Undefeated Wings clinch first

High Prairie Red Wing player Theo Cunningham, left, is checked by Slave Lake Icedog player Denver Olson in Greater Metro Junior A Hockey League action Feb. 13 in High Prairie. Cunningham scored two goals to lead the Red Wings to a 5-2 win.

Richard Froese
South Peace News

Undefeated in the regular season, the High Prairie Red Wings have clinched first place in the West Division in the Greater Metro Junior A Hockey League.
The red-hot Wings edged the hometown Edson Eagles 5-4 in a shootout Feb. 11 and defeated the Slave Lake Icedogs 5-2 at home Feb. 13.
With a season record of 35 wins and no losses, the Red Wings secure top spot in the West to earn a bye in the first round of the playoffs.
The victories also extended the Red Wings’ winning streak to 59 games over two seasons.
Kaden Desjarlais scored two goals in Edson including the game winner.
Dayton Shantz also popped a pair of goals while Mikal Chalifoux added one for the Red Wings who led 3-2 after the second period.
Brad Roncin was solid in net as the Eagles outshot the Red Wings 44-43.
Head coach Trent Meyaard says the Eagles gave the Red Wings a good test to get the team ready for the playoffs.
“It was a lot of fun and we had some adversity that our team needs to face before playoffs,” Meyaard says.
“The boys were tested throughout the entire game.”
He says the team battled back after struggling in the late stages of the game.
“It goes to show that we still need to become more conditioned for a full hard 60 minutes,” Meyaard says.
“We lacked a lot of energy and we were running on fumes.”
Theo Cunningham netted a pair of goals against Slave Lake.
Bryson Dallaire, Avery McNabb and Shantz also scored for the Red Wings who led 4-1 after the second period and 5-2 after the second.
Keygon Okemow was solid in goal as the Red Wings outshot the Icedogs 56-52.
He was extra busy in the scoreless third period when the Icedogs outshot the High Prairie 24-10.
The Red Wings were not on top of their game in the afternoon matinee, the coach says.
“We lacked a lot of energy and we were very undisciplined going to the penalty box all afternoon,” Meyaard says.
“It was a bit frustrating, but like I’ve said before, if we want to become a playoff team, we have to battle through the adversity and emotions a team faces throughout the season.
“We cannot be complacent no matter who we play.”
With just four games to play in the regular season, High Prairie is on the road Feb. 25 in Slave Lake and Feb. 26 in Mackenzie.

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