Monday , 29 November 2021

Bonnyville Pontiacs riding 6 game win streak into home weekend set

Matteo Giampa scored a pair of goals and Charlie Russell added another as the Bonnyville Pontiacs hung on for a 3-2 win against the Grande Prairie Storm.

The Yaks are rolling on a six-game win streak about to play their next two games at home Friday and Saturday against the Calgary Canucks and Canmore Eagles.

Rookie Bodee Weiss made 28 saves for his fifth victory of the season, but the Storm netminder Aidan Feddema shut the door after the first period not allowing a goal and robbing the Pontiacs on several occasions. Otherwise, it could’ve been an early blow-out.

The Yaks outshot the Storm 11-8 in a scoreless third to secure the 11th win of the early season.

“The first period we came out flying and put a few pucks past him [Feddema]. I thought it was a great first period for us,” said assistant coach Neil Langridge.

“Into the second period, you could tell for us, we have such an offensive group that sometimes they chase the ‘pop and candy’ as we refer to it. And that’s the goals and assists. We started cheating a little bit here and there…and that’s what led to odd-man rushes the other way and them getting back into the hockey game with two quick goals. Then into the third, we shut everything down.”

Rookie Matteo Giampa has 5 goals in his last four contesting, riding a hot line with Austin Saint and Chayce Schmidt, who each contributed assists.

Schmidt said it’s a focus for the team throughout the early part of the season to play the right way.

“The message after the game was it was a good bounceback in the third. But every team is good in this league and we can’t be looking at the standings and be looking at rosters and stuff like that,” said Schmidt. “We have to treat every team like it’s the same game. And I think we did do that in the third and played a solid 15 minutes, we slowed down a little bit. But it was a great game.”

These wins are allowing the Pontiacs though to creep up the AJHL North standings. Entering Friday’s game, they will be three points back of first place and just one point behind Fort McMurray for second.

“We’re hot right now, so everybody come out. I’d like to see more fans in the stands definitely.”

Friday and Saturday’s games begin at 7pm. If you wear your Halloween costume to the game, you get in for free.

You can listen to the games live on lakelandconnect.net/pontiacs.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.