The Stampeders celebrate after Bailey Nesbitt’s floating shot found the back of the net in the third. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Stamps hoping to charge into the playoffs

Nine games left for the Stampeders

The new year has meant somewhat of a new start for the Ponoka Stampeders.

After a pair of losses on the road after getting back from the holiday break, the Stamps were able to muster up an 8-6 home ice victory over Strathmore Jan. 12.

Bailey Nesbitt scored once in each frame for a hat trick. That included the opening goal just nine seconds into the contest along with a powerplay goal and the game winner in the third.

Potts got his second of the night with just over two minutes left in the game, while the other goals on the night came from Joshua Robinson, Russell Hassler and Braden Kiessens.

For head coach Mike Nesbitt, the game was an example of what the club can do when they have a full bench.

“It was the first time in a long while where we have had a full line up on the ice,” he said.

“You run a powerplay and a penalty kill, run a team properly. Strathmore is a good offensive team, but they had a short bench and had a late night in their overtime win in Rocky. So, we knew if we could stay close that we should be able to win the third period. Our guys got a bit of confidence out of this win and hopefully we can keep that rolling the rest of the season.”

Another key was the Stampeders acquiring Tyrees Goodrunning from Rocky Mountain House in a player swap that saw Brandt Seland join the Rams.

“It wasn’t a trade, but neither player wanted to play where they were, so we got it worked out,” Nesbitt added.

“Tyrees is another leader for our team and his positive reinforcement in the room really helps us out. Things are looking good for us.

For the head coach, it really is crunch time if this squad wants to compete in the playoffs, as Ponoka sits last in the North Division with 16 points.

That being said, the team is only two points back from Rocky Mountain House and four behind Stettler, both of whom hold down the final two playoff spots and the only teams Ponoka can catch with nine games remaining.

“We have got to win most of our games now in order to solidify that playoff spot,” Nesbitt said.

“The team knows what they need to. You can’t win with a short bench all the time, so the guys need to continue to buy in and commit.”

Hoof prints: After a pair of tough losses after the holidays — the Stamps were blanked 7-0 in Cochrane on Jan. 4 before falling 5-2 in Airdrie on Jan. 10 — the club looks to continue creeping up the standings as they close out this three-game homestand. Tonight (Jan. 15) they host Stettler at 7:30 p.m. then are home to Coaldale on Jan. 19 (3 p.m. puck drop). Also of note, three players represented the Stamps at the annual all-star and prospects games held Jan. 5 in Medicine Hat. Kodan Smallboy and Josh Robinson played in the prospects match while Bailey Nesbitt and Robinson were in the all-star classic. Two other Stamps were also selected — Devin Anderson and Cree Auger — but Anderson is out with an injury suffered Jan. 4 and Auger couldn’t play due to illness.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Tyrone Potts, left, and Bailey Nesbitt had a great opportunity in the third with a two-man breakaway, but weren’t able to capitalize as the puck rolled away from Nesbitt before he got a shot off. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Bailey Nesbitt rifles this shot over the Strathmore goaltender’s shoulder and into the top shelf late in the third for the eventual game winner. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Just Posted

Supporting a friend with mental health issues

AHS: Do you have a friend who just doesn’t seem to be their usual self?

PHOTOS: Ponoka Curling Club hosts Alberta Junior Curling Tour Event

The Ponoka Curling Club hosted its first-ever Alberta Junior Curling Tour Event… Continue reading

Jeffery Kraft of Ponoka remembered for being loving, well-liked

Kraft passed away on Dec. 15, 2019, in Lacombe at 20 years old

Deserving Ponoka student appointed to National Youth Council

Yael Witvoet will now be able to advocate for causes on a national scale

Province investigating death of Samson Cree Nation youth in care

16-year-old found deceased outside in Rocky Mountain House

VIDEO: Music stars pay tribute to Kobe Bryant at Grammys award show

Music artists including Billy Ray Cyrus, Rick Ross and Kirk Franklin paid tribute to Bryant

Pregnant B.C. woman stuck in Wuhan, the epicentre of coronavirus outbreak

Woman is due to give birth in Wuhan, China unless she can get out

Ontario confirms second presumptive coronavirus case in wife of first patient

Both arrived on a China Southern Airlines flight after having been to Wuhan

Canada’s basketball community mourns Kobe Bryant after helicopter crash

Bryant was an 18-time NBA all-star who won five championships

‘Devastated’: Fans, celebrities remember Kobe Bryant after his death

Bryant played all of his 20-year career with the NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers

Kobe Bryant, daughter killed in California helicopter crash

Bryant entered the NBA draft straight out of high school in 1996

Canadian Lunar New Year celebrations dampened by coronavirus worries

But Health Minister Patty Hajdu said today that the risk of infection is low

‘Presumptive case’ of coronavirus in Canada confirmed by Ontario doctors

Man in his 50s felt ill on his return to Canada from Wuhan, China

Most Read