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Copperheads head into the break in third place in the South Division

Posted on December 24, 2023 by Sunny South News

By Garrett Simmons
Sunny South News

The Coaldale Copperheads head into the Christmas break after a weekend that included a gift and a lump of coal.

Friday’s gift was a 4-1 win over the Airdrie Thunder, in a game where the visiting Copperheads stormed back from an early deficit to score four unanswered goals.

The lump of coal came Saturday via a 7-2 loss to the Okotoks Bisons, in a home-ice defeat where the visitors filled Santa’s sack with three goals in the first and second periods.

Coaldale’s win over Airdrie was a complete victory that saw Airdrie strike first before Bill Houenagnon got Coaldale on the board with a goal assisted by Griffin McCulloch. Brinley Degenstein put the Copperheads up 2-1 before the first frame was up, as McCulloch added his second helper of the period.

Landon Howg made it 3-1 with a goal in the second period, as Brandon Creighton and Rhett Klemen drew assists, before Caden Heins ended the scoring with a goal of his own. Creighton and Nathan Verloop picked up assists on that marker.

Coaldale outshot Airdrie 34-33 in the game, and finished 0/4 on the powerplay. Airdrie also failed to capitalize on its four powerplays.

Kaiden Fulton picked up the win in net for the Copperheads.

Saturday was a different story, as Houenagnon scored an unassisted goal to give Coaldale the lead. The advantage was short lived, and Okotoks scored three goals to end the first frame and added three more in the middle period.

Another goal in the third made it 7-1 for the Bisons before Peyton Twigg scored for Coaldale, as Heins and Verloop drew assists.

Okotoks fired 42 shots at the Coaldale net, as the Copperheads responded with a 21-shot effort. The home side went 1/5 on the powerplay and Okotoks was 0/1 with the man advantage.

Nixon Ordway was busy in net for the Copperheads.

Coaldale will be back in action on Jan. 6, when the Copperheads host the High River Flyers. On Jan. 7 the team will travel to Medicine Hat.

After a 1-1 weekend, Coaldale sits in third place in the South Division with 37 points, and an 18-6-1 record. The team’s .740 win percentage is fourth best in the entire league, behind the South Division leader Okotoks, the North Division leader Sylvan Lake and Medicine Hat. The Cubs have a .771 winning percentage, as the Hat club also has 37 points, with a 17-4-3 record.

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