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Last updateFri, 17 Aug 2018 11am

Saturday victory could prove pivotal for Dragons

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    Coaches continue to see  the Dragons learning to breathe fire after a bounce back victory against the St. Albert Steel  on Saturday night at home.
    A crowd of 764 hockey fans were treated to an exciting night of hockey at Drumheller Memorial Arena as the Dragons posted what may have been their strongest win of the season.
    “It was a real pivotal moment for the team and I think as we go on to have success throughout the course of the year we will look back at this game and we’ll be able to attribute 50 per cent of our success to what happened here tonight,” said head coach Dan Price. ‘The reason is when St. Albert scored those three unanswered goals, we could feel our team sag, and that was a familiar feeling our team has had at the games we’ve lost this year. The team talked about it at the second intermission in the dressing room and decided if we play the game the right way we know we can win this game, we just have to commit to doing it the right way, we have to commit to our game plan.”
    The Dragons were strong from the get go, ending the first period up 2-1 with goals from Colin Bergman and  Mike Marianchuk. Just 10 seconds into the second period, Kyle Knelsen put the Dragons up 3-1. St. Albert didn’t lie down and in the space of three minutes were able to go up 4-3.
    A revived Dragons team came out iN the third and peppered the St.Albert net with 16 shots. Four of them went in, including one each from Justin Morello and Doug Jessey.  Robert Geddes scored his second and third of the season as the Dragons went on to a 7-4 win.
    “Now they have learned if they play the game the right way, they will have success,” said Price. “If they let themselves feel deflated or defeated, that is really the only time  we don’t have success in my opinion. It was a really pivotal moment mentally for our guys.”
    He says it was important to see Geddes start scoring for the Dragons.
    “He just had to trust himself to get to the net, have his stick on the ice and expect the puck to come to him, that was the only difference,” said Price. “I think in previous games  when the puck was hitting the post or the goalie was making the save, he wasn’t quite expecting the puck to come, now he is expecting the puck to come and he knows he can score.”
    While last Saturday can be characterized as a bit of a breakthrough, Price says it has been a process, and while  they were coming off a 5-3  loss the night before in Canmore, the same elements of trust and  sticking to the game plan were there.
    In Canmore on Friday, October 16 the Dragons were in the game, but a five minute penalty allowed Canmore to take control. Despite this, Price says the team showed resolve.
    “We had a five minute powerplay late in the game we had to kill, unfortunately Canmore scored two goals. But even after that powerplay ended we had a powerplay and scored and made it 5-3, and then we had a great look on a second powerplay that just about made it 5-4, and then we might have had a chance to tie it with our goalie out,’ said Price. “Our guys, although we did feel a bit of a sag, they didn’t quit by any means. We saw  signs of what happened Saturday in the third period of Friday night.”
    The Dragons are back at home this Friday and Saturday to take on the Camrose Kodiaks and the Calgary Royals respectively. Games start at 7:30 p.m.

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