Stettler Lightning had a weekend of disillusionment losing both of their games, 5-0 to Red Deer Vipers and 6-3 to Mountain View Colts.
On Friday, Oct. 9, Lightning took on Red Deer Vipers only to be wiped out and shut out.
“It was a pretty disappointing weekend for us,” said Gavin Brandl, head coach. “As coaching staff, we had these dates circled on our calendar as a good early indicator of where we stand within our division, but we didn’t compete at a level that would be acceptable in any situation.”
In the home game on Friday, Vipers kept the pressure on from the start and attacked the Lightning net relentlessly, scoring two goals in the first period, one in the second and two more in the third period.
Although the Lightning offence stepped up in the second and third periods, it was too late and without results.
On Saturday, Oct. 10 Lightning traveled to Didsbury for the game against Mountain View Colts with a low morale, but played a better game than Friday, even though they lost 6-3.
“I’ll give credit to both Mountain View and Red Deer, they used their size effectively to fill the lanes and nullify our speed game, made sure to cash in on their scoring chances and received solid goal-tending which prevented us from being able to really turn the momentum at any point,” added Brandl.
Praising the rookie goalkeeper Taylor MacLaughlin, Brandl said, “I will say that rookie goaltender Taylor MacLaughlin worked really hard all weekend to keep the boys in both games and it’s obvious that we are starting to get pretty comfortable with him in the crease for us.”
According to Brandl, Lightning’s biggest fault was a lack of willingness to create and maintain a “simple, straight line hockey play, ensuring that the game flowed in their direction”.
“We are going to tweak our lines and make a few strategic adjustments to get the chemistry back that we had earlier in the season,” continued Brandl as he commented on how Lightning would move forward after the losses they have suffered.
Lightning now play back-to-back home games, Friday, Oct. 16 against Banff and Saturday versus Strathmore.
“We have had strong home crowd support thus far, hopefully that continues and we will get this thing pointed back in the right direction!” said Brandl.