SAINTS FALL 2-1 IN OT TO BONNYVILLE
By: Adam Kulak
After an 8-1 blowout at the hands of the Pontiacs two weeks ago, the Saints responded well with a great overall performance but didn’t quite get the result. They would get a point but would fall early in Overtime to the Pontiacs here at the Grant Fuhr Arena. Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but the Saints injury list would continue to grow as Wyatt, Hickey, Basnett and Bourlai would miss this one. Logan Acheson and Zach Douglas would get the call up on the Saints backend and Matt Davis would get his 28th start of the season
It was a very evenly played period as the game would remain scoreless through the first 20 minutes. A much better start for the Saints in this one compared to last time against Bonnyville. The Saints only had 4 shots in the period, but they were high quality shots. They could have had more but some chances bounced off their stick, they missed the net, or they couldn’t get the shot off in time. Both teams had an opportunity on the man advantage but neither team could break through. The Saints had multiple good opportunities they just couldn’t quite execute some of the plays that they wanted. Bonnyville would lead the shot clock 7-4 as the opening 20 minutes would end scoreless.
The 0-0 tie would be broken in the second period, unfortunately not for the right team. A puck battle behind the net popped right out front to Joel Ray with time and space and he made no mistake to give the Pontiacs the first goal of the game. You can’t blame Davis on that one as it was just a tough bounce that didn’t go the Saints way. Regardless of that goal, the Saints continued to play very well in this game. They had so many chances where they either missed the net or hit the post. They had 4 powerplay opportunities in the period but could not solve Pontiacs goaltender Colby Muise. They didn’t give the Pontiacs much at all in the period, they outshot them 15-4 in the middle frame, but the score would stay 1-0 as the Saints head into the third.
The Saints started the period on a powerplay after a tripping minor with seconds left in the 2nd. They couldn’t capitalize as both teams went scoreless on the man advantage in this game. Not a lot on the scoresheet as there was only one goal and one penalty in the period to Stanley Cooley. Both teams had great opportunities as the shots were 7-6 in the final period. Midway through the period, the Saints would finally find the equalizer. Ryan Peckford in on the forecheck, forced a turnover off goalie Colby Muise and put it out front to Cam Mitchell with an empty net. The rest of the period was super close as both teams were playing for the win. The Saints would kill off a penalty to Cooley and both teams would get the point and would have to settle this one in Overtime. Overtime would not last long unfortunately as 10 seconds in, Bonnyville would force a turnover and Luke Albert would get the winner as the Pontiacs take this one 2-1.
The Saints are going to be kicking themselves for all the missed nets and posts that they had. They were flying in this one, they were moving the puck so well and created so many high-quality chances. All lines were rolling in this game, MacGregor, Fyten and Dalton all had jump in this one, creating a ton of the forecheck and they were terrific on the PK. The Peckford – Mitchell – Harden line was dominant in this game, every time they were on the ice, they tilted the rink and they created a scoring chances every shift. The Saints also did a great job of cleanly exiting their zone, which is something that they have struggled with for a while. Each line had great moments and they deserved a better result then they got, but that’s the way it goes sometimes.
The Saints are back in action this Sunday afternoon as they welcome the Whitecourt Wolverines, puck drop at 2:00PM.