Being off for 10 per cent of the time isn’t usually too bad for most people.
Unfortunately for the Ponoka Stampeders, that was just the exact amount of time that wound up being the difference in their 5-3 loss at home Dec. 8 to the Mountainview Colts.
The Stamps came into the third period down 2-1, but found themselves further behind after just 1:13 into that final period as the Colts notched a pair of quick strikes only 24 seconds apart.
Ponoka was provided a great opportunity to get back into the game courtesy of a five minute major about two minutes later. However, the Stamps managed just a few long range shots on net during that span, which head coach Matt Williams explained also contributed to the loss.
“That five minute major, especially at the point that it came, it’s important and we have to bury the puck. We score even once and it gives us a chance,” he stated.
“Our powerplay has been good lately, but for some reason it just wasn’t there tonight.”
As for the rest of the game, Williams felt the game improved as time progressed.
“We didn’t show up at the start and we weren’t prepared to play that first two minutes of the third, those came back and bit us,” he noted.
“Though I have to give the team credit lately. They’ve shown up, competed and been in every game recently. Our goalies play like they are at the top of the league and our forwards are gaining the needed experience. Things are beginning to happen and more often we are starting to find ways to win rather than lose.”
Colts got the lone goal of first, followed just under five minutes into the middle frame by Ponoka’s Isaiah Deschamps-Cross tying it up, only to have the Colts retake the lease a minute and half later.
That brief lapse in the third saw the Colts score on the powerplay 49 seconds in and then take advantage of a poor clearing attempt to get another 24 seconds later.
Odin Obray would pull the Stamps a bit closer near the eight minute mark, but the Colts would net their second powerplay goal four minutes later.
Stamps’ Wade Lightburn smashed a shot from the point past the Colts’ goaltender, just as a 5-3 powerplay ended, with less than four minutes remaining. However that would be as close as Ponoka would get.
Brandon Clark stopped 35 of 40 shots.
Corralling December — Stamps record of six wins, 13 losses and two overtime losses – keep them sixth in north division, five points behind Blackfalds. Ponoka has four games remaining this month, all of which are on the road. The Stamps are in Airdrie Dec. 14, visiting Red Deer Dec. 17, down Highway 2A in Blackfalds Dec. 18 and are in Stettler Dec. 22.