By Stephen Dafoe
Morinville – There was little discouragement in the Jets camp Wednesday night after the club was defeated 4-3 in a shootout with the Edmonton Mustangs. The loss gave the Jets one point for their troubles, and one point was all the club needed to ensure they got a first round playoff bye.
Back-to-back wins over the previous weekend propelled the Morinville Jets closer to sitting out the first round of CJHL playoffs this season; Wednesday’s win put the icing on the cake.
With 24 regular season wins and 51 points in the standings 37 games in, the Jets have broken two records this season in terms of wins and points. Seated firmly in the West Division’s top spot, the Jets needed to secure one point in their remaining two games to be assured a bye in the first round of playoffs, a position the club has never held in its more than 30 years of existence in Morinville. A first place finish would also give the Jets the home-ice advantage in the second round.
The Jets final regular season home game is Sunday night against the 22-11-3 Beverly Warriors, a club that had been nipping at the Jets’ heels for a first round bye.
Although there is no chance for the second-place Spruce Grove Regals to surpass the Jets in points as the club has one game remaining and sits three points behind, the Warriors have two games yet to play Friday and Sunday. With 47 points in the standings, back-to-back Warriors’ wins could cause the Jets some indigestion in terms of the first place finish and home-ice advantage they are hoping for.
Game time for Sunday’s regular season finale is 6:45 p.m. at the Ray McDonald Sports Centre.