Okotoks Bisons
Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 15-16, 2018
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The Okotoks Bisons looked very dominant in their two wins over the weekend to open up the 2018/19 HJHL regular season.

Okotoks started off the weekend in Didsbury with a 5-2 win over the Mountainview Colts on Saturday night.

Like last year the Bisons and Colts played a scoreless first period with both teams getting a couple of chances, but goaltenders Ethan Woodward (Mountainview) and Devin Reagan (Okotoks) stood tall and made some big stops. Regan would turn away all 11 shots he faced while Woodward was slightly busier but still made 13 stops.

The first goal of the game would come midway through the second period as Jason Horn would read the Colts breakout perfectly and intercept the breakout pass, leading to a breakaway goal for the second year Bison. That would turn out to be the lone goal in the second period, and it had the boys in blue up 1-0 on Mountainview. Shots on goal favored the Bisons 16-10 in the middle period and 29-21 in the hockey game.

In the third things would get a little wild. First Devyn Stewart snapped a point shot on the power play that would squeeze between the pads of Woodward to give the Bisons a 2-0 lead, Bryan Weber and Jagger Thiessen would assist on the goal 2:23 into the third period. Mountainview would strike back with back to back power play goals, first Matthew Myatt would put a shot on goal that Regan was able to turn away but Caden Switzer held the puck and was able to sneak a shot under the arm of Bison goaltender to get the Colts on the board 5:09 into the third period. Just 1:48 after that Quintin Thorburn would deflect a shot from Trey Wallace under the blocker of Reagan to even the game at two. Okotoks would show some resiliency and get the lead back 1:05 after that as Jason Horn and Bradt Black helped set up a wide open Austin O’Bray and the forward would backhand a shot top shelf to make it 3-2. Late in the third (16:45) Bryan Weber would spot a wide open Tyler Bordt and send him into the Colts end on a breakaway where the fourth year Bisons would slap the puck over the shoulder of Woodward to give Okotoks a 4-2 lead. Mountainview would pull their goaltender with less than two minutes left, but the smothering Bisons defense would create a turnover, and Jager Thiessen would get his first career HJHL goal into an empty net. Shots in the third period favored the Bisons 11-10 as they would outshoot the Colts 42-30 in the hockey game.

Sunday’s game came with relative ease for the Okotoks Bisons as they crushed the Ponoka Stampeders by a 10-0 score.

The boys in blue wasted little time to open up the scoring after Nicholas Murell was stopped just outside the crease, Tyler Bordt would grab the loose puck in the slot and snap a shot under the bar only 50 seconds into the game to make it 1-0. It would stay that way until the 15:09 mark of the opening period when Tyler Bordt (assists to Luc Thorimbert & Dallas Otto) would get his second of the game, this time on the power play with a wrist shot from the faceoff circle. That seemed to open the floodgates as with just over a minute to go in the opening period Nicholas Murell would take a pass from Travis Scott and redirect the puck behind Stampeders starting goaltender Branden Clark. A mere 46 seconds after that Braden Germain (assists to Jagger Thiessen & Mitch Wolf) would snap a short shot side on Clark to make it 4-0 Bisons. It wasn’t all bad for Clark who was doing everything he could to keep his team in the game as 10 seconds after the Bisons went up 4-0 Germain had a chance to make it 5-0, but Clark robbed the Okotoks forward on the doorstep. Shots finished up 16-9 Bisons in the opening period.

The second period would start off exactly as the first did. Okotoks would win the opening faceoff go down the ice and this time Austin O’Bray (assists to Mitch Wolf & Jagger Thiessen) would outwait Clark and tuck the puck behind the Ponoka goaltender. That goal would be the end of the afternoon for Clark as he would give up five goals on 17 shots. In to replace him would be Derian Gaumond and he would make some big stops early in the second to keep the Bisons up 5-0, but eventually, Okotoks was able to crack the armor and add to their lead. Shorthanded, Jason Horn would get a breakaway pass from Bryan Weber and rip a shot blocker side on the Ponoka goaltender at 10:02. Just over five minutes later Austin O’Bray would get his second of the period when he redirected a point shot from Nicholas Jordan between the pads of Gaumond to make it 7-0. Kyle Harrison would then get the prettiest goal of the day as off the faceoff he would streak in on the left side and put a shot in the top right corner over the shoulder of Derian Gaumond to make it 8-0, Jagger Thiesse and Mitch Wolf drew helpers on the goal. Shots favored the Bisons in the middle period 16-8 and 32-17 in the game.

Late in the third period, Okotoks would add to their lead on the power play. After Tyler Bordt shot was stopped, Jagger Thiessen would scoop up the loose puck and on a wraparound would beat Gaumond and a Ponoka defenseman to the net to make it 9-0. Kody Briggs would finish off the scoring with 8 seconds to go in the game,  as Nicholas Murell would drop a perfect pass to the slot for the 21 year old forward and Briggs would wire the puck into the back of the net to make it 10-0. Okotoks would dominate possession in the third period and would outshoot Ponoka 17-5 in the period and 49-22 in the hockey game.

A side note to the game it was Devin Reagan's first shutout of the season and third as a Bisons. Reagan also moved into a tie for 7th on the goalie assists total with his third career assist. Nicholas Murell also had a massive game on Sunday as he collected career Bisons points 50, 51 and 52 to move him to 130th on the Bisons all-time point list.

Okotoks will be back in action on Friday night for their home opener against the Strathmore Wheatland Kings with puck drop at 8:00. The two teams will then clash in Strathmore the next night, and you can catch the game on Saturday on the Bisons Mixlr channel starting at 7:55 pm.

Story by Chris Colwell

@Cjcolwell

 

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HEADLINES
Bisons remain in first place after a weekend split
Bisons Winning Streak Snapped
Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 28-30, 2018
Bisons Sweep Strathmore to remain perfect
Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 15-16, 2018
Former Bisons Heading To NCAA