Tonight do-or-die for Dragons | DrumhellerMail
Last updateFri, 24 May 2024 12pm

Tonight do-or-die for Dragons

    The Drumheller Dragons were victims of a brutal mugging at the hands of the Brooks Bandits in the second round of the AJHL playoffs.
    In the first three games of the series, the Bandits skated away with commanding victories. The second round started On Friday, March 15, in Brooks, where the Bandits took a 5-1 win over the Dragons.
    The Bandits set the tone for the game early, scoring their first goal of the night 15 seconds into the game and followed up with three more goals throughout the remainder of the first period and the second.
    The Dragons fought hard and generated quite a few chances, but couldn’t penetrate the solid goal tending of Michael Frederick until Ryan Bloom found an open seam and scored the Dragons only goal of the night while shorthanded at 10:56 into the third.
    The Bandits capped the game with their fifth goal with three minutes left.
    The Dragons and Bandits remained in Brooks for game two the following night.
    The game started off fairly even between the two teams, but the Dragons ran into trouble 10 minutes in when RJ Reed opened the scoring for the Bandits. Within two minutes, the Bandits followed up with two more goals to make the game 3-0 heading into the first intermission.
    Things continued to spiral out of control for the Dragons and their stalwart goalie, Adam Beukeboom was pulled. Etienne Roy filled in, but couldn’t hold the Bandits back either, giving up three goals in the first five minutes of the second period. Beukeboom then returned to net after taking some time to regroup.
    Mitchell Gartner scored soon after while on the powerplay, signaling the Dragons were not done yet. The Dragons fought back and Mtichell Cook gave the Dragons their second of the night at 17:31 into the second.
    The Dragons were playing with new life and in the first three minutes of the third period, Colton Vannucci and Duncan Pernai racked up three more goals for the Dragons.
    The Bandits, reeling from the onslaught, pulled Frederick and were on their heels for the remainder of the period. The Dragons couldn’t get the sixth goal they needed to tie things up. In the final minute they pulled Beukeboom, but the Bandits managed to seal the win with an empty net goal to make it 7-5.
    Game three was brought to a packed Drumheller Memorial Arena on Monday, March 18.

Hunter Mills (right) sneaks the puck by Bandits goalie Michael Frederick during game three of the Dragons second round playoff series.

    The Dragons began the game all fired up and took it to the Bandits, outplaying and shooting them in the first. However, it was the Bandits who struck first on the scoreboard at 10:40 while on the powerplay. The two teams headed to the first intermission with the Bandits up 1-0.
    The game got away from the Dragons in the second. A string of penalties would see the Dragons short-handed for most of the period. The Bandits capitalized, scoring three more goals for a 4-0 game heading into the third.
    The Dragons, their frustration showing, took it to the Bandits hard in the third, getting a number of punishing hits.
    The Bandits kept up the pressure, and snuck the puck by Beukeboom eight minutes in for their fifth goal.
    The Dragons would score one for pride 11:21 into the third while on the powerplay. Hunter Mills, his first of the playoffs, found a loose puck in front of the Bandits net and sent it by an out of position Frederick.
    The Bandits would skate away with a 5-1 win and a 3-0 stranglehold on the series.
    The two teams met for game four tonight at the Drumheller Memorial Arena. The game starts at 7:30 p.m.

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