The team has outscored the opposition 24-7 through three games, and General Manager Vince Pedersen credits the early season success to how well the players get along with one another.
“I think it’s just the way everybody’s been playing; they’ve been playing really well together,” he says. It’s something that’s needed; it’s gelling. Everybody’s gelling together in the dressing room and out of the dressing room. They’re coming together.”
One of the main reasons the Huskies have been able to limit the amount of chances surrendered has to do with the defensive system that’s keeping opposing players to the outside areas of the attacking zone.
“That’s us forcing everybody to shoot out wide. That’s something we’ve been trying to work on is keep everybody wide and make them take the shot from a distance. The goaltenders can see it,” Pedersen explains. “It’s a big difference with our size on defence. Even our forwards are like that too: they’re a lot bigger and helping out.”
Despite the early success, there is always room for improvement, as Head Coach Gary Alexander says. The team has been focusing on puck control in practice in hopes of having even greater control in games.
“Well there’s always something to clean up. We’re just working on puck movement and basic positioning,” he states. “This time of year we’re trying to get our positioning in order so we can adapt to some of the techniques we want to follow. We’re trying to get that attack zone instead of being an inverted triangle to an ‘outverted’ triangle. It takes a lot of convincing because we’ve trained these kids to go to the net for 15 years and now we’re trying to get them to stall back up.”
The game in Sexsmith will be carried live on Friday evening on 100.1 Moose FM, with the pre-game show starting at 6:45 p.m., and the opening faceoff at 7. After Friday, the team will return home for another game Saturday night at the North Peace Arena against the currently undefeated Grande Prairie JDA Kings.