By Cole Parkinson
Sunny South News
Snow is on the ground as the hockey season is in full force. The Coaldale Copperheads were back in action this past weekend as teams across the Heritage Junior B Hockey League are battling for position.
This past weekend saw two games on tap for the Snakes as they looked to climb their way up the Southern Division standings. The weekend saw a tough first rest as Coaldale took on the division-leading Okotoks Bisons. In the first period, Okotoks had the icebreaker in the first minute of the game as the home team took a quick lead. The Snakes answered back 16 minutes later off the stick of Kaden Booth from Krishan Stocker and Koden Lazar. The Bisons would score the third goal of the game a few minutes later to retake a one-goal lead. With only 19 seconds left, the Snakes would find a tying goal as Jasper Lyle found the back of the net as Cole Almusa and Sean Burns collected an assist each.
Coming out of the first break with a tie, the Bisons would strike first yet again with a goal in the first five minutes. Near the end of the period, Brandon Creighton was awarded a penalty shot and the forward capitalized tying the game at 3-3, which held until the second intermission.
In the third period, the Bisons continued to score early in the period as they potted their fourth goal of the game just under two minutes in. Despite firing 13 periods on net in the third, the Snakes were unable to find a tying goal and they fell 4-3. Aidan Low got the start in net for Coaldale and the netminder made 28 saves on 32 shots. Overall, the Snakes would outshoot Okotoks 34-32. The Copperheads went 0-5 on the power play and 1-1 on the penalty kill.
With a tough finish in game one of the weekend, the Copperheads were hopeful to rebound at home with the Medicine Hat Cubs in town. Medicine Hat would come out firing with a pair of goals to take a 2-0 lead. With under a minute to go in the period, Kale Amundrud would score the first Coaldale goal with Creighton and Brogan Booth drawing the assists. The period would end shortly later and Medicine Hat would carry a 2-1 lead into the middle frame.
Early in the second, James Halverson would score the Copperheads’ second goal as Nathan Verloop and Amundrud would get the assists. A few minutes later though, the Cubs would retake the one-goal lead. No other scoring would come for either team in the rest of the period, and the Copperheads found themselves down by a goal heading into the final period.
The first half of the period saw no scoring, but the Snakes would continue to push for the tying goal. With under seven minutes to play, they would find that goal off of Derrien Tonin’s stick while Stocker and Rylen Kleist had the assists. No other goals would come and the Cubs and Copperheads went into sudden death overtime. In the extra frame, the Cubs would find the back of the net first and take a 4-3 win.
Nixon Ordway got the start for the Copperheads and the goalie made 24 saves on 28 shots while the Copperheads fired 22 at the Medicine Hat netminder. The Copperheads went 1-3 on the power play and 1-2 on the penalty kill.
Another two-pack is in store for the Snakes this coming weekend as they host a pair of home games. On Saturday, the Sylvan Lake Wranglers come to Coaldale for an 8 p.m. puck drop. Sunday evening sees the Strathmore Wheatland Kings with game time at 5 p.m. The Copperheads currently sit in last place in the Southern Division with a 4-9-1 record and nine points.
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