Icedogs lose big, win big in opening weekend

Joe McWilliams
Lakeside Leader

Fans of the Slave Lake Icedogs who may have been hoping to find league champ High Prairie in a rebuilding phase this season got their answer on Friday night. In town for the season-opener vs. the Icedogs, the Redwings looked a lot like the powerhouse that romped in the GMHL West last season, beating the ‘Dogs 14 – 4.

The Icedogs might have had their tails between their legs after that whupping, but not so much that they didn’t turn the tables completely on Saturday, versus the fledgling Gibbons Pioneers. Playing in Gibbons, Slave Lake won the game 13 – 3.

“Dickens,” says head coach Gregg Kennedy describing the wildly different results (I.e. ‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.’) “Crazy!”

Stand-out performances in Saturday’s game were by Austin Gaspar, who is credited with six goals (but actually only scored four, according to the coach). Belgian import Loïc Dury showed what he can do as well, scoring nine points on three goals and six assists.

Francis Iron Jr., of Canoe Lake SK, starting his first-ever game for the Icedogs, saw only 22 shots.

Friday’s game saw Slave Lake out-shooting the Redwings in the first period, but High Prairie doing all the scoring, hitting the back of the net on six of their dozen shots on goal in the opening frame. Connor Johnson was in net for the Icedogs; he faced 55 shots overall. Dury was in on all four Slave Lake goals.

This Friday, the Icedogs play in Fox Creek; Saturday they are in Edson against the Eagles. Their next home game is Oct. 15 against Northern Alberta.

Left to right: Wilfred Iron, Mikal Chalifoux and Loïc Dury in Friday night’s game between the Icedogs and Redwings.

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