BROOKS, AB (October 9, 2023) – Make it six straight wins for the Brooks Bandits, as the powerplay went 3/5 and penalty kill 6/6 in a convincing 7-2 victory over the Fort McMurray Oil Barons on Monday at the Centennial Regional Arena.
Brendan Holahan (New Canaan, CT) made 15 saves for his third win of the season, while the Bandits (8-1) haven’t trailed in a game since September 22nd.
Forward Hunter Wallace (Oak Lake, MB) opened the scoring at 5:13 of the 1st period, tapping in a Nathan Free (Calgary, AB) pass on the powerplay to make it 1-0, the period’s only goal. Shots were 8-4 Brooks.
Brooks doubled the lead 4:20 into the 2nd period, as Josh Wiebe (Calgary, AB) scored on a forehand shot from a rebound for his first AJHL goal. But just 38 seconds later, Oil Barons Captain Keefe Gruener cleaned up a loose puck from a Rylan Ringor shot to cut the lead to 2-1. However, the Bandits powerplay once again converted, as Logan Sawyer (Calgary, AB) scored shortside on a Caelan Fitzpatrick (Moose Jaw, SK) rebound to make it 3-1 at 14:53. Sawyer scored again at 16:04, tapping in a behind-the-net pass from defenceman Ethan Beyer (Centennial, CO) to make it 4-1.
Brooks only needed 70 seconds of the 3rd period to make it 5-1, as defenceman Quinn McCall (St. John, IN) cleaned up a rebound from a Beyer shot. Fort McMurray got one back at 4:52, as Brett Boucher scored off the rush to cut the lead to 5-2. However, forward Parker Lalonde (Aberdeen, SK) would tip a Fitzpatrick shot at 11:08 to reclaim the four-goal lead making it 6-2 Brooks. With six minutes remaining, Free sealed the win with a wrist shot on the powerplay that beat Oil Barons starter Noah Nelson to make it 7-2. Final shots were 39-17 Brooks.
The Bandits continue their homestand on Friday, October 13th when they host the Lloydminster Bobcats at the CRA. Game time is 7:00 pm.