The Lakeland Junior B Heat are North Champions. Their 14-9 victory over Sherwood Park sent a statement on the first night of the 2017 Provincials. This is your Cave Inspections Post-Game report.
Heat turns up early
Things started on a bad note for the Heat. The Sherwood Park Titans got a goal from Alex Colbert in the early going. The Junior B Heat responded in grand fashion, scoring five straight goals through the middle portion of the first. Justin Hodinsky scored twice, Tanner Barnes, Mitchell Bibeau, and Conner Born added goals in the first. The Heat got in some penalty in the late going of the first frame, and surrendered two more goals before heading to the locker room. The score was 5-3 with 20 minutes in the books.
Keeping it coming
The second period was pretty much a repeat of the first. The Junior B Heat scored three times in the first half of the period. The goals came from Donovan Bibeau, Ethan Brown, and Jaedyn Stratychuk. The Heat lead 8-3 at that point. Sherwood Park answered back, scoring at 9:27 to cut the lead in half. Donovan and Mitchell Bibeau would both add a goal each in the second half of the middle frame to push the Heat goal total to 10. Alex Colbert netted his second of the game, and the Junior B Heat lead was 10-5 going into the third period.
North Champs close it out
Going into the third, the Lakeland Heat were facing a 20 minute gap between them, and another North Championship. The captain, Jaedyn Stratychuk shoulder a big goal to open the third period. Sherwood Park managed to score three straight goals on Heat tender Mason Wild in the first half of the period. After the Titans goal at 11:13, the Junior B Heat lead was down to 11-8. The building was tense for a solid two minutes before Blake Smith put home a back door one timer to add another goal to the Heat lead. Donovan Bibeau scored a beautiful behind the back desperation goal on the powerplay less than two minutes later. The Titans put home their final goal of the game with 4:25 left in the game. Mitchell Bibeau scored his hat-trick goal with just under four minutes to play. That was the end of the scoring, and the start of a North Championship celebration for the Lakeland Heat.
“The guys were nice and relaxed. They were having some fun. They played hard, they played for their team. And it showed. They gave a couple opportunities, and we gave them a couple opportunities… It was a good game.” Lakeland Heat Coach Dennis Hodinsky said post-game. ” It’s one game at a time. The plan is to come out on top.”
3 games to go
The Lakeland Junior B Heat are back in action this morning, at 11 a.m. They will face the Lethbridge Barracudas in game two of the Provincial Tournament round robin.