The Navs faced off in back to back games at home this past weekend September 30 and October 1 at the Baytex Energy Centre.
Friday’s game against the Fort St. John Huskies saw the Navs give the opponents the chance to score their first goal at 7:54 into the first. The early blood threw the Navs into a frenzy, who regrouped their efforts to come back up two and finish 2-1 at the end of the period.
Lindan Calliou’s fast goal at 48 seconds into the second set up a streak for the Navs, who went on to capture two more before the end of the game. With 34-32 shots on goal for the Navs, the work of goalie Ryan Noble cannot be understated, as he kept the puck out of the net time after time Friday.
The 5-1 victory over the Huskies gave the team something to celebrate as it saved up some of its energy for the Saturday game against rival team Grande Prairie County JDA Kings.
And rivalry was the key term in Saturday’s game as the Navs and Kings both worked their way through what appeared to be non-stop stints in the penalty box.
The Nav’s speed and power did not seem to put a damper on Kings goalie Dalyn Haire, who although outshot by nearly 2-1, managed to deflect almost every single attempt thrown at him.
The Kings established a first period lead of 2-0 over the Navs, widening the gap to 4-0 into the second period. Finally, an early third period goal by Cort Bellerose broke the streak. But it was not enough, with the Kings rushing through the defense to bring the score up to 5-1, where it would stand until the final buzzer.
The Navigators have much to learn from their game against the Kings. Even though they outshot their opponents 39-22, they weren’t able to make those shots count and also failed to regroup defensively, giving their opponents the openings needed to maximize their scoring opportunities.
Navs currently sit in third place in the NWJHL, with 3-2-1. Kings take first with 3-3-0, followed by the Jr. Canucks who are at 4-3-1.
The Navs will hit the ice for their fourth game this coming Friday October 7 at the Baytex Energy Centre. The game will start at 8 p.m.
Tickets for general admission are $10, $8 for seniors, $5 for students grades 1-12. Admission for children five-years-old and under is free.