Monday, February 21, 2011

The Last Two Days.....

It's been a couple of good days off for the Blazers as they look ahead to Wednesday's game in Lethbridge vs the Hurricanes. It'll be another crucial game in the race for the playoffs featuring two teams fighting for their lives.

I think I've calmed down a little following what was in my opinion the most poorly officiated game of the season Saturday night in Red Deer. I don't often blog about my disdain about how games are refereed but Saturday's game was beyond the level of acceptability. Both teams I'm sure would agree.

I won't get into specifics as the game is over and both teams have moved on but I will cite one example...

The Rebels first goal was reviewed upstairs after it appeared that F Andrej Kudrna deflected it in with his glove on a shot from D Aaron Borejko. After review, they deemed Kurdna did not make contact with the puck with his glove and called it a goal - Borejko's 2nd of the season. Fair enough. Move on right?

In the intermission, the off ice official comes up to me and says " there's been a scoring change... credit the first goal to Kudrna it went off his glove." Isn't that what they were reviewing all along?? Now they were saying Kudrna did in fact deflect it with his glove and to change the goal to his. You have to be kidding.

That was the kind of night it was.....

Anyways, the Blazers spent yesterday and last night at Circle Square Ranch near Halkirk, AB. It's a spot they visit regularly to take in some team building activities and get away for a night.

There's some ranch pics below.

Today the club held a practice in Castor, AB. A town of about 850 people.

Castor Rink
Brendan Ranford and Dylan Willick at Castor.

Blazer bus parked just outside the rink

Blazer alumni Shane Doan and Darcy Tucker played their minor hockey out of Castor. Shane is the third from the left in the back row in this Atom team photo.

Darcy Tucker with the "A" on his sweater in the front row. Shane Doan is at the end of the front row. The bantam Castor Crusaders.

Back at Circle Square Ranch... the guys did some rock climbing this morning. Cam Lanigan scales the wall in the gym.

Chase Souto makes the climb while Colin Smith and JC Lipon look on.

The horses out back. It was too cold to go horseback riding. A lot of the guys were disappointed. Wind chills up to -40 put a damper on outdoor fun. Trust me, we took some pics out here and quickly bailed for the indoors.

Games room downstairs. Brendan Ranford and Chase Schaber team up.

The guys watched the outdoor classic on the big screen in the dining hall.

Some team building games upon arrival.

The ranch is run by Tom and Laurie Weppler. They are formally of Morse, SK ( 50km east of Swift Current) and were longtime Bronco fans. They've been running the ranch now since 2008.

With all activities and things to do available, the guys (of course) chose a spirited game of floor hockey. Our team prevailed in the best-of-seven thanks to stellar goaltending from Dylan Willick who out-dueled his counterpart Scott Ferguson in the other end. Some key shot blocks from Jeff Bosch on the back-end and even the radio guy added some offense.

It was a short stay, but it was a good time.
The Blazers are still awaiting word on D Josh Caron who has been suspended indefinitely by the WHL for his hit on Josh Cowen of the Red Deer Rebels Saturday. Cowen has apparently suffered a broken wrist. The hit was initially assessed as a minor penalty but was changed after Rebels Coach Jesse Wallin had a chat with the officials. They changed it to a major and Caron was tossed from the game. The length of the suspension should be known soon but Caron won't play Wednesday in Lethbridge.

It sounds like F Jordan DePape will be moved to defense for the game and for the time being.

The Blazers are also expecting 15 year-old Cole Ully to join the team for the Lethbridge game. The forward is fresh off a bronze medal at the Canada Winter Games in Halifax playing for Team Alberta.
Ully, a 2nd round pick of the Blazers from this past summer is said to be a skilled forward. He recently committed to the Blazers organization.

That's all I got... I'll try to post again tomorrow.



MJWillick said...

Thanks for sharing again Jon... I love that I come on and see what the boys are up too! Looks like you all are having a great time, in between the practices! Good luck in Lethbridge! We'll be cheering loud and proud from home! =D

Anonymous said...

As long as the puck isn't thrown into the net, it can be directed in off a glove, or any other part of the body. Just FYI.