The Huskies came out flying in the opening stanza with three goals before the ten minute mark, while adding a fourth with 5:25 left in the period. Assistant coach Todd Alexander says the team played well in the corners which forced Dawson Creek into making pressure plays.
“I think our forecheck went right tonight, we’ve been working on that the past little bit and it showed up, it’s hard on defensemen, especially at the start of the year,” Alexander explains. “They haven’t got down the pick the puck up off the boards, or the speed that’s coming at them quite yet, so I think we took advantage of that real well which caused some good turnovers.”
The game did see its chippy moments, especially at the conclusion of the second period when third line centre Owen Barker ate a couple of still shots from Mitch Palfi of the Junior Canucks, which led to a seven minute powerplay for the Huskies to begin the third. Alexander credits the team’s identity for not retaliating and avoiding penalties after the play.
“It’s part of our pedigree, I think we’re a hockey team that likes to play hard in between whistles, then when it’s over we stay out of the junk,” he says. “We’re not interested in that, sometimes what happens, happens, but for the most part we like to play a hard nosed game when the game’s on because anybody can do that after the whistle.”
The point getters for Fort St. John included Brighton Campbell who had a goal and two helpers, Lien Miller-Jennotte chipped in with an assist, Jordan Gies had a goal and an assist, Blair Karasiuk got on the score sheet with an assist, Cayle Bell chimed in with a goal, defenceman John Apsassin had a goal off of a point shot, and an assist, Cole Calliou had a hat trick, Shawn Holliday did his part with an assist, Owen Barker also had an assist, as did Daylen Pearson and Sean Ryder. The Huskies also had two powerplay goals, while registering 40 shots in the contest. Goalie Travis McLean was solid, stopping 32 of 35 shots.
The Huskies next game will see them on the road as they take on Beaverlodge on September 27, before returning for the home opener at North Peace Arena the following day against Slave Lake.