WESTLOCK - The Westlock Senior Warriors remain winless in the North Central Hockey League following an 8-2 Saturday-night spanking at the hands of the Bonnyville Pontiacs.
The Nov. 13 home loss, which saw the club surrender five-unanswered goals to the previously winless Pontiacs over the final 38 minutes, dropped them to 0-3 and into the cellar of the NCHL.
Although captain Mike Ivey said it’s been tough to get any rhythm going as their last game was played Oct. 23, that’s no excuse. After taking an early 1-0 advantage on a goal from Gerald Desjarlais, the Warriors looked primed to up their lead when they were handed a five-minute power play. But the man-advantage sputtered and the Pontiacs capitalized with a pair of PP goals later in the frame to take a 3-1 lead into the locker room.
In the second the Warriors came out firing with Ivey finding the back of the net only 10 seconds in to cut the deficit to 3-2. Any hopes of a comeback though were cut short when Bonnyville responded less than two minutes later to regain their two-goal lead — the first of five unanswered goals that led to starter Chad Langdale being pulled when the score hit 7-2.
“We haven’t played a game in three weeks and that showed as we made a lot of poor decisions. But as a whole it was a horrible hockey game for us, I really wasn’t happy with any of it to be honest. There are lots of reasons to say why things went wrong, but it just wasn’t a good enough performance,” said Ivey the day after the loss. “The game was right there for the taking a few times, but we had too many lost battles and some poor decisions.”
The Warriors will finish out the month on the road and will be in Devon to face the 1-4-0-1 Barons Nov. 20, before taking on the 3-3 Red Deer Rustlers Nov. 27. Ivey said they need to get into the win column soon if they want to have any shot at making the playoffs.
“We have to sharpen up here quickly and get out of this funk. We’ve got a few games coming up in a row which I think will be a lot better for us,” said Ivey. “If we bring our ‘A’ game I think we can beat anyone in this league. It’s such a short season and even shorter with Blackfalds out so the time to turn this around is now and the guys know that.”