Yukon Rivermen goaltender looks back as the puck bounces towards the goal line, during recent game action at Takhini Arena in Whitehorse on Oct 28. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Yukon Rivermen drop first three games at home

‘I think this weekend leaves the players and coaching staff with a lot of confidence’

Amy Kenny | Special to the News

At first, they were just there to compete. Now that the Yukon Rivermen know they can do that, they’re there to win.

That’s what Joey Schultz said this week after the Rivermen, a brand new bantam Tier 1 team in Whitehorse, played their first three games against the Thompson Blazers at Takhini Arena over the weekend.

The Blazers won all three games (2-0, 3-1, 6-3) with Schultz walking away from the final game on Sunday with a hat trick.

Schultz, 14, said they’re feeling good about the experience.

“We got a lot of pucks on the net and we had a pretty good forecheck that weekend,” he said. “We’ve definitely got to work on our power play and getting pucks in the net though.”

Head coach Martin Lawrie echoed those sentiments.

Lawrie said the team needs to work on capitalizing on its power plays (“I think we were 0 for seven on the power play in game two,” he said), though he thought they did well with their penalty kills.

In fact, the team’s first goal on Sunday was a shorthanded, unassisted marker by Schultz when the Rivermen were down one due to a penalty.

The team was at its best during the second period. After the Blazers’ Owen Barrow skated straight up to the net and dumped the puck in on Rivermen goalie Dawson Smith, the Rivermen responded with two goals in quick succession.

Schultz’s second goal came roughly three minutes after Barrow’s, with an assist from teammate Connor Cozens. A few minutes later, assisted by Layton Feist, Schultz put another one down, riling up the crowd at Takhini.

By the end of the second period, it was 4-3 for the Blazers, and the Rivermen were still looking strong. However, the Blazers scored twice more in the third, with an early goal from Reagan Milburn, and a later one from Carter Streek widening the gap.

On Monday morning, the Rivermen were back on the practice ice at the Canada Games Centre.

Lawrie said the coaching staff would compare notes this week, and identify what the Rivermen need to work on.

“It was good to get those games in for sure,” said Lawrie. “We’ve gone five weeks without a hockey game. Normally you get to play and evaluate what you need to work on and play again. We just didn’t have that option.”

Overall, he said, the team was feeling good about the weekend. It was the first tier one experience for a lot of the players, Lawrie said. He thinks it taught them they do belong in a tier one league, and showed them they can play a hard game.

“All in all, I was happy with the effort. I was happy with the work the boys put in and I think this weekend leaves the players and coaching staff with a lot of confidence,” Lawrie said. “I think we’re going to be a team to be reckoned with going forward.”

The Rivermen travel to Vernon and Kelowna on Remembrance Day weekend. Their next three home games take place at Takhini Arena Dec. 1-3.

Contact the Yukon News at editor@yukon-news.com

 

Yukon Rivermen Ashton Underhill tries to deke out a Thompson Blazer. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Yukon Rivermen celebrate after a goal during recent action at Takhini Arena in Whitehorse on Oct. 28. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Just Posted

Hospital cancels Whitehorse woman’s surgery 45 minutes beforehand

Patricia Nowell-Lindquist had changed into a gown and was fully prepped when she was told the news

UPDATED: Cross Country Yukon starts GoFundMe campaign for stolen pump

The theft means snowmaking is on hold until a replacement is found

Rams, Crusaders continue Super Volley winning streaks

Vanier secures first overall in boys standings

Cannabis Yukon opens in a blaze of glory

Yukoners spent $59,900 on legal cannabis on the first day

Commentary: Does Yukon need a United Way?

“The reason we ask is that we may not be sustainable”

Whitehorse FC sides impress at B.C. tournaments

Four teams, four tournaments, only one loss

Yukon soccer teams represent at Canada Soccer National Championships U15 Cup

“Everybody brought their game to a totally new level and set a (new) bar”

Yukonomist: The greying of the Yukon

It’s the kind of thing you might see in a society that suffered a major war twenty years ago

History Hunter: New book honours fallen Yukoners of World War I

The book introduces the story of Yukon’s wartime involvement and describes heroic contributions

Commentary: Celebrating Hanksgiving

Instead of a cornucopia centrepiece filled with autumn foods and flora, we use the Wilson volleyball

U Kon Echelon holds weekend mountain bike racing camp in Whitehorse

“It’s incredible the changes I’m seeing from when we started in September to now”

Liberals to scope out ‘efficiencies’ in departments

The premier was asked about ostensible reductions to department budgets at question period

Most Read