By: Terry Martin
With the AJHL regular season slated to start the weekend of November 13th, the Spruce Grove Saints (0-5-2) end their exhibition season with two games against the Fort McMurray Oil Barons (4-3-1) this weekend. The Saints will travel north on Saturday for a 7:30 p.m. puck drop and will be back at the Grant Fuhr Arena on Sunday at 6:30 p.m.
The Saints enter the weekend series coming off two losses against the Sherwood Park Crusaders, despite hitting two posts in overtime last Sunday night in Spruce Grove. The Saints only other opponent in exhibition play has been the Drayton Valley Thunder, where all games except for one were decided by just one goal.
This weekends opponent, the Fort McMurray Oil Barons, are coming off a two-loss weekend against the Grand Prairie Storm. The Oil Barons battled the Bonnyville Pontiacs in their previous exhibition games, winning four of six.
Players to Watch?
For the Spruce Grove Saints, Luigi Benincasa currently leads the Saints in points in exhibition play with seven assists, while Nick Leyer leads the team in goals with three. The Oil Barons are led by goaltender Evan Fradette, who is boasting a 0.962 save percentage, while Michael Hodge leads the team with five goals.
Due to Alberta Health Services limitations of only 100 people for indoor gatherings, the Saints will not be releasing tickets to the general public for this weekend?s game.
A full exhibition schedule is available on AJHL.ca and all team websites. No League Passes will be accepted for entry, including all AJHL and CJHL accreditation, until facility capacity limits are increased.
The AJHL Exhibition Season outline meets the current health and safety requirements of the Government of Alberta and aligns with Hockey Canada?s Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines and Hockey Alberta?s Return to Hockey Plan in focusing on the safety and wellbeing of all participants and spectators.
All Saints Exhibition Season games will be broadcast on the Saints Radio Network (mixlr.com/sprucegrovesaints) as well as on HockeyTV.com.
The Spruce Grove Saints would like to thank everyone for their continued support and patience during these unprecedented times. Hopefully we can welcome everyone back to the Grant Fuhr Arena in the near future.