Granted one more crack at playoff glory, the Slave Lake U13 #1 Thunder grabbed it with both hands. They won both games against Fort McMurray on the weekend, securing third place in the league.
This came a week after a tough loss to Drayton Valley that put the Thunder out of the running for top spot. Fort McMurray had likewise lost to Hinton, so Hinton and Drayton squared off for the top prize.
Both of the games between Slave Lake and Fort McMurray were played in Slave Lake. On Saturday, the Thunder eked out a 5 – 4 win. On Sunday, they finished it off with a more emphatic 7 – 2 victory.
Connor Beauchamp scored Slave Lake’s first two goals on Saturday, and Colby Churchill scored the next three, including the winner in the third period. Isaiah Brown withstood 37 shots in the Slave Lake net for the win.
On Sunday, the visitors jumped out to a two-goal lead, but goals by Beauchamp and Carter Donaldson got things back on level terms before the first period ended.
After a goalless second, the Thunder got down to business, scoring five unanswered to run away with it. Beauchamp got his second and third of the game; Churchill, Brody Whitney and Nolan Beaupre also scored. Brown was again the Slave Lake netminder, facing 36 shots.
The Thunder played a home-and-home playoff series against New Sarepta on the weekend, for league bronze.
New Sarepta was the better of the two teams. They won 10 – 3 on Saturday in New Sarepta, and in Slave Lake on Sunday, took the game 7 – 2.
The play was less uneven than the score suggests. The Thunder had their chances, but the New Sarepta goalie was red hot, in both games.
On Saturday, the Slave Lake goal-scorers were Kade Morrison-Cardinal, with two, and Chase Ching. Noah Eben faced 40 shots in the Slave Lake goal. Scoring for the Thunder in Sunday’s game were Morrison-Cardinal and Jacob Pelley.
U11 #2 win bronze
This team battled Athabasca in a two-game, total-goal series to end the playoff season, winning league bronze. On Saturday, the Thunder tied Athabasca 4 – 4. Sunday’s game in Athabasca, the Thunder prevailed, 5 – 4 in a game that had to be decided by a shoot-out!
Jack Oostvogels scored twice for the Thunder in Saturday’s game. Cohen Dahlgren and Torrin Sinclair also scored. In net, Jayden Dick made 15 saves for the Thunder.
On Sunday, Oostvogels started up right where he left off, only this time he got four goals. Dick made 23 saves for Slave Lake, including all three Athabasca attempts in the shoot-out. Bowen Baird-Blachford scored on Slave Lake’s third shoot-out attempt to secure victory for the Thunder.
“It was awesome!” says head coach Ryan Sinclair. “Very exciting!”