Photo credit: Xander Holcomb, Blackfalds Bulldogs
Article: Aidan Serra
The Blackfalds Bulldogs and Olds Grizzlys played their first game of a back-to-back Friday night, marking their fifth of six meetings on the season. The two teams had split the first four games they’d played, with Olds most recently winning 6-5 in Blackfalds on November 12. Three of the team’s four games had been tightly contested, save for Blackfalds’ 9-2 win on October 25. Olds were coming in hot, winning two straight and three of five, while Blackfalds most recently dropped a 5-3 contest in Spruce Grove.
Six minutes had passed before the Bulldogs found their first goal of the game, and it took an assist from a stanchion that got them off the mark. Jack Plandowski cycled the puck to the point for David Brandes, who rang the puck around the boards. As the puck had carried behind the goal, it struck the stanchion between two pieces of glass and took a Bulldogs bounce into the slot. Kody Willick was first to react and beat Grizzlys goaltender Marcus Cumberworth through his legs to make it 1-0. In the six minutes following, Blackfalds would continue the pressure, and continue the goals. Brendan Ross made it 2-0 with a bank shot out of mid-air, Jack Plandowski scored on a rebound in front after Cumberworth had denied Layne Loomer, and finally, Jason Siedem drove to the net and fired the puck in to make it 4-0.
Cade Moxham thought he’d given the Grizzlys a lifeline with an early second-period powerplay goal, but 30 seconds after Olds made it 4-1, Tyler Wallace beat Marcus Cumberworth with a slick move in tight to extend the Bulldogs lead again. Wallace and Otto Hanson then helped Blackfalds open up a 7-1 advantage, with Wallace’s goal coming on a powerplay. Niklas Gudmundson made it 7-2 late in the second, and Liam Hughes danced his way through the Bulldogs defence early in the third to make it a four-goal game. After Ryder Many Grey Horses had a goal disallowed due to a high-stick, Blackfalds put the game to bed with four straight goals to close out the game, with Layne Loomer, Kurt Gurkan, Hanson, and Connor Dick notching goals to make it an 11-3 game.
Blackfalds’ 11 goals meant big nights for a few players, including a goal and three assists from Layne Loomer. Tristan Boileau earned himself a win in his Bulldogs debut, making 23 saves in the process. Blackfalds and Olds play the second half of their back-to-back Saturday night in Olds, closing the book on their season series with their sixth and final meeting.