The Bonnyville Sr Pontiacs will be hosting the 2018 Senior AA Men’s Hockey Provincial in 2018. The event will coincide with the 65th anniversary of the Pontiacs and help celebrate decades of great hockey in Bonnyville.
“We put in our bid and we’ll be hosting!” President of the Sr Pontiacs, Dennis German says the tournament will be held in late March of 2018, “probably a six team tournament. The winner of their respective leagues in the AA category from throughout Alberta.” AA is the second highest level of senior hockey in Alberta, AAA being the highest; and not to be confused with senior citizens. “That’s a common misconception,” laughs German, who notes that average players are between 20 and 35 years old. “At 20 they can no longer player junior hockey, like the Jr A Pontiacs, so they move on to senior hockey.” There are a few former Jr A Pontiacs on the line-up, including fan favourite Lucas Isley and one former NHL’er Jonathan Kalinski.
Along with exciting hockey action, hosting provincials will give the Pontiac organization a chance to celebrate 65 years of the Pontiacs in Bonnyville. When the club first started German notes that players were 15-30 years old. The one team grew into many and eventually the Jr A and Sr AA Pontiacs were formed. German anticipates there will be some sort of Alumni celebration and/or banquet and other community events throughout the year, leading into provincials.
The Sr Pontiacs didn’t make it provincials in 2016, after losing a heartbreaker of a game 6 league final to Daysland. The club embarks on the 2017 league play downs this Saturday in Mayerthrope versus Whitecourt. (Although taking the higher position, 3rd to Whitecourt’s 6th, in the regular, the Sr Pontiacs travel first because ice wasn’t available in Bonnyville for Saturday.
The Bonnyville Pontiacs Sr. ‘AA’ Hockey Club has wrapped up another successful season in the North Central Hockey League with a third place finish in the 10 team league.
- Daysland Northstars captured first place with 31 points (14-1-0-3)
- Morinville Kings took second place with 30 points (15-3-0-0)
- Bonnyville Pontiacs were in third place with 29 points (14-3-0-1)
The first round of playoffs starts January 20. Top 7 teams participate All series are best of five.
Edson (8), Westlock (9), and Slave Lake (10) are eliminated.
- Daysland (1) has a bye in the first round.
- Morinville (2) vs. Rocky Mountain House (7)
- Bonnyville (3) vs. Whitecourt (6)
- Devon (4) vs. Eckville (5).
First Round Playoff dates for Bonnyville Pontiacs:
Game 1 in Whitecourt, Saturday, Jan. 21 at 7:30 p.m. (game played in Mayerthorpe)
Game 2 in Bonnyville, Sunday, Jan. 22 at 5:45 p.m.
Game 3 in Bonnyville, Friday, Jan. 27 at 8:30 p.m.
Game 4 in Whitecourt, Saturday, Jan. 28 at 8:30 p.m.
Game 5 in Bonnyville, Saturday, Feb. 4 at 7:30 p.m.
Bonnyville Pontiacs players were the top 2 scorers in the League, Dakota Mason took top spot with 27 goals, and 20 assists for 47 points. Michael Desjarlais was in second spot overall with 17 goals and 18 assists for 35 points.