Story Coming In:
On paper, the road gets a little easier for the Oil Barons. No longer on a stretch of games against top three opponents in the league, Fort McMurray looks for their first win since December 29th. One key for success this weekend will be limiting the shots against. During their seven game losing skid, the Oil Barons have given up an average of 42 shots against, while mustering an average of 23 shots on goal per game. Fort McMurray will continue to lean on their power-play, which ranks 10th in the AJHL and has converted on 20.8% for its chances since the Christmas break. The MOB are also seeing a handful of young players taking big steps forward with their opportunities, like the emergence of Spencer Kunz and Demitri DiFlorio on defense, while rookie Anthony Campbell has three points over his last two games. The Oil Barons are also hoping to see the additions from the trade deadline acclimatize with their new team, as Fort McMurray waits for the first points from Keenan Ingram, Liam Cox-Smith and Jaxon Priddle.
View From Lloydminster:
Despite the Bobcats not playing Fort McMurray since September 23rd, not a lot has changed with Lloydminster’s roster. The biggest difference is the departure of forward Dalton MacGillivray, who was in the top five in AJHL scoring. The Bobcats are on track to finishing above .500 for only the second time since 2016. With a sixth ranked offense, Lloydminster has shown they can score with any team in the league. Leading the charge is captain Caden Cabana, Blake Setter and Ben Aucoin, who each have over 40 points. Brody Juck has been dangerous from the defense with his 31 points, including 23 on the power-play, while Ishan Mittoo, Caden Steinke and Kade Fendelet all provide excellent secondary scoring. The biggest question mark for Lloydminster is keeping the puck out of their net. The Bobcats are ranked 12th in goals against and are averaging 35 shots against per game this season.
Stats Leaders For Fort McMurray:
Goals: Gaul (18)
Assists: Lamanna (17)
Points: Gaul (26)
PIM: Schmidt (74)
Goalies: Nelson: 6-8-0-2, 3.68 GAA, 0.911%, 1 SO