Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Solid tiering round performances from Atom Chinooks

Atom Chinooks vs Cochrane Rockies
Christian Davis - Pincher Creek's Atom Chinooks concluded their CAHL tiering round last weekend with a 6 win/2 loss record, scoring 88 goals and giving up 44 goals.

As reported here previously, the Chinooks defeated Piikani and were then defeated by Lethbridge in their first two games, which were both home games at Pincher Creek's Memorial Community Centre Arena.

The Chinooks travelled to Fort Macleod on Saturday October 22 to defeat the Mustangs 8-5.  The Chinooks established a 5-1 lead in the first period of that game, including a hat trick by Chinooks #16 Walker Anderson.  That first period performance ultimately secured them their win.  The Mustangs tied them 1-1 in the second, and outscored the Chinooks 3-2 in the final period.  Chinooks #12 Jaydon Draper also earned a hat trick in the game with a goal in each period,  and Anderson scored again in the third. Also scoring for the Chinooks was #2 Lane Conley.  Chinooks picking up assists were Draper (two of them), #23 Josey Wales Waterchief (two of them), and #11 Jaxon Shenton.  34 shots on Mustangs goalie #19 Teran Broderson compared to 25 on Chinooks goalie #26 Zackery Hann.

The Chinooks travelled to Taber the next day, where they were dealt their second defeat of the season, losing 10-3 after letting the second period get away from them in a major way.  Jaydon Draper scored twice for the Chinooks, Walker Anderson scored once.  Chinooks earning assists were Draper, Jaxon Shenton, #18 Jayden Price, #1 Talen Snow, and #3 Eric Radvak.  #30 Bowen Hann was in net for the Chinooks for this one, and faced 52 shots, compared to 22 faced by Taber's #31 Kahil Wright.

Chinooks' Walker Anderson with the puck in game against Cochrane Rockies
The Chinooks brought it back home on Saturday October 29 to host the Cochrane Rockies.  The Chinooks dominated the first period, with Draper and Anderson literally taking turns scoring 6 unanswered goals for a hat trick each.  The Rockies came out much stronger in the second, scoring three goals in the first 3/4 of the period before Jaydon Draper answered them with another for the Chinooks.  Then Josey Wales Waterchief took a turn, scoring with Draper assisting.  Another goal for Cochrane, and then another by Draper with just one second left in the period.  One more goal for the Chinooks by #2 Lane Conley in the third was icing on the cake.  Chinooks earning assists were Waterchief, Anderson, Draper, #15 Christian Potts, and #30 Bowen Hann. The Chinooks won it 10-4.

Zack Hann in Chinooks net vs Cochrane Rockies
Bowen Hann in Chinooks net vs Brooks Bandits
The next day they were on the road again, to defeat Chestermere 8-4. Five goals for Jaydon Draper. Two goals for Lane Conley. Chestermere's #15 Jaden Clarke also earned a hat trick. A goal for Chinooks #13 Varian Caldwell. Assists for Chinooks Draper, Waterchief, and Anderson. 32 shots on the Chestermere net. Bowen Hann face 23 shots in the Chinooks' net.
Chinooks vs Brooks Bandits
Back on home ice on Saturday November 5 the Chinooks faced tough competition from the Brooks Bandits.  This barnburner game could have gone either way, and several times it did, but the Chinooks prevailed to win it 8-6,  It was tied 6-6 after Brooks scored early in the third, but Jaydon Draper made good use of the power play to score what was ultimately the winning goal, with an assist from Jaxon Shenton.  Walker Anderson iced the cake with an unassisted power play goal with 7:38 remaining in the game.  Draper suffered an injurious thump with just 1:46 remaining that earned a Brooks player a boarding penalty.  He was back in top form for the next day's game, apparently.  Anderson scored four goals for the Chinooks, Draper earned a hat trick too and an assist.  Jaxon Shenton also scored for the Chinooks, but for me the story here was his dynamic teamwork and skating/puck math skills, for which he also earned three assists.  Indeed, the most notable thing for me in this game was seeing the Chinooks team skating so well, and working so fluidly as a unit.  32 shots on the mighty Bowen Hann in the Chinooks net, and 42 on Brooks' goalie #1 Hael Maxwell-Lyster, who put on a bit of a clinic and was a major asset to his team, as was the Bandits' passing play in front of the Pincher net.  When the Bandits are "on" they're a real force to be reckoned with, judging from this game.  The Chinooks reckoned.

The next day the Chinooks headed to High Country for their last tiering round game, and won it by a wide margin.  Anderson and Draper added hat tricks (and then some) to their already overflowing hat-trick collections, Jaxon Shenton scored twice, and Varian Caldwell scored once.

This weekend the Chinooks head to Claresholm for an invitational tournament.  Next week the CAHL regular season begins.

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