Written by Coach Curran
On Wednesday the Drumheller Dragons hosted the Brooks Bandits, who were riding a 10-game winning streak and are the hottest team in the AJHL having scored 17 goals in their previous two games. The Dragons were coming off a loss to the Lloydminster Bobcats at home, and knew they had to bring their game to another level.
It was an exciting game and Brooks had lots of scoring opportunities, but goaltender Hunter Virostek played an outstanding game for us, keeping us alive. It was the Dragons who scored first on a goal by Markus Boguslavsky on the powerplay. The first period expired with the Dragons leading 1-0.
In the second period, Brooks answered back with three straight goals which could have taken the wind out of our sails. But we kep battling hard and before the period expired Brett Campbell scored to make it 3-2 for Brooks.
The third period was an all-out battle, but Joren Patenaude threw the puck towards the net on the powerplay which was mishandled by the Brooks goaltender to make it 3-3. The game remained tied for the rest of the period.
Only 49 seconds into the overtime frame, Jordan Taupert scored from the slot to give the Dragons a 4-3 overtime win over the Bandits.
There were a lot of things I liked in the first period, especially in our zone. I know the Bandits are going to get their chances but we had to try and eliminate them from the slot area. It worked in the first period, but in the second period and parts of the third we were caught puck-watching and we can't do that against a team like the Bandits. What I liked is the way we didn't give up and had great goaltending, especially in the last 4 minutes of the game as Brooks had several great chances to get the go-ahead goal. We know we have a lot of work to do and we are improving but on this night I was excited for the boys and my hope is our confidence will grow and we will build off this win.
Photo by Broken Curfew Photography