This past Tuesday evening the Eagles travelled to the other side of Edmonton to face off against the Fort Saskatchewan Chiefs in a weekday battle. When it comes to the playoff seeding and the race for second place, it was a huge matchup both clubs. The Eagles looked to carry forward the great momentum from the previous Saturday’s 7-3 win over the league leading Lacombe Generals.
Carry momentum forward into this one was exactly what happened as the Eagles came out firing on all cylinders right from the drop of the puck. The Fort Saskatchewan Chiefs starting netminder Ryan Demharter was the star of the first period as he thwarted numerous offensive flurries from the Eagles. Despite Demharter’s best efforts the Eagles were able to pace themselves to a two goal lead before the game was 14 minutes old. Riley Miller got the party started as he sifted a shot through Demharter on a great cross-ice feed from Gallimore. Gallimore continued the scoring as he buried one of his own with 6:04 remaining in the first period. Before the Eagles could take a two goal lead into the intermission, the Chiefs struck back with 3:23 remaining in the period, as Baumgartner was able to jump on a loose puck and beat Marozzi. Despite the single goal in the first period, the Eagles netminder Vinny Marozzi continued his recent strong play as he made a stops that were of the highlight reel variety. Eagles took a 2-1 lead into the period and didn’t look back.
There was not much scoring in the 2nd period, but the physical side of the game was very evident with many big hits, with the biggest being a huge hit from Eagles defencemen Miller who caught a Chief’s forward with his head down along the wall. Miller received an elbowing penalty on the play. It was pretty clear that neither of these teams were going to back down. Bryce Williamson was able to score shorthanded on the Miller penalty as he was able to convert in front of Demharter, Chorneyko and Smyth picked up assists on the play. The Eagles would carry a 3-1 lead into the 2nd intermission despite being outshot 28-24 by the Chiefs.
The third period was a wide open period as both teams were able to collect 15 shots each in the period, needless to say that each of the goalies were on top of their game. Williamson scored his second of the game, and boy oh boy, highlight reel goal is an understatement, he collected the puck and took on two Chiefs, he delayed a bit, went forehand backhand and drove wide to his backhand side, as he cut to the net all it took was a flick of the wrist and he went high blocker, short side on Demharter. There was seemingly no room, but he was able to find it! Eagles were up 4-1 at this point. Kieran Block was also able to add to the lead as he blew one low blocker on Demharter with 3:13 to go in the game. On the block goal, Andrew Estey collected his first point as a Stony Plain Eagle in his 1st ever game.
Eagles took this one by a final score of 5-1 despite giving up 43 shots against the Chiefs. The next meeting between these two will be a bit of a feisty affair, as tempers began to flare up at the end of the 3rd period.