Coming off a week of straight losses, the Lightning needed a few wins to recover their verve, and found them in Mountain View and Banff with wins of 4-1 and 8-2, respectively.
The action started in Didsbury on Saturday, Oct. 11, where the Lightning kept the puck out of their own net for the first two periods.
“We thought they were a bit of a free-wheeling team,” General Manager and Head Coach Doug Smith said. “We saw they had scored a lot of goals but they’d also given up a lot.”
With that in mind, the team played a strong defensive line, shutting down the Mountainview Colts, while keeping its offensive line on the go.
Jake Bottomley opened the game for Stettler, slipping the puck past the Colts’ netminder with just less than eight minutes gone into the first. It was followed less than a minute later by a goal by assistant captain Adam Ternes.
The Lightning continued to strike, with the third goal coming a minute into the second period, this time at the hands of Dylan Houston.
“Sticking to the plan helped,” Smith said, saying that the team did a lot of checking that kept the Colts in their paddock.
It wasn’t until the third period that the Colts broke free, getting a goal past netminder Simon Thieleman.
However, it was the only one Thieleman let past, and after another goal by Ternes, the game came to a successful 4-1 end for Stettler.
The weekend wasn’t done, so the boys travelled to Banff to compete against the Banff Bears on Sunday, Oct. 12.
It was another morale-building trouncing handed out by the Lightning, as the team again kept the Bears from scoring until the third period.
“Banff was another team that scored points, but gave up a lot too, so the formula was the same,” Smith said.
The first period came to a close with neither team scoring, but the Lightning burst onto the ice on the second period and started pummelling the Bears’ goalie.
About a minute-and-a-half into the second, Bottomley scored, followed about four minutes later by Mark Dietz, the team’s captain. Bottomley returned to haunt the Bears’ netminder, scoring again, before Michael Neumeier scored the last goal of the second, again for Stettler.
Banff got the jump on the Lightning in the third, scoring its first goal about four minutes into the third, but the Lightning answered with a goal from Dylan Houston on a powerplay about three minutes later.
Taking advantage of numbers after Matt Johannson ended up in the penalty box for high sticking, the Bears’ scored its last goal of the game against Jordan McCallum – which was answered by two shorthanded goals from Reese Anheliger and Brendan Polson.
Houston sent home the last goal of the night, closing the rink down 8-2.
Stettler next plays in Ponoka on Wednesday, Oct. 15, and then in Red Deer on Saturday, Oct. 18. On Oct. 19, the Lightning come back to home ice for a Sunday matinee game, starting at 3:30 p.m.