The win tested the mettle of the Killbillies as the officials called a tight game which resulted in the ejection of three Fort St. John players. Despite being short handed team captain Amanda Rathburn says the remaining players adjusted to the way the game was being called and pulled out the win.
“It was a little tough of a start. The officiating was a lot different than we were use to. We got called on things that we’ve never been called on before so we had to adjust our game and the girls did which was wonderful to see,” she explains. “Three of our girls got kicked out of the game due to penalties. Ladies on our team that rarely get penalties were being asked to leave the game so adjustments had to be made. The coach made them, we followed them and were able to see it through till the end.”
The game marked the first time the Killbillies and Beelzebubs had squared off in a game before. Rathburn says when you’re playing a team you don’t know anything about it doesn’t change the team does as they focus on executing their game plan.
“We try not to worry about it. We try to go out and play the game that we know which is stick to our strategies, play on and play hard,” she explains. “We really had to adjust because of the reffing and it was a good learning curve for our team as we’ve seen the same reffing crew in northern B.C. so it was good to see something a little different in central Alberta and it opened our eyes to a few things.”
Going back to last season the team’s play has really taken off compared to two years ago when the Killbillies were unable to win any games. The squad has been able to add new pieces which have gelled nicely on the track with the remaining veterans.
“We’ve been extremely lucky with our new additions to the team and our old players,” Rathburn says. “We’re meshing very well and we’re able to take our game to a whole new level which has been wonderful to watch and to see happen. The friendships are the best part. Watching the friendships develop and get stronger is pretty wonderful and it shows on the track. When you know someone and you know what to expect you can anticipate and play right around them so that’s been wonderful.”
The Killbillies next game is a home date, their final home game of the season when they take on Oil City Dirty Harriets out of Edmonton on July 12. The game will be at the North Peace Arena with the action starting at 7 p.m.