A solid effort despite a short bench gave Ponoka’s midget hockey squad a leg up to start the season.
The Fountain Tire Midget Wolves opened up their Northern Alberta Interlock tier 2 regular season at home Oct. 22 with a determined 4-2 victory over the Wetaskiwin Icemen while icing just 11 skaters and two goalies.
Wetaskiwin took advantage of the situation early, opening up a 2-0 lead on goals late in the first and about seven minutes gone in the second.
However, the Wolves would storm back to tie it on goals by Jared Bussiere with just over seven minutes left in the middle frame and then one by Owen Feragen with 93 seconds to go in the stanza. Tristan Johnson would net the game winner 1:26 into the third, then ice the victory with an empty-netter with 22 seconds remaining.
“The boys played pretty well and are improving all the time,” said Wolves’ head coach Shane Norn, whose team wound up being outshot 40-24 on the afternoon.
“Despite that, I think we were much better at the forecheck than they were and outplayed them. There was a lot more effort from our team and the kids were pretty disciplined.”
Norn did add that the team is doing better at being in the right position at the right time, but that it is also a part of their game that needs some further improvement.
“They did well in the win, but there is a long way to go yet. They are still learning the systems we are trying to put into place and it will take some time before they really catch on,” he said.
“These boys are a really good group and very coachable.”
The Wolves hope to continue their winning ways as they hit the road Oct. 28 to take on Battle River in Sedgewick.
From the corral – The other Ponoka Minor Hockey clubs are awaiting their regular schedules to begin, but the Lacoka girls clubs are underway. The midgets ran their record to 2-0 with an 8-1 road win in Leduc Oct. 21, while the bantams beat up on Athabasca in Ponoka that same day 7-2.