April 21st, 2024

U16 Canes look to snap slump in AEHL play


By Dale Woodard - Lethbridge Herald on March 2, 2022.

As they look to lock up a playoff spot, the Lethbridge U16 Hurricanes seek to snap a five-game losing streak as they head into their final weekend of Alberta Elite Hockey League play.
The Canes were handed a pair of home ice losses in league play last weekend, losing 8-3 to the Red Deer North Stars Saturday and 3-0 to the Calgary Royals at the Logan Boulet Arena.
The losses drop the Hurricanes to 15-17-0 and into sixth place in the South Division, one point up on the North Stars, who are now 13-17-3. Lethbridge has one game in hand on Red Deer.
On Saturday, the Hurricanes had a 3-2 lead after two periods before the North Stars sounded off with six third period goals.
Easton Banda scored his first of the season 2:12 into the first period to tie it at 1-1 after the first and Carter Cunningham and Nathan Hawkins – on the power play – struck 2:11 apart in the second for a 3-2 Lethbridge lead after 40 minutes.
But Red Deer sounded off in the final 20 minutes with six goals on 18 shots, ultimately outshooting the Canes 38-33.
Cunningham added an assist for a two-point afternoon.
Kahil Wright made 30 saves for the Hurricanes.
On Sunday, the Hurricanes sent 18 shots at Royals goaltender Preston Walker, but were unable to get one past him en route to the shutout loss as Calgary scored twice in the first and once in the third.
Harrison DeJong stopped 34 of 36 shots for the Canes.
The Hurricanes complete the regular season on the road and at home this weekend.
They’re in Calgary to take on the Flames (NWCAA) Friday at 6:45 p.m. before returning to the Logan Boulet Arena Saturday to host the Calgary Bulls (CBHA) at 3 p.m.
In the AEHL U16 division, the top-seven teams from the North and South division qualify for playoffs with the eighth and ninth place teams playing a best-of-three series March 10-13.
The next round goes March 17-20 with the first-place team playing the eighth-place team, second vs. seventh, third vs. sixth and fourth vs. fifth.
Teams will then be reseeded for the third round in a best-of-three series March 24-27.
The four remaining teams – two in each division – qualify for the Provincial Championship with host in a five-team event.
The Provincial Championship goes April 7-10.
The Lethbridge U15 Val Matteotti Golden Hawks were 0-2 on the road to wrap up their regular season.
The Golden Hawks lost 7-2 Saturday to the Okotoks Oilers and were downed 9-3 Sunday in Calgary by the Bisons (CBHA) to finish the season at 5-29-0.
On Sunday against the Bisons, a five-goal third period was plenty for the Bisons to ice the win.
Dominic Grieco scored twice for his 17th and 18th goals of the season and Kobe Urasaki added the other Lethbridge marker.
Jager Gugyelka added two assists for the Golden Hawks.
Seth Bird-Goodstriker stopped 26 of 35 shots in the loss.
On Saturday in Okotoks, Gugyelka and Kayson Christian scored in the third period for Lethbridge, but the Oilers scored five times in the first period to grab the early lead.
Brylin Noble stopped 24 of 41 shots.
Bird-Goodstriker came in to play 4:01 in the third, stopping all four shots that came his way.
The Golden Hawks prepare for the first round of playoffs, starting tonight when they host the Calgary Northstars at 6 p.m. at Nicholas Sheran Arena.
Game 2 goes Saturday in Calgary at 5:15 p.m.
If necessary, Game 3 is Sunday at noon at Nicholas Sheran Arena.
The Northstars were also 5-29-0 in the regular season.
In South Central Alberta Hockey League play last weekend, the Lethbridge U18 Hockey Hounds posted a pair of wins.
The Hounds downed the Foothills Bisons 5-4 Friday night at Henderson Arena and followed that up with a 6-1 win over the Taber Golden Suns Saturday in Taber to improve to 11-18-4, good for a tie for fourth place in the South with the 11-18-4 Golden Suns.
Lethbridge scored three times in the second and third periods in Saturday’s win in Taber after the teams skated through a scoreless first period.
Drew Constant scored twice in the third period for the Hockey Hounds, while Zac Rajcic, Ashton Angle, Jayden Spence and Zane Rajcic added singles.
Zac Rajcic added two assists for three points and Angle chipped in with a helper for a two-point game.
Kade Degenstein scored for the Golden Suns.
Ryan Dekok stopped 18 of 19 shots for the Hockey Hounds to post the win. Landon Porteous made 28 saves for the Golden Suns.
On Friday against the Bisons, the Hockey Hounds scored three goals in the third period to snap a 2-2 tie after the second period en route to the win as Zac Rajcic, Spence and Constant scored for Lethbridge in the final 20 minutes.
Jordan Campbell and Garrett Carlson added the other Hockey Hounds goals.
Zac Rajcic had an assist for two points, while Griffin McCulloch had three helpers for Lethbridge.
Nixon Ordway turned aside 32 of 36 shots to earn the win.
The Hockey Hounds are back at Henderson Arena Saturday when they host the Bow Valley Timberwolves at 7:15 p.m.
In the Alberta Junior Female Hockey League South Division final, the Lethbridge Eagles have struck first against the Cochrane Chaos.
The Eagles posted a 4-1 win over the Chaos Friday night in Cochrane as Juliana Gulayets scored twice for Lethbridge and Eva DeBaie and Kianna Dietz added one each.
Kendi Lundell and Brooklyn Palmer each added two helpers for Lethbridge.
Hayley Whelen made 27 saves in the win.
Game 2 goes Saturday at 3 p.m. at Nicholas Sheran Arena.

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