By Cal Braid
Over the weekend, the Golden Suns of Taber went on the road and came home with three losses and one tie between the three teams.
The U13 Golden Suns played the Lethbridge Hurricanes at the Henderson Ice Centre on Mar. 5 and were overmatched, losing 8-1. The Canes almost doubled the Suns’ shots on goal by a margin of 40-21. The Canes scored early in the first period and then again with 0:36 on the clock before heading into the intermission up 2-0. Lethbridge struck three more times in the second, again shutting out the Suns. Down 5-0 going into the third, the Suns failed to rally, netting a lone goal from Hayden Wiscombe at 13:43 and ultimately coming away on the wrong side of an 8-1 final. The U13 Suns are 6-24-2, and in fifth place in their conference.
The U15 team played twice on Friday Mar. 3 at the Nicholas Sheran Leisure Centre. At 11:45 a.m., they squared up against the Okotoks Oilers and things went badly from the outset. The Oilers scored early and often, running up a 7-0 lead by the end of the first period. The Oilers’ momentum slowed in the second and they went scoreless, but the Suns could only manage one goal in response, that coming from Mason Noble at 1:38. The Oilers scored three more in the third period, and the Suns’ Truett Moeller netted one at 12:20 before the game ended in a lopsided 10-2 Oilers win. The game was marred by two game misconduct penalties against the Suns in the first, and two gross misconduct bench penalties against the Suns in the third.
Later in the day, the pucked dropped for an 8:30 p.m. game against the Lethbridge Hurricanes. The Suns didn’t vindicate themselves with a win, but it was a close game until late. The Canes scored at 15:15 of the first. The Suns’ Landon McKewen scored at 1:54 to even the game at one. Again in the second period, the Canes struck first before Chase Stronge fired one in for the Suns on a power play at 12:42. The game remained tied well into the third period until Lethbridge scored and took a 3-2 lead. Attempting to tie the game late, the Suns pulled goalie Griffin Stenger, but with 19 seconds left the Canes scored on an empty net to win 4-2. The U15 team is 2-31-2.
U18 headed north on Mar. 4 for a game versus the Airdrie Lightning, and the two teams played to a tie. Ryan Holm scored for the Suns on a power play at 11:47, but the Lightning led 3-1 at the first intermission. However, the Suns hung tough and shut the Lightning out for the rest of the game. Heath Hansen and Hayden Smith scored 20 seconds apart in the middle of the second period to tie the game at 3-3, and that was it. Neither team scored again. Goalie Keegan Stenger played all 60 minutes and finished strong, making 40 saves on 43 shots. U18 are now 11-18-5 and fifth in the south conference.