Hockey Digest

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The St. Albert Merchants are winners of two in a row with three games remaining before the Capital Junior B Hockey League playoffs.

Tonight the Merchants (17-14-4) face-off against the Beverly Warriors (21-13-1) at 8 p.m. at Clareview Arena and Friday they visit the Beaumont Chiefs (28-7-1) at 8:30 p.m.

The last home game is 8 p.m. Sunday versus the Edmonton Royals (27-8) at Akinsdale Arena.

The Merchants are ranked fourth in the west division and in the best-of-three qualifying round will play the fifth-place Stony Plain Flyers (16-18-3) for the second consecutive year.

The fourth victory in six games for the Merchants was Sunday’s 7-4 decision against the Leduc Riggers (7-27-2).

Jake Mercier struck twice and Evan Haimila (power play), Liam Thomas, Cam Mazur, Andy Barr and Brenden Passek also scored as the Merchants improved to 8-9-1 on home ice.

Matt Havens chipped in with three assists and Mason Kenny had two helpers.

In league scoring, Havens is fifth in assists with 34 and sixth in points with 58 in 35 games.

The teams combined for 28 infractions and 104 penalty minutes.

Shots were 50-33 for the Merchants and Ryen Papirny (10-10, 4.55 GAA) was in net.

Jorden Rooke’s second goal of the game was Sunday’s overtime winner as the Morinville Jets knocked off the North Edmonton Red Wings for top spot in the west division standings.

The 2-1 result at Ray McDonald Sports Centre lifted the Jets two points ahead of the Founders Cup playoff champions the last two years with two games to go for both teams before the Capital Junior Hockey League playoffs.

The Jets (25-7-4) and Red Wings (24-8-4) have clinched byes into the best-of-five quarter-finals.

Rooke opened the scoring at 3:47 of the second period with a shorthanded marker, set-up by Brett Dubuc’s league-high 38 assist, and the Red Wings pulled even on the power play at 11:21.

Rooke’s winner with 3:16 left in the five-minute OT period was his 15th goal and 40th point of the season. Joshua Perrott assisted on the play.

The Jets outshot the Red Wings 6-0 in OT and 29-27 overall.

Colton Kucher (14-4, 3.00 GAA) backstopped the Jets to their third win in a row and eighth in 10 games.

The St. Albert Tire Warehouse Raiders maintained their second-place standing in the north division of the Alberta Midget AAA Hockey League after recording three out of four points last weekend.

The Raiders (15-13-2) skated to a 4-4 draw against the Leduc Oil Kings (10-13-5) at Akinsdale Arena and are 6-0-1 in their last seven games after defeating the Fort Saskatchewan Rangers (7-18-5) on the road 5-1.

The Raiders have four games to go before the playoffs and the top two teams in the north earn first-round byes.

Zane Avery’s two goals in the Fort included a shorthanded effort. Peter Michailides (power play), Garrett Clegg and Spencer Augot (power play) also scored and Jack Langenhahn added two assists.

Shots were 44-33 for the Raiders and Mitchell Reidy (5-5-1, 3.49 GAA) was between the pipes.

The day before, the Raiders rallied from a 4-2 deficit after two periods on goals by captain Sam Smith-Ackerl and Aidan Steinke against Leduc.

Maxwell Struss and Logan Hunter lit the lamp in the second and Pete Corrigan finished the game with two assists.

The Raiders were outshot 29-27 and in net was Chris Curr (10-8-1. 2.54 GAA).

Sunday the Raiders and Southside Athletic Club (14-15-1) hook up at 11:45 a.m. at Bill Hunter Arena.

The St. Albert Flyers rebounded with a bang from their first loss of the season in the Alberta Minor Midget AAA Hockey League.

The first-place Flyers (26-1-1) racked up 62 shots on goal in Sunday’s 10-0 blowout of the Grande Peace Storm (5-23-2) at Akinsdale Arena.

Dominik Cesarz and Tyler Petre tallied twice and Stuart Dovey, Logan McKinley, Erik Boers, Cam Aucoin, Kye Buchanan and Jaron Coles also scored.

Evan Fradette (13-0, .920 GAA) stopped 20 shots for his league-high sixth shutout of the season and the team’s ninth.

Last week the Flyers fell 3-2 to the SSAC Bulldogs (18-8-4) at Millwoods Arena despite dominating the shot count 44-27.

The Bulldogs knotted it at two in the second and deposited the winner with under nine minutes left in the third.

Carson Henry and captain Blake Sydlowski scored in the second as the Flyers outshot the Bulldogs 21-7 in the period.

In net for the Flyers was Ryley Osland (13-1-1, 1.60 GAA).

Tonight the Flyers host the Leduc Oil Kings (15-10-2) at 7:45 p.m.

The first-place St. Albert Gregg Distributors Sabres close out the regular season in the Alberta Major Bantam Hockey League with four games in six days, starting Saturday in Sherwood Park.

Faceoff is 1:15 p.m. between the Sabres (27-1-4, 195 GF/70 GA) and Flyers (11-17-5), a potential best-of-three first-round Nitro north division playoff opponent.

The Sabres are 1-0-2 after losing their last two games at the John Reid Memorial Tournament to finish 3-2 overall.

Last week’s 8-8 draw against the host Fort Saskatchewan Rangers (22-6-2), the top team in the Charger north division, was followed by an 8-2 win and 6-6 stalemate against the Grande Peace Storm (14-13-5) in Grande Prairie.

Ethan Leyer is the league leader in goals with 34 and Matt Savoie, a peewee-aged player, is tied for second with 32.

Carter Savoie is third in points with 63, Leyer is fourth with 62 and Matt and Ryley Morgan share eighth spot with 58 apiece.

Sunday’s 2-1 shootout loss to the Peace Country Storm ended the 15-game winning streak for the St. Albert Raiders in the Alberta Female Hockey League.

The bantam elite team is still No. 1 at 17-2-1 as the north division leaders.

Jessica Kormysh scored in regulation time against the Storm (2-16-2) at Go Auto Arena.

The day before in St. Albert, the Raiders beat the Storm 3-1 as Libby Langenhahn, Bronwyn Boucher and Natalie Kieser potted goals.

The next game is Feb. 9 against the host Sherwood Park Royals (13-5-2) at 7:15 p.m.

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St. Albert Gazette

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