Winning the McKenzie Cup will not be an easy task for the Fort St. John Flyers.
At Thursday’s opening game of the tournament, the Flyers experienced a level of hockey that they had yet to encountered this year, playing a very skilled, hard hitting team in the Bentley Generals. Game one did not go as planned for the Flyers, who were shut out by the Generals by a score of 4-0.
Fort St. John found themselves down 1-0 early in game one, as Bentley’s Jason Lundmark scored 3:19 seconds into the opening frame. Lundmark’s goal would prove to be the eventual game winner. He also chipped in with two assists in the game.
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The second period began with the Flyers down 2-0. Unfortunately, the second shared similar results to the first, as Bentley scored two more goals on Flyers netminder Clayton Pool. The second period concluded with fort St. John facing a 4-0 deficit.
No scoring took place in the third period, which resulted in Generals goalie Scott Galenza recording a shutout in the opening game, making 24 saves in the win.
Although, what the frame lacked in goals, it made up for in intensity and physicality. Both teams seemed content with the rough stuff, constantly finishing their checks, with scrums ensuing after almost every whistle.
The physical nature of the game seemed to bring about a slew of infractions. Fort St. John were assessed six penalties in game one, while the Generals found themselves in the box on ten different occasions.
Due to the large number of penalties, special teams proved to be a very important factor in the game, one which Fort St. John was unable to capitalize on. While the Generals scored twice out of six power play attempts, Fort St. John went 0-10 with the man advantage, an issue that needs to be addresses for the remainder of the tournament.
The Generals now lead the best-of-five series 1-0. Game two will take place Friday at 6 p.m. Catch all the live action on 100.1 Moose FM and make sure to tune into the informative pre-game show with Mike Feeney. The pre-game show begins at 5:45.
Tune in to see if Fort St. John can even up the series.
Goal – Jason Lundmark Assists – Darryl Laplante, Travis Brigley (3:19)
Goal – (PP) Don Morrison Assists – Lundmark, Brigley (13:49)
Goal – (PP) Laplante Assists – Brigley, Lundmark (4:36)
Goal – Paul Cabana Assists – Morrison, Brandin Cote (16:13)