By Stephen Dafoe
Morinville – Halloween put an unwanted candy in the St. Albert Merchant’s pillowcase Sunday afternoon. The Jets (6-7-1) pulled out of a 5-2 deficit at the end of the second period to take the game 6-5, their second come-from-behind victory over the Merchants this season. The Jets had previously overcome a 5-0 deficit in St. Albert’s barn Oct. 1 to win the game 6-5.
“It’s not going to continue to happen” said Head Coach Scott Rodda of the Jets’ ability to bounce back from behind when facing the Merchants. “They’re a good club. They skate well. They’re disciplined, too. We just got some lucky bounces near the end. We can’t be waiting for that to happen. We’ve got to come out and play 60 minutes.”
In Sunday afternoon’s Halloween showdown, the Jets ended the first period trailing the Merchants 2-1 and went into the final period trailing St. Albert 5-2. However, things turn began to turn around in the final 11 minutes of the game when Tory Sedrovic picked up the Jets’ third goal of the game, a goal that was followed by two from Alternate Captain Aaron Baumgartner at 8:39 and 8:05, bringing the game to a 5-5 tie. With 19 seconds left in the period, Ryan Hauptman, assisted by Jorey McRae and Brayden Arcand, gave the Jets their game-winning goal.
The victory added another two points to the Jets’ tally this season and built upon the two points they earned for Friday night’s 3-2 victory over the 5-5-3 Fort Saskatchewan Hawks.
In that contest, the Jets ended the first period tied 1-1 with the Hawks, but left the ice at the end of the second period leading 2-1. The Jets picked up another midway through the final frame to give them a 3-1 lead, but allowed a short-handed goal into their net to bring the Hawks within one of tying the game.
Rodda said discipline played a factor in the Jets back-to-back victories over the weekend.
“For the most part, we stayed out of the box,” Rodda said of Friday night’s road game against the Hawks. “It doesn’t look like it – 79 minutes, but at least we were taking other guys with us.”
Sunday’s game earned the Jets but four minutes of penalty time and a game misconduct for a fight between the Jets’ Colton Sedrovic and the Merchant’s Kevin Pollard.
Rodda said the club will practice hard this week to prepare for one road and one home game on the weekend. The Jets travel to Edmonton Friday night to take on the 4-7-1 Edmonton Mustangs and return to the Ray McDonald Sports Centre Sunday afternoon to take on the 6-6-2 Wetaskiwin Icemen. Game time for Sunday’s home-ice contest is 2 p.m.