Handy Sports Rag
|"Serving the Sporting Community of Central Alberta"|
defeated in hard fought battles
In Heritage Junior Hockey League action played last week in Didsbury,
the Mountainview Colts were on the wrong end of the scoreboard in two
hard fought battles.
Saturday Dec. 18, the defending league champions, Red Deer Vipers
defeated the Colts 5-2 and on Sun. Dec. 19, the Three Hills Thrashers
pulled off a 5-4 victory.
Against the Vipers, the Colts battled hard for over fifty minutes of
play. After the first period, on a goal by Brent Foord, the Vipers held
a slim 1-0 lead.
Foord blinked the red light in the second period, giving the Vipers a
2-0 margin after forty minutes of play.
Early in the third period, Adam Martinson notched a pair of goals for
the Colts deadlocking the game at two goals apiece. With seven minutes
to play, the Vipers potent offensive threat got on track netting three
unanswered goals to solidify the victory. Foord completed his natural
hat trick with a power play marker. Other Vipers marksmen to dent the
twine in the final stanza were Ryan Kure and Mark Volper. Two of
the Vipers' third period goals were scored on the power play, which
broke the Colts' backs.
"Actually the game against the Vipers was very entertaining,"
said Colts' Head Coach, Darcy Austin.
"Up to the final five minutes of play, we matched the Vipers shift
for shift," Austin added.
According to Austin, the game instilled some confidence in the Colts as
they were competitive against the Vipers for the entire game.
"Considering we were defeated by the Vipers quite handily in the
first game we played, the players now know we can be competitive against
them," Austin added.
"I would say this game was a confidence builder," Austin
Prior to the game, the Colts activated two players from the Rocky
Mountain Midget AAA Lightning to shore up a depleted roster.
"Actually the two midget players played really well," Austin
said, noting the Colts have an excellent relationship with the
"This was a game we definitely had the opportunity to win,"
Austin said, indicating the Vipers got lucky on a pair of goals.
Although the Vipers are known for their offensive power, Austin
indicated they played a very good defensive contest against the
"They (Vipers) gave us very few good scoring opportunities,"
Between the pipes, Troy Schwandt turned in a steady performance blocking
37 shots. Vipers' netminder, Mark Horsely made 23 saves.
Against the Thrashers, John Regher notched the winning goal in overtime
clinching the Thrashers' victory.
In a game which saw the momentum swing on virtually every shift change,
the teams were deadlocked at two goals apiece after twenty minutes of
play. Adam Martinson and Will Harvie dented the twine for the Colts with
Andy Milligan and Ryan Campbell replying for the Thrashers.
After forty minutes of play, the Thrashers held a narrow 4-3 lead as
Campbell notched his second goal of the game and Dan Panelli's singleton
rounded out the Thrashers' scoring in the middle frame.
Late in the third period, Martinson added his second goal of the game
notching the contest at four goals apiece.
Schwandt played another strong game tending the net as he made 47 saves,
many of them on the spectacular side. Meanwhile, Thrashers goalie, Gary
Congaware made 31 saves.
Because the Colts are chasing the Thrashers for a play off spot in the
northern division, Austin indicated a point slipped away.
"This was a game we needed badly," said Austin, noting the
Colts hold their own destiny in making post season play.
"Fourteen of our remaining twenty games are against teams from our
division," Austin said.
"If we're going to make the play offs, we need victories against
these teams," Austin concluded.
bench boss praises netminders
Despite dressing just thirteen players for two recent weekend league
games, Mountainview Colts' bench boss, Darcy Austin noticed a
significant improvement in the team's play especially in the
Both games were on the road down south in Medicine Hat against the Cubs
and in Lethbridge against the Southern Express.
When the weary road hands arrived back in Didsbury, they held their
heads high as they earned a split, defeating the Express 7-6 and losing
a heartbreaker 5-3 to the Cubs.
In both games the goaltenders were bombarded with plenty of rubber as
both the Express and the Cubs directed over fifty shots in each game.
Against the Express, Matt Macleod turned aside fifty-five shots in
backstopping the Colts' victory. Meanwhile, in Medicine Hat, the Cubs
blasted Macleod with twenty-nine shots in thirty minutes. He eventually
gave way to Troy Schwandt mid way through the second period. Schwandt
handled twenty-one shots.
"Our goaltending was simply outstanding in both games," said
Colts' Head Coach, Darcy Austin.
As a former netminder, Austin can relate to what the Colts goaltenders
went through during the games and the praise bestowed upon them came
directly from the heart.
"Because only thirteen skaters were dressed for the games, our
goaltenders didn't get much support," Austin added.
"But give the players credit, they never gave up, they battled
right to the bitter end," noted Austin.
Although the Colts relinquished a lot of shots during the games, Austin
indicated most of them came from the outside and around the perimeter.
"I thought our forwards did a decent job in covering the points and
our defense for the most part was able to keep the crease clean,"
added Austin noticing the netminders had a clear view of the majority of
"It was a gritty effort in both games," Austin said.
Against the Express at the Nicolas Sheran Arena, the Colts scored three
unanswered goals in the final seven minutes to skate away with the
All three third period goals came off the stick of Ryan Kallis, who
added an earlier goal in the second period. Rounding out the scoring for
the Colts with singletons were Cody Edwards, Chad Glazer and Anthony
For the Express Jason Lachance blinked the red light twice with Chris
Gerla, Taylor Baranuk, Brady Erino and Axel Sorenson denting the twine
for a goal apiece.
James Belisle blocked twenty-seven shots in the Express net.
In Medicine Hat, the Cubs jumped out to a 3-0 first period lead as Mitch
Serr with a singleton and Clay Ward with a pair accounted for the
Cubs scoring in the first stanza.
At the conclusion of the second period, the Cubs held a 4-1 margin as
Tom Pollard scored for the Cubs and Scott Murphy replied for the Colts.
After Ryan Gilchrist increased the Cubs lead to 5-1 midway through
the third stanza, the Colts closed the margin to 5-3 as Cody Edwards and
Ryan Kallis blinked the red light with power play markers.
"We were able to turn the momentum around in the third period with
the power play goals, but it was a little to late as the clock ran out
on us," Austin noted.
Offensively, Austin was pleased with the Colts play and noted with a few
breaks and the right bounce of the puck they could've had a couple more
Despite being outplayed, the Colts forwards were able to gain scoring
chances through puck movement and tenacious forechecking.
"When we play as a team and control the puck by passing it
around offensive opportunities are created," explained Austin.
"But when we play as individuals, nothing happens
offensively," Austin added.
This week, the Colts entertain the Okotoks Bisons on Sat. Dec. 11 and travel to Ponoka to take on the Stampeders on Sun. Dec. 12.
offence explodes against Ponoka Stampeders
When the final buzzer sounded ending the Heritage Junior Hockey League
game between the Mountainview Colts and the Ponoka Stampeders, played on
Sat. Nov.6, the Stampeders left town with their tail between their legs.
In exploding for nine goals, the Colts offensive attack was clicking on
every aspect of their game as they demolished the Stampeders 9-1 before
noisy crowd at the Didsbury Recreation Complex.
"We needed a big game offensively to restore the player's
confidence," said Colts Head Coach, Darcy Austin, noting the
players were a bit frustrated about their seasonal offensive output.
"They were feeling pretty good about themselves after the game
against Ponoka," he added.
According to Austin, offensively prior to the game against the
Stampeders, the Colts were not playing badly as they had scoring
opportunities in every game played but the puck wasn't bouncing right
"No matter how hard the players tried, the puck wasn't going in for
them" Austin said.
Saturday's game was a different story as they blinked the red light with
consistency notching three goals in each period.
Leading the onslaught of goals with a pair each were Scott Murphy and
Jeff Clazie. Singletons were added by Ryan Kallis, Anthony Greer, Ian
Brander, Dale Norton and Matt Lowry.
Colts' goalie, Matt McLoed played a strong game between the pipes,
flirting with a shutout for over fifty minutes. Adam Koehler was the
only Stampeders' sniper to blink the red light behind McLoed.
Although the score was lopsided, the play on the ice was fairly even as
the Colts directed thirty-five shots at Stampeders' goalie, David Reekie
and the Stampeders managed thirty-one shots at McLoed.
"McLoed certainly gave us the opportunity for the win, he was
pretty steady," Austin said.
"He (McLeod) made some big saves early in the game when it was
close," added Austin.
Besides exhibiting an offensive threat, Austin seemed happy with the
"Our defense did a good job in front of the net in clearing out the
crease giving Matt a clear view of the shots," Added Austin.
Four of the goals came on the power play, while one was scored short
Our power play is improving every game. Against the Stampeders we kept
it pretty simple, controlling the puck and shooting at every
opportunity," added Austin.
While killing penalties, Austin indicated the penalty killers are
keeping pressure on the puck and are forcing some turn overs.
After traveling to Ponoka for a rematch on Tuesday Nov. 9, the Colts
will host the defending league champions, Red Deer Vipers, on Friday,
Nov.12 and the Airdrie Thunder on Saturday, Nov. 13. They wrap up a week
of play in Stettler on Sunday, Nov. 14 and in Lacombe on Tuesday. Nov.
"These up coming games will give us the opportunity to move up in
the standings, there's ten points in the next seven days up for
grabs," Austin said.
With the improvement in their game, the Colts now have 10 points with a
record of five wins and five defeats.
defensive play improving
With a 7-4 victory over the Masdowacis
Attack in Hobbema, the Mountainview Colts defensive play is showing
signs of improvement.
As the game progressed, Colts' Head Coach, Darcy Austin, noticed little
things the defensemen were doing to keep the Attack's offensive threat
from capitalizing on turn-overs.
According to Austin, the Colts' defensemen are starting to win the
battle along the boards and in front of the net.
"The thing I have noticed the most is our defensemen are getting
the puck out of our own end a lot faster," said Austin.
"Earlier in the season, our defense was content on just shooting
the puck out, but now they are carrying it out more often and jumping
into the play offensively," Austin added.
With the return of a couple veteran defenseman to the line-up, the
pressure is off the rookie blue liners noted Austin.
As the season progresses, Austin expects the first year players will
gain more confidence and the Colts goals against will be reduced.
"At the beginning of the season we were not protecting our
goaltenders," Austin added.
However, in the past two games, the Colts have allowed just thirty shots
a game, another vast improvement.
And with the addition of Matt McLeod from the Three Hills Thrashers, the
Colts have two veteran goalies. Troy Schwandt has handled much of the
workload between the pipes for the Colts.
In the game against the Attack, McLeod was solid in net making thirty
saves and Austin was pleased with his performance.
And besides stopping the puck, McLeod brings another dimension to his
game as he handles the puck well.
Because most teams are content with dumping the puck into the opposition
end, Austin feels the Colts have a better opportunity of moving the puck
with a puck handling netminder.
In Hobbema, Scott Murphy and Ryan Kallis netted two goals apiece with
singletons being added by Ian Brander, Brandan Hastie and Jeff Clazie.
For the Attack, Ryan Buffalo blinked the red light twice with Nelson
Daychief and Ryan Potts rounding out the scoring.
"I thought we controlled the play against the Attack as we held the
territorial advantage," Austin said.
"Their goalie played very well and kept the score respectful"
In Didsbury on Sat. Oct. 30, the Lacombe Wranglers defeated the Colts
The Colts goal came off the stick of Jeff Clazie while Tanner Stock,
Jarod Jequo, Ryan Lodermier, Cody Anderson and Kyle Krustbanen replied
for the Wranglers.
"We had lots of chances against the Wranglers but couldn't put the
puck in the net," said Austin.
"Because forth place in the Northern Division is up for grabs
between us, the Wranglers and the Ponoka Stampeders , we needed a win
against the Wranglers," noted Austin.
When the Colts broke training camp, the team set a goal at making the playoffs and Austin believes they will be there at the conclusion of the season.
Colts corral a
pair of victories
In recent Heritage Junior Hockey League action, the Mountain View Colts
were able to corral a pair of victories a 9-6 win over the Siksika Ice
and a convincing 9-1victory over the Livingstone Rockmen.
Against the Rockmen, the Colts dominated the game in every aspect firing
forty-three shots at Rockmen netminder, Curtis Butler.
Chalking up a pair of goals apiece for the Colts were Scott Murphy, Ryan
Kallis and Will Harvie. Singletons came off the sticks of Jeff Clazier,
Garrett Wenskowski and Cody Edwards.
Meanwhile, Bradley Holtz dampened Tyler Rockwell's bid for a shut-out
putting the Rockmen on the scoreboard early in the first period.
At the Deerfoot Centre in Calgary, Jeff Clazier notched a hat trick to
pace the Colts offensively in the win over the Ice. Ryan Kallis
blinked the red light twice with singletons being added by Tyson
Gardner, Scott Murphy, Matt Lowry and Brandon Hatsie.
For the Ice, Clint Sitting Eagle dented the twine twice, with Brennan
Breaker, Garrett Many Bears, Brandie Dore and Jonah Jerry
rounding out the scoring.
In running up the score, the Colts peppered Ice goalie, Kyle Running
Bear with forty-eight shots, most of them on the power play.
Although not as busy, Colts' netminder, Troy Schwandt, was steady
throughout the entire game making thirty-eight saves.
"Actually, Siksika had a pretty chippy team and we had lots of
chances on the power play," said Colts Head Coach, Darcy Austin,
indicating the Colts scored three goals with the man advantage.
"Give our players credit, they were well disciplined during the
game and failed to retaliate when they received a cheap shot from the
Siksika players," added Austin.
"Our discipline was definitely the difference in the game,"
Although the Colts filled the net on a consistent basis in the games,
Austin indicated all four lines contributed in the scoring.
"So far this season, our lines are fairly balanced and we have a
good representation between veteran and rookie players on all the
lines," added Austin.
Despite having just two wins in league action, Austin indicated the
Colts deserve a better fate than what their record indicates noting with
a little bit of luck and the right bounce of the puck, the Colts could
easily have three wins as they lost a 4-3 heartbreaker to the Lacombe
Wranglers at the Didsbury Recreation Centre on Saturday, Oct.16.
In the final eight minutes of the game, the Colts were pressuring the
Wranglers in their own end forcing them to turn over the puck on
numerous occasions resulting in several glorious scoring opportunities,
which went array.
"We just couldn't buy a goal in the final minutes of the
game," Austin said.
"The players were pretty frustrated at the end of the game because
we played good enough to earn a win," Austin said.
"But I am not too concerned because there were more positives than
negatives to take away from this game," Austin noted.
"We have a lot of good things to take away from it and we can build
on these," concluded Austin.
Goal scorers in the game were not known at press time.
bench boss will be patient with young team
As the Heritage Junior Hockey League swings into action for another
season, Mountainview Colts' bench boss, Darcy Austin realizes he will
have to be patient with the young players.
"This season we have only five veteran players returning, so it
will take some time before the younger players start feeling comfortable
with each other," said Austin, after the Colts' home opener in
Didsbury on Sunday, Oct. 3 against the Banff Icemen.
Three unanswered goals in the second period by the Icemen broke a close
3-2 game wide open and enabled Banff to skate away with a 7-5 victory
before a large crowd at the Didsbury Memorial Complex.
"Our inexperience was evident in the game," Austin added.
In the first period, Matt Collinge and Will Harvie dented the
twine for the Colts with Brad Meyers, Harry Maheshi and Bryce Platt
replying for the Icemen.
Maheshi and Platt added their second goals of the game in the second
period while Luke Irwin rounded out the three goal Icemen outburst in
the second stanza.
Despite goals off the sticks of Collinge and Ian Brander in the third
period, the Colts were unable to close the gap on the scoreboard and as
a result they suffered their second consecutive loss in early season
According to Austin, the Colts ran into penalty problems in the second
stanza and the icemen took advantage of the extra man situation by
denting the twine for two power play goals.
"There is no doubt the penalties and our defensive play hurt us in
the game," Austin added.
A community based team, the Colts have a solid base of local players on
the squad as the majority of the players played minor hockey in
Carstairs, Didsbury, Olds and Sundre.
Although this is Austin's first year at the helm of the Colts, he is
familiar with the talented pool of hockey players within the County of
Mountainview and he plans to use this to his advantage.
"Most of these players have played with and against each other in
minor hockey, so they do know each other," Austin added.
"Because they come from different minor hockey organizations, their
philosophies about the game are varied and different," added
"Right now, it's my job to get them playing on the same page,"
he added, indicating this will take some time and preparation.
As the season progresses, Austin expects the team to mature and improve
and he believes the Colts are legitimate play off contenders.
When the team broke training camp in preparation for the 2004/2005
Heritage Junior Hockey League season, Austin noted the players set a
team goal of qualifying for post season play.
And the players have previously tasted success as some of them were
members of the Didsbury Midgets when they won the Midget A Central
Alberta Minor Hockey Association league championship two years in a row.
According to Austin, the Colts have an excellent working relationship
with Didsbury, Olds, Carstairs and Sundre Minor Hockey Associations and
in the next weeks he hopes to cement relations with the Rocky Mountain
Midget AAA Lightning, members of the Rural Alberta Midget AAA Hockey
"I am quite impressed with the Lightning as I have had the
opportunity to watch them practice, it looks like they have an excellent
team" Austin added.
Because the Lightning play their games on the weekends and most of them
conflict with the Colts schedule, Austin is not sure how much playing
time the Colts can offer to the Lightning players.
"During the year, I will keep in touch with them (Lightning) and
hopefully we can use a few of their players later on in the
season," Austin added.
Also, the Colts work closely with the Didsbury Minor Hockey Association
and they have affiliated five players from the Didsbury Midgets.
"It is important to keep the lines of communications open with the
local Midget teams and the Olds Grizzlys," noted Austin.
When the Grizzlys make their final cuts, Austin is hoping one or more of
the cut players will opt to finish the hockey season with the Colts.
On Saturday, Oct. 2, the Colts trekked into Airdrie and were defeated by
the Thunder 9-2.
Brad Roessler, the league's leading scorer, blinked the red light four times for the Thunder with Padrouck Stables, John Roedler, Tyler Reid Adam Schaffer and Curtis Anka adding singletons. For the Colts, Wade Ogle dented the twine twice.
looking for Junior hockey players
several years, the Mountain View Colts have offered area Junior hockey
players the opportunity of playing close to home.
the opening face-off of the Heritage Junior Hockey League just a few
weeks away, the Colts are preparing for league play with the opening of
their Fall Camp in Carstairs commencing on Sept. 8th.
welcoming area players from the ages of 17-20 years to come and try-out
for the team," said Colts' General Manager, Doug Brander.
to Brander, all positions are open on the team and he is anticipating an
excellent turn-out for the Fall Camp.
year we are anticipating on putting a competitive team on the ice,"
every indication, several veteran players have indicated they are
willing to don the Colts uniform for another year. The veteran core of
players will give the Colts an excellent nucleus to build a contending
compliment the veterans, Brander is anticipating a good crop of rookie
players to crack the Colts line-up.
are some excellent hockey players graduating from the Midget teams in
the area and I hope they decide to play their Junior hockey with
us," added Brander.
started as the Carstairs Colts, the team changed it's name to the
Mountain View Colts a few years ago and now divides their home games
between Carstairs and Didsbury.
most of our players live within the Mountain View County area, the name
change reflects our image better," added Brander.
the years we have drawn players from Olds, Carstairs, Didsbury and
Sundre. Before Three Hills and Drumheller were accepted into the league,
we drew some excellent players from the east country," Brander
Airdrie and Cochrane have teams participating in the league, the Colts
have had very few players from the south country play for them.
season, the Heritage Junior Hockey League is operating with fifteen
teams and will operate with three equal divisions, North, Central and
south. The Colts are slated to play in the Central division against
Three Hills, Drumheller, Red Deer and Airdrie.
expect the Central Division will be very competitive. Over the years, we
have developed a good rivalry with Airdrie," Brander added.
the Colts head into league play commencing on October 3rd, they will hit
the ice with eight nights of conditioning and a series of exhibition
are slated to be made after the exhibition games.
Waiting has indicated he will return for another season behind the
Colts' bench. Currently, the team is looking for an Assistant Coach, an
Assistant Manager, a Trainer and people to help at the home games.
we are looking for people to serve on the executive," added
intention is to provide the players with an opportunity to play
competitive Junior hockey in a fun and relaxed atmosphere,"
interested players, the cost of the Fall Camp is $80.00 per player. all
players must be paid in full and registered before camp begins.
interested in playing for the Colts or assisting as a volunteer please
contact Doug Brander at 335-4567 or 540-4557.