With only four games left, the Ponoka Stampeders are looking to hold onto a playoff spot and hoping to gain some momentum.
Unfortunately, the Stamps losing skid grew to five games over the weekend, falling 7-2 in Strathmore.
The club played a good opening 20 minutes, down just a goal, but then allowed three goals in the first four and a half minutes of the second period to basically seal the game’s fate.
Nate Higgins and Chevazz Rabbit would score within a four minute span around the midway point of the middle stanza for Ponoka’s only offence of the night.
That isn’t to say the Stamps didn’t have their chances, as for the first time in seven games — dating back to Dec. 10 — the club wasn’t outshot by their opposition. Each club were credited with 36 shots on goal, with Ponoka outshooting Strathmore in the third.
Despite the loss, the Stampeders still control their playoff fate in the run for the final playoff spot in the Heritage Junior North division. As of Jan. 23, Ponoka remained six points up on Three Hills with each team having five games left to play.
The Stamps could clinch their spot in the playoffs, and a first round date with Red Deer or Blackfalds who are presently tied for third in the division, with a combination of a pair of Three Hills losses or two Ponoka victories the rest of the way.
Hoof prints: The Stamps were in action last night (Jan. 24) in Stettler (result unavailable at press time) and will be back on the road Jan. 28 in Banff to play a game that was rescheduled from last Friday. The club will then close out the month by facing their two possible playoff opponents back to back — hosting Red Deer Jan. 29 at 2:30 p.m. then in Blackfalds on Jan. 31. Ponoka will conclude the season, and possibly fight for that playoff spot, at home on Feb. 4 against Three Hills.