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Tough weekend for Eagles at Showcase

A deadly power play and strong goaltending is exactly what’s needed to shine in front of scouts during the AJHL showcase weekend.

A deadly power play and strong goaltending is exactly what’s needed to shine in front of scouts during the AJHL showcase weekend.

Too bad the Canmore Eagles were on the receiving end of both last weekend, dropping a 7-1 decision to the Grande Prairie Storm and a 4-2 decision against the Bonnyville Pontiacs on Friday (Sept. 28) and Saturday (Sept. 29) respectively.

“I thought we played really well. Against Grande Prairie we had some nerves and didn’t have our best start. We chased our tail for most of the game and it didn’t come out the way we wanted,” said Andrew Milne.

The Eagles’ fortunes were sealed at the beginning of the third period when Nils Moser was assessed nine minutes in penalties. Grande Prairie scored three goals on the ensuing power play.

“I’ve never seen that call in my life. It doesn’t matter who you are, you’re not going to win hockey games when you’re down for nine minutes,” Milne said.

The league later rescinded the call, however, the loss still stands in the record book.

“We thought that was tough to take.”

The Eagles rebounded against Bonnyville, but still ended up dropping a 4-2 decision.

“Our guys came out guns blazing. We really took it to them and set the standard for our work ethic,” Milne said.

The Eagles will try to get back to their winning ways at home on Saturday (Oct. 6) against the Calgary Canucks.

“Calgary will be a big game for us. We did win in their building already and they’re a team others take lightly at times,” Milne said.

To do that, the Eagles will rely on strong play from two homegrown heroes, John Stevens and Luke Simpson. Milne singled out both for strong play.

“John Stevens is playing really well. He’s brought his level up everywhere. We’re really happy with how well he’s playing right now,” Milne said. “Luke Simpson was outstanding against Bonnyville. We’re confident if we play the same way, we’ll be successful.”

The Eagles want to get back to their quick starts, which have been the key to their success of late. They play in Olds Friday night (Oct. 5) which will be a tough divisional match-up.

“We know Olds works their tails off. We have to make sure they don’t get into our head and stop them from intimidating us. If we play the same way we did against Bonnyville, we’ll be successful,” Milne said. “We started our four wins really strong and I think that’s a sign for us.”

Rocky Mountain Outlook

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