FINAL SCORE: SHERWOOD PARK 1 Lloydminster 3
After a solid weekend for the Crusaders, they couldn’t continue their great form. The team couldn’t get anything going and it wasn’t because Lloydminster played a good game. They struggled to put passes together and made the Bobcats look like a good team, overall just very sloppy. If the Crusaders want to compete with the best this season they better start beating the lower teams. Dropping points against an opponent that only has four wins on the season cannot be happening and the Crusaders have to come out dominating for the start.
The best line tonight has to be the fourth line, they put everything on the line for their team tonight. Casualt and Rebelato came out banging and crashing trying to give a spark but unfortunately the team didn’t respond. The other forward on that line, Zaharichuk, showed great leadership, giving the hits when necessary and won important faceoffs. Showed off his experience.
Klassen also had a decent game in the net tonight allowing two goals on 39 shots.
- The fourth line was lively in the first, gave the team the energy it needed every time they were on the ice. It would’ve been nice if the rest of the team could’ve built from this but that didn’t happen. They continued this into second creating the best chance for the Cru before their goal late in the period.
- The first line came alive with five minutes left in the second. It seemed to put a jolt of energy through the whole team because once that happened they started to play much better.
- On the lone powerplay in the second, the Crusaders cycled the puck superbly but didn’t get the puck in the goal.
- The Cru scored shorthanded late in the second, Stafford gathered the puck in his own end then carried the puck down the right wing. Eventually passed the puck across to a wide open Dykstra.
- The whole team came out firing in the third, creating many scoring opportunities and getting bodies in front. All they needed was a bounce to go their way but that wasn’t to be. Late in the third, Rebelato had a great attempt to tie the game but was robbed by the Bobcats netminder.
- Ashton Casault put his body on the line for his teammates tonight. He ended up fighting one of the biggest players on the Bobcats roster and seemed to be outmatched but stuck in there for his teammates. One big punch at the end put the Bobcat to the ice, not much more Casault could’ve done for his team tonight.
- The discipline was much improved only giving up one penalty. Once again, the penalty kill stood tall and didn’t allow the Bobcats any solid chances. You can almost pencil in the penalty kill for a good night every game.
- The Crusaders were way too casual in their own zone, turning over the puck numerous times.
- Seemed as if the Cru didn’t even show up in the first, sloppy play which led to them not being able to create anything. They were fortunate to only be down by one after the first.
- Lloydminster scored 18 seconds into the second period after the Cru failed to clear the puck.
- Even with the opportunities the offense was given, they couldn’t set up to create chances. They did improve on this in the third, however.
- Torontow left Klassen to fix his mistake. He turned over the puck attempting to make the pass behind the net basically gifting the Bobcats a golden opportunity, Klassen made a good save.
- The Crusaders left it to late in the game to make a comeback
THE TURNING POINT
My turning point tonight came right off the bat. Once the puck was dropped you could see that the Crusaders weren’t going to show up tonight. Sloppy play in both zones until the third period but by that time it was too late. The goaltender for the Bobcats deserves a lot of credit tonight, he made numerous superb saves to keep the Cru at one goal.
The Crusaders take on the Fort McMurray Oil Barons this Friday, a much tougher opponent. The Cru are yet to beat the Barons this season and if they play like they did tonight that streak will continue. Puck drop off is at 7pm at the Sherwood Park Arena.