Admirals’ pursuit of success continues

After a long wait, the Sylvan Lake Admirals were anxious to get back in action and were visiting the Bentley Generals

  • Feb. 21, 2013 11:00 a.m.

After a long wait, the Sylvan Lake Admirals were anxious to get back in action and were visiting the Bentley Generals, in Red Deer on this past Family Day Monday for Game 1 of the AAA Senior Mens Alberta Provincial Semi Finals.

The Admiral staff have been working hard in the background, doing last minute recruiting and trying to get the team prepared for a hard series.

The first period was hard fought and the Admirals were battling hard and keeping in the game.

Bentley had 3 power play opportunities totaling 5 minutes in the first period and 2 late penalties at the end of the first gave the Generals 1 minute of 5 on 3 to start the second and another minute of 5 on 4.

Having battled the Generals to a 0-0 draw in the first the Admirals crew had dug a hole for themselves, with a little help from some one-sided refereeing.

The Bentley crew took little time in the second period to build a 2-0 lead, scoring on the 5 on 3 then converting the 5 on 4.

Barely a minute and a half later the referee made a weak call on another Admiral and the Generals made it 3-0.

The wind was noticeably taken from the sails of the Admirals crew and the intensity was gone from the game allowing Bentley to take control and score twice more before the period ended.

With one minute left in the second period another call on an Admirals defensemen was compounded by the chatter from an obviously frustrated player and a second minor was assessed, for a 4 minute total on the play.

Not even the Bentley faithful could believe that the Admirals could be assessed 8 straight penalties over 2 periods without a single call against the Generals. At the end of the second it was 5-0 Bentley.

The third period saw the Admirals take a step forward and play like they are capable of and action was end to end.

At 12:07 the generals got their first penalty called but an Admiral went at the same time.

At 10:00 even the Generals took another penalty but 26 seconds later the Admirals were given a minor for roughing, so goodbye power play.

The Generals were again called for a minor at 8:12 which gave the Admirals just over a minute in power play time but they weren’t able to muster a goal.

At 4:09 the Generals were called for roughing but the resulting scrum had coincidental minors assessed and again with 6 seconds to go coincidental minors were given.

The Generals rounded out their scoring with 1:36 to go when a shot from behind the net banked off the Admirals goaltender and found its way into the net. Final score 6-0 Bentley.

It’s always easy to blame a referee for the loss but Bentley was full marks for the win but a far better and more entertaining game was missed because of the volume of penalties assessed that interfered with two teams who just wanted to play hockey.

The game was not out of hand or getting out of hand so it was perplexing to many in attendance, to understand the rationale behind the calls.

For a full 48 minutes, only one team was penalized, without a single incident having been called against the opponent.

Over all Bentley enjoyed 16 minutes of 5 on 4 and 1 minute of 5 on 3 power play time spread over 9 actual man advantages and the Admirals had one minute and 48 seconds of 5 on 4 power play time over 2 actual man advantages.

“It was frustrating” commented Coach / GM Jason Stephens, after the game. “We wanted to make a game of it and set a tone to the play but you can’t do that sitting in the penalty box and playing shorthanded. The Generals are a solid team capable of putting the puck in the net without the power play advantage and twice as dangerous with the man advantage.

They proved that again today and we need to play smarter and use our speed if we want to even the series Friday at home.

I thought our guys played well in the first and third periods but all the penalties leading up to and in the second, shifted the momentum to Bentley and they took full advantage.”

Game 2 of the best of 7 series goes Friday Feb 22nd in Sylvan Lake at the Multiplex.

Puck drops 8:30 PM. Game 3 is Saturday Feb. 23rd in Bentley 7 PM start, game 4 is Friday March 1st in Sylvan Lake 8:30 PM start.

If necessary game 5 is March 2nd in Bentley 7 PM, game 6 March 8th in Sylvan Lake 8:30 PM start and game 7 is March 9th in Bentley 7 PM.