Sunday, October 27, 2013

Atom Chinooks struggle in home game against Crowsnest Thunder

Atom hockey: Chinooks vs Thunder
C. Davis photos and video
Chris Davis, Pincher Creek Voice

It was a tough weekend for Pincher Creek's Atom Chinooks.  On Saturday they lost a goalie and an away game against Raymond's Ice, and on Sunday they hosted the mighty Crowsnest Thunder at Pincher Creek's Memorial Community Centre arena.

Both games are seeding games which help decide which Spud League division (A, B or C) teams will be in when the regular season commences next month.

Chinooks goalie Rylan Bruns stopped a lot of shots under very difficult circumstances (click here for more about that).  I mean a LOT of shots.  It was the first full game in net for Bruns.  Bruns rose to the challenge and was actually quite good in net. 'More D!" is the call of a goalie in the wild, and I'm betting he came to have a finer understanding of what that means during this game.  The Thunder were fairly relentless on offence, wearing the Chinooks down and creating their opportunities, increasing their odds with every assertive play.  It worked for them.  This is a team that appears to have gelled already, remarkable for this early in the season.  Their passing play is actually quite exceptional for this level of hockey.  They set each other up well, and their moves during and right after a faceoff are often right out of the textbook.

While the Thunder had a definite edge throughout this game, the Chinooks certainly didn't hand it to them.  There was a fair bit of back and forth action, lots of great attempts on the Chinooks' part, but the more consistent teamwork of the Thunder was hard to beat.

5 Atom Chinooks were absent from this game, for various reasons.  With Bruns in net added to that situation I imagine the Chinooks had to learn new roles quickly.  It's hard to gel in that situation but they were getting there as the game progressed.  I don't think we've seen what this team can do yet.

The final score was 13-5 in the Thunder's favor. 

Alex Comeau (far right) smacks in a powerplay goal for the Chinooks
Cade Ames put the Chinooks on the board in the first period, unassisted.  Riley Potts and Alex Comeau scored twice each for the Chinooks.  William Johnson Junior got an assist on one of Pott's goals. W Double J has come a long way in a short time, his play has really improved, he's figured out how to dig.  One to watch, particularly if he keeps pushing himself to succeed. 

Thunder #10 Nathan Bohmer was a terror out there, scoring six unassisted goals, including the first of the game, a double unassisted hat trick, also picking up 2 assists.  #15 Austin Whelan got a hat trick.  #16 Chris Collings  scored twice and got an assist.  #14 Cole Wemp scored twice.  Also picking up assists were Kayden Olsen, Walker Jones, and Cole Tkachuk with 2 of them.

The Atom Chinooks have a home game against Picture Butte scheduled for 11:45 am on Saturday November 2.

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