Bobcats beat the Crusaders 4-2 at home on Tuesday Night!
Winning 3 games in a row is no small feat, it’s also not terribly uncommon. The Bobcats did it 5 times last season. Now, starting a season 3-0 has been a far greater struggle for the traditionally slow starting team – having not done it since 2015. This years squad however is focussed on looking forward and not concerning themselves with a difficult statistical past. Regardless of where the focus lies, the Bobcats have opened the 2022/23 campaign 3-0 with a victory over the Sherwood Park Crusaders.
It was a strong start for the home side. Ending the first period up 1-0 on a goal from Nik Hoogendoorn, who pounced on his own rebound and slid the puck to an open net with his backhand.
After the Crusaders evened the score early in the second the Bobcats responded regaining the lead. Behind the net Jayven Leslie dished to rookie Rylan Ringor who quickly moved the puck back above the goal line to Borysiuk, who made no mistake for his second on the season. Ringor would grace the scoresheet again 7:45 into the third when he received the puck off the end wall, banked it off the back of the vulnerable Cru net minder to gain a two goal lead for the first time on the night, it wouldn’t be the last.
With their goalie on the bench late in the third Sherwood Park clawed back within one. Connor Burke answered back 23 seconds later firing his first goal of the season into an empty net from centre ice to solidify the victory.
You can attribute Tuesdays victory to a number of factors. Their 21/22 campaign was cursed with inopportune penalties and power play goals against. Through three games this season the Cats have only 10 minutes in penalties and only one goal against while down a man. Big key with this is that they’ve maintained an aggressive style of play without crossing the line. The Bobcats forecheck was tenacious in the victory creating turnovers in all three zones.
Coach Dube was very pleased with his teams effort, “We built off the weekend and as we move forward and guys continue to understand the growing continues, more and more guys knowing what is expected and are executing.”
Regarding the discipled play through 3 games, “We need to play tough during the play and keep moving our feet, when we do both of those we give ourselves a better chance. Tonight’s game overall was a real clean, good, hockey game.”
One real concern prior to the season was offence. The Bobcats top 4 scorers from last season have all moved on to post secondary through scholarships based on their success with the Cats. That’s a lot for any team to try and replace. The team is off to a good start with rookies contributing. Maybe most notable is Rylan Ringor who Dube commented on post game, “Ringor demands a lot from himself in games and in practices, he’s a player who the young players look up to in his daily habits. He works.”
Bobcats young and old will continue their season with their first road trip this coming weekend in Drayton Valley. Next action at the Civic Centre comes October 4th when the Cats host the Spruce Grove Saints.