St. Albert’s elite minor hockey program looks to build on autumn successes in the lead-up to 2023.
With a few months of play under their belts, the St. Albert Raiders high-performance hockey teams have a lot to show for their efforts — and a lot to look forward to in the new year. After the first few months of competition, all of St. Albert’s AAA teams boast records well above .500.
U18 AAA RAIDERS
The Nektar Raiders currently lead the Alberta Elite Hockey League’s North Division with a record of 16 wins, four losses, and a tie.
This past weekend, the Raiders won back-to-back games against the Red Deer Chiefs and the Edmonton Junior Oilers, shutting out their capital region rivals 3-0.
Last month, Raiders forward Bradley Gallo was named one of Source for Sports’ AEHL Players of the Month for a blazing offensive performance that included nine goals in eight games. Now at 14 on the season, Gallo is tied for second place in the league.
Heading into the holidays, the Raiders will lace up against the Leduc Oil Kings this Saturday.
U18 AAA SLASH
The St. Albert Bauer Slash have won 11 of their opening 16 games in the Alberta Female Hockey League, putting them solidly in second place amongst the province’s best.
Forward Rayna Franklin currently leads the team’s offensive production with six goals and five assists.
In net, goalies Olivia Davidson and Kate Holan are second and third in the league, with 1.29 and 1.45 goals against averages respectively.
U17 AAA Flyers
Having won 13 of their first 18 games, the Tetz Powell CPAs Flyers trail only Fort Saskatchewan in the AEHL U17 standings, soaring above nine other teams in the league’s North Division.
“We’ve been happy with our team’s play so far this season. We have a group that is very competitive and determined to improve,” said head coach Carson Fleming. “As a group, we have had some strong performances in very competitive games recently. It has been encouraging to see the level we can play at when we are at our best, and we look forward to more opportunities to do so.”
Coming off a decisive 8-1 win over the Leduc Oil Kings this Sunday, the Flyers will face off against Red Deer’s North Star Chiefs this Saturday and the Canadian Athletic Club this Sunday.
U15 AAA SABRES
The Gregg Distributors Sabres sit atop the AEHL with a 17-1 record, with their formidable defensive and offensive strength reflected by their 117 goals for and 33 goals against.
“Our group has steadily improved over the first three months of the season,” noted head coach Geoff Giacobbo, citing his group’s hard work throughout the fall. “We are looking forward to the John Reid tournament and the playoffs in the new year.”
The John Reid Memorial, an annual event that showcases some of the best teams in North America, will be held in St. Albert from January 19th to the 22nd.
“We have a large number of players that have performed exceptionally well,” added Giacobbo. “All of our returning guys as well as many newcomers to the team have been really strong.”
Two of those players are particular standouts so far. Forward Ty Meunier currently leads the league in scoring, and Finn Werner leads all goalies with 10 wins and a 1.63 goals against average.