One down, three to go.
The Airdrie Xtreme capitalized on secondary scoring as the Bantam AAA team opened its longest road trip of the season with a 5-4 win over the White Rebels Selects in Red Deer on Oct. 30.
“We started off strong by scoring on the first shift, and got a shorthanded one 10 minutes in, then shifted back into our comfortable zone and allowed Red Deer to tie it up,” said Xtreme head coach Terry Keogh.
The Xtreme improved to 7W-3L on the season and currently sits second, with three games in hand, behind the Lethbridge Golden Hawks in the Alberta Major Bantam Hockey League’s Ram South Division.
Tyler Wong, Mackenzie Bauer, Connor Boyd, Colby Chartier and Troy Vantetering all scored for Airdrie. Wong sits fifth in league scoring with 25 points, while Kyle Pauls sits eighth with 19 points and Bauer 10th with 18 points.
But having the three top weapons on one line has started to draw extra attention from the Xtreme’s opponents.
“Red Deer was definitely trying to line match with us and, with last change at home, they did a pretty good job of that,” Keogh said. “We took the notion not to counteract that for now. A lot of the scoring comes from the one line, so it’s good to see we’re starting to get some secondary scoring, because that has been a concern of ours.”
Airdrie built an early first period lead against Red Deer, but had to battle to hold on to the win in the final 40 minutes.
“We didn’t play anywhere near a 60-minute hockey game,” Keogh said. “We only played as well as we had to when we had to. Some of it could do with our preparation for games and we need to change our focus on that in the next couple of weeks. We’re trying to get to where we play at our best regardless of the competition.”
Airdrie will continue its month-long road trip with a contest against the Calgary Northstars on Nov. 7.