Drumheller Dragons | DrumhellerMail - Page #56
Last updateWed, 17 Jul 2024 3pm

Dragons secure college spots

    The Drumheller Dragons would like to congratulate Breyden DeCock, Cass Mappin and Jason Kenney on their commitments to the University of Calgary Dinos (CIS), the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns (CIS) and the Elmira College Soaring Eagles (NCAA), respectively.
    DeCock, from Calgary, played 7 games for the Dinos in 2010-11, and is returning to the U of C for his sophomore season.
    He had 6 goals and 10 assists for 16 points in only 24 games for the Dragons in 2009-10, and was also a recipient of the RBC Scholarship awarded by the AJHL that year.
    He is enrolled in the U of C’s Kinesiology Program.
    Mappin, from Big Valley, contributed 13 goals and 14 assists for 27 points in 28 games in Drumheller, and has already made an impact in the CIS, recording a goal and an assist in his first game this year.
    Kenney, from Somerville, MA, spent two seasons with the Dragons, compiling 3 goals and 7 assists to go with 110 PIMs in 51 games played. He joins former Drumheller Teammate Casey Fratkin (2009-10), who is entering his second season with the Soaring Eagles.

Dragons head north for weekend

    While the Dragons have fallen three in a row, coach Dan Price says they are playing strong hockey and are looking to improve on their next road trip.
    The Dragons are on their way north this weekend to play the Bonnyville Pontiacs and the Fort McMurray Oil Barons. This follows on a week where they bowed to the Sherwood Park Crusaders and twice to the Camrose Kodiaks.
    Last Thursday, in Camrose, Price says the team started slow and did not manage the puck well in the neutral zone. They improved through the second half of the game, and goals by Keith Csizmadia in the second period and Sam Lawson in the third, had the teams tied at two with seven minutes to go. Camrose exploited a Dragons error, which lead to a two-on-one for the game winner.
    “It was really a good finish for us,” said Price.
    He said the team continued to play strong heading home last Saturday. Mitch Owsley and Trevor Tracy kept the game tied at two after one period. Brody Robinson scored in the third keeping the game tied after two. The Crusaders went up 5-3 in the third, but in the dying seconds, Ryan Bloom scored on the powerplay, ending the gamed 5-4 for the Crusaders.
    “I thought we had the majority of the scoring chances by far, and we deserved to win that game," said Price.
    “It could have been our best game of the year.”
    The follow up on Sunday night was lack lustre. Camrose dominated from start to finish, winning 4-0.
    “We were flat, I didn’t feel like we were the better team in that particular game,” said Price. “We were a bit of a road weary team and a bit beat up. To be where we want to be this year we need to push through and get those points and win those games on the road. There were some highs and lows, but hopefully some good lessons learned by the guys.”
    The Dragons are in Bonnyville this Friday and then in Fort McMurray on Saturday.
    “It is exciting, we get to go right back on the road… it is a great challenge and test for us Friday and Saturday,” said Price.
    The Dragons are back home on Tuesday, October 18 to play the Brooks Bandits.

Dragons strong at Showcase Weekend

    The mantra for the Dragons has been to commit to winning habits, and it seems to be making a difference as they ended the week 2-1.
    The Dragons were able to down the Sherwood Park Crusaders in their own arena 3-1, handing them their first loss. On Friday, they were trounced 6-3 by the Fort McMurray Oil Barons, but on Saturday, pulled it together for a 4-1 victory over the Grande Prairie Storm.
    “Hockey is both a possession and a transition game, and we have to build habits on both sides of it, and I think we are doing that more and more and we are getting better in doing it more consistently,” said coach Dan Price.
    Puck control was key in last Wednesday’s game versus the Crusaders. Mitch Owsley scored the first two goals for the Dragons putting them up 2-0 after two periods. Sherwood Park poured it on at the end and scored with less than three minutes left. Keenan Martens scored on the empty net to seal the game with eight seconds. Keith Csizmadia had two assists.
    “I think there were two deciding factors. One was that we controlled the puck really well… we protected it, passed it and moved it well, and had support from our forwards and defence,” said Price.
    Another key was the performance of rookie goalie Christopher Wray in his first start in Junior A hockey.
    “Sherwood Park came hard early, and they had a couple chances right off the bat before we had our chances. Chris made some great saves to keep us alive and we scored and got our lead,” said Price, adding, “Wray also stood strong at the end making key saves.”
    Friday’s game against Fort McMurray showed the Dragons’ struggle with injuries. Owsley scored in the first period to tie the game, but that was as close as the Dragons could get. Sam Lawson and Kenton Levesque also scored in the third period, but the Oil Barons outshot the Dragons 50-21 as they cruised to victory.
    “Our defence core was extremely depleted during all the showcase games,” said Price. “We only had five defenseman, and four were either not defensemen or first year players,” said Price.
    While the Oil Barons continued its barrage on the Dragons, the defence kept the shots to the outside, limiting scoring chances.
    “I am pretty happy with the way they competed against Fort McMurray and then Grande Prairie,” said Price.
    The Dragons flexed their offensive muscles against the Storm on Saturday. Giovanni Bombini scored five minutes in, and three minutes later Doug Jones put the Dragons up 2-0 on the powerplay. The Storm scored midway through the second period but Csizmadia and Lawson scored in the third to end the game 4-1.
     Ryan Bloom and Levesque each had two assists. The Dragons were 40 per cent on the powerplay.
    The Dragons are hoping to get healthy, and their October schedule, which has five games at home, may help.
    “If we can rest and get healthy and sort of get in a bit of a rhythm like we had on the road, it sets us up well for October,” said Price.
    The Dragons are in Camrose this Thursday, but home Saturday to play Sherwood Park.

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