Local Content -
Written by Greg Price
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 15:25
Taber midget “AA” Golden Suns pushed Lethbridge Hockey Hounds to the limit in its first round of South Central Alberta Hockey League playoffs, but eventually succumbed in the best-of-three series.
Despite the Hockey Hounds winning twice as many games as the Golden Suns did during the regular season, Taber was able to push the series to its full three games before falling 8-3 in the deciding game on Sunday.
Logan Kerner had two goals and an assist in the game with Tyler VanVaerenbergh getting a goal and an assist. Tyler Tessemaker also drew an assist. Matt Perin faced 37 shots on net for the Suns.
Outmanned already with a short bench due to injury, the Suns were not helped by the referee’s whistle either with twice as many penalties as the Hockey Hounds.
“The ref kind of took the game away from us. I mentioned that to them to let the players decide the outcome and he almost tossed me out,” said Virgil Olson, head coach of the Taber midget “AA” Golden Suns. “We pushed them hard, but we should have beaten them our first game and we could have taken them out in the second.”
The first game Olson spoke of was a 6-4 loss on the road last Wednesday in which the Suns had their opportunities with the game tied 4-4 going into the final period.
Kerner tallied twice with VanVaerenbergh and Calvin Swanson each scoring once. Wyatt Macleod assisted twice and Swanson and VanVaerenbergh had single assists. Perin faced 49 shots on net.
“That’s the game we needed to win. It’s hard to play a game in overtime (Saturday) and then coming back on Sunday with such a short bench. Our chances of beating that team were in the first games, not taking it to the third because we just ran out of energy,” said Olson. “We only had two-and-a-half lines with three guys sitting out with injury. At that level of hockey, it’s tough. We had that overtime game and then with the lopsided penalties we are tiring guys out playing shorthanded all the time. We needed to steal that first game, it’s tough going into someone’s barn to steal a game that’s a do-or-die game, Lethbridge is tough in their own barn.”
Taber midget “AA” Golden Suns were able to push the series to three games with a thrilling 3-2 double-overtime victory at the Taber arena on Saturday.
Kerner scored the overtime winner at the 17:06 mark with an assist from Macleod who also scored twice. Paul Shimbashi, Matt Kaga, Cole Nakamura and Turner Cody all drew assists. Perin faced a whopping 68 shot son net to preserve the TO win.
Despite the first-round exit form SCAHL playoffs, Olson was pleased to see the fight his Suns team had to the very end, even though the writing was on the wall in the deciding game with the lopsided score.
“The kids never quit all the way through. Even when we were down by five they were still trying to score goals, working hard,” said Olson.
Taber midget “AA” Golden Suns will be staying together for one more tournament in March in Banff.