SHERWOOD PARK, AB (November 14, 2014) – Six nights after losing on Casman Centre ice, the Sherwood Park Crusaders dished out some revenge, beating the Fort McMurray Oil Barons 3-0 (11-11-3) at home.
The Crusaders’ line of Luke Kempf, Brett Van Os, and Daniel Wray ended up being a big part of the team’s success.
At 16:35 of the first period, Kempf deflected a puck past Zach Fortin (St. Jerome, PQ) to give the Crusaders the 1-0 lead.
Almost exactly a period later, with 3:32 to play in the second, Van Os found the back of the net, extending the lead to 2-0.
Kempf and Van Os both ended the game with a goal and an assist, while Wray grabbed two assists of his own.
The Crusaders helped ice the game just under three minutes into the third, when Chris McKay scored to put them up 3-0, the score that would eventually stand as the final.
Tommy Nixon made 31 saves to pick up the shutout, while Zach Fortin had 35 stops in a valiant losing effort.
After the game, Barons head coach Curtis Hunt broke down how his team can’t afford to take nights off in the effort department.
“You have to have a willingness to compete and go to tough areas, and we just didn’t have that tonight. We played a very perimeter-style game. We had some flashes, but for the most part we wanted a light game, and we told them in the morning meeting it wasn’t going to be one,” he said.
“It’s times like this you challenge your leadership, you challenge your compete level, and whether you’re prepared to play the right way. It was real apparent that we weren’t.”
“In the end, you’ve got to play a team game. You have to play five up, five back. You have to pay the price, block shots, and execute under pressure. The gameplan doesn’t change regardless of tonight’s outcome. We’ve got to get away from that mentality that it’s easy. It’s not easy; you’ve got to work.”
With the loss, the Barons remain in sole possession of fourth place in the North Division, while the Crusaders pull six points ahead of the MOB in third place.
Up next the Barons battle the team at the top of the division, the Spruce Grove Saints, on a Saturday night (November 15).
Puck drop is at 7:00, with the pre-game show live on KAOS 91.1 at 6:45.
KAOS 91.1 3 Stars:
3. Tommy Nixon (31sv SO)
2. Brett Van Os (1G/1A)
1. Luke Kempf (1G/1A)