rivalry,” he said.
“However, we have run into some defensive breakdowns and there are some penalty problems that have to be addressed.”
In Coaldale, Cree Auger got the Stamps on the board first just two minutes into the game, but that would be the last bit of offence for Ponoka as the Copperheads outshot the Stamps 39-26 on the night. In the Hat the next day, Ponoka gave up four powerplay goals and mustered up just 15 shots to the Cubs’ 40.
Meanwhile, the loss to Stettler stung a bit as the Stamps were the more aggressive club offensively, outshooting the Lightning 50 to 37. Brandt Seland had a pair for Ponoka, while singles came off the sticks of Jon Griffiths, Cree Auger and Carson Bear.
Homesteading — The Stampeders, who now sit third in the North division standings, will return to the more friendly confines of the Ponoka Culture and Recreation Complex for the next three games and hope to curtail a three-game losing skid. The club will host High River Oct. 26 (puck drops at 8:45 p.m.) then take on the Wranglers of Sylvan Lake Oct. 30 (game time 7:30 p.m.) before facing the defending league champs from Airdrie Nov. 2 (game time 8:45 p.m.).