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Tough weekend for the Pontiacs

BONNYVILLE - The Bonnyville Jr. A Pontiacs had a tough weekend with back-to-back losses.

The Pontiacs fell to the Sherwood Park Crusaders when they came to town and didn’t bounce back when they faced off against the Spruce Grove Saints in enemy territory.

Tough loss for the Pontiacs

Although the Pontiacs put up a fight against the Crusaders, they fell 4-2 on home ice on Friday, Jan. 10.

Head coach Rick Swan believes the Pontiacs had a strong showing against one of the top teams in the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL).

“I think that this game overall was a good test, because if we want to be able to compete with these guys when it matters in the end everyone’s got to understand this is a 60-minute game and everyone’s going to share the burden of being the best they can be,” he explained.

Pontiac Reilly Connors came off the bench hot, scoring the first point of the game less than two minutes into the first frame.

“I think we came out flying and showed what our team can bring to the table,” expressed Bonnyville centreman Chayce Schmidt. “We were getting a few disciplinary penalties, a couple of bounces didn’t go our way, and you’ve got to play a full 60-minutes against a team like that.”

Before the period was through, the Crusaders capitalized on a power play to tie it up 1-1.

“I thought we had a good first 10-minutes, until we gave them that power play,” noted Pontiac Daine Dubois. “That’s something that we know we can’t be giving them any opportunities for special teams, because they have a deadly power play.”

During the second frame, the Crusaders added three goals to take a 4-1 lead.

The Pontiacs closed the gap when Thomas Kramer found the back of Sherwood Park’s net, but couldn’t keep up the momentum. 

In the end, Sherwood Park walked away with the 4-2 victory.

Pontiacs fall to the Saints

The weekend didn’t end on the high note the Pontiacs were hoping for when they went up against the Spruce Grove Saints on Sunday,      Jan. 12.

Bonnyville couldn’t regroup after their loss to the Crusaders two nights before, and fell to the Saints 6-5. 

The Pontiacs started the game off strong with Joshua Kroon scoring at the 10-minute mark in the first period.

The Saints were quick to take charge of the game, netting four goals  in the second.

Kramer broke through Spruce Grove defence on a power play, getting the puck past their goaltender. The Saints answered with a goal of their own to finish the period 5-2.

Despite Spruce Grove adding another point to start the final frame,  Bonnyville refused to go down without a fight.

Dubois added his name to the scoresheet, followed by Matthew McKim and Connors.

Bonnyville couldn’t tie the game before the buzzer, and Spruce Grove ended the matchup with a 6-5 victory.

The teams will meet for a rematch at the R.J. Lalonde Arena on Jan. 15. Puck drop is 7 p.m.

Robynne Henry, Bonnyville Nouvelle

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