By: Terry Martin
Photo: Aaron Grimaldo
The Spruce Grove Saints started their 2021 season off with a fiery start, facing off against one of their biggest rivals, the Sherwood Park Crusaders. Al Stafford was in attendance tonight, offering his public address services.
The first period started with a Brett Pfoh snipe from the top of the right circle just before the 10-minute mark of the period. A couple power plays for the Saints and even some broken glass were just some of the highlights down at the Grant Fuhr Arena. Spruce Grove would end up dominating the period in shots 16-4 and leading 1-0 on the scoreboard.
Both teams would trade some great chances, in the 2nd period, with Max Beckford making the best save by diving back to the goal line to save the puck. Ewan McPherson would score his first goal of his AJHL career after scooping up a rebound in the crease to bring the Saints lead to 2-0. Ryan Arnold would score for the Crusaders with 2 minutes left in the second period to make a 2-1 Saint lead after 40 minutes. The final shots would still favour the Saints 31-16.
The Saints would pad their lead 5 minutes into the third period as Ewan McPherson would get his second goal of the night after picking up another rebound in front of the net. With 12 minutes left in the game, Caiden Gault would eventually find the puck and burry it after a flurry in front of the net to give the Saints a 4-1 lead! The rough stuff would pick up later in the game, leading to a fight between Jayden Davis and Blake Sydlowski. The Saints would hold on to the lead and take the win on opening night in Spruce Grove. Final shots in the game were 48-22 for the Saints.
Both teams will faceoff in Sherwood Park on Saturday for an 8pm start. You can catch all the action on the Saints Radio Network (mixlr.com/sprucegrovesaints), as well as HockeyTV starting at 7:45pm.