Lacombe's new senior hockey team edged by Westlock in opening game of the season

Lacombe General Kyle Sheen controls the puck near the net of Stony Plain goaltender Kevin Nastiuk during Allan Cup Hockey West action at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex in Lacombe, Alta. on Friday, Feb. 1, 2019. The Generals won 5-3, then surrendered a 3-1 loss to the Rosetown Redwings Saturday.

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Lacombe’s new Senior AA Hockey Club, which is remaining under the Eckville Eagles banner for the time being until a new name has been decided upon, also played their first game, only on the road.

On Saturday, the team fell 4-3 to the Westlock Warriors.

The Eagles opened the scoring on the powerplay less than five minutes into the opening period on a goal by Jared Williams. Pat Turville would follow it up with their second goal of the game

With just 58 seconds left in the frame, however, Warrior Nicholas Bourgeois brought his team within one on the man advantage.

The Warriors would take that momentum into the second period, tying the game on another powerplay just 4:27 into the frame. Kelin Hrycuik would give the Warriors their first lead about three minutes later, but with 4:42 left to go in the period, Kyle Maas tied it for the Eagles.

However, Hrycuik would win it for the Warriors on a goal scored just 36 seconds into the third period, and the Eagles wouldn’t be able to even the score again.

The Eagles roster consists of several Lacombe players, including brothers Blair and Taylor Mulder who played on defence last year with the Innisfail Eagles. Blair had one goal and two assists last year in 16 games played, and added another two assists in playoffs, while Taylor had one goal and eight assists in 15 games.

Josh Smith, Troy Maclise and Kyle Maas are also local players on the roster.

They’re joined by a familiar face from the now former Lacombe Generals Senior AAA team in Kyle Sheen. Sheen previously played with the Eckville Eagles in the 2017-18 season, where he four goals and six assists in three regular season games played. In the playoffs, he added another four goals and nine assists in seven games played.

The Eagles will be back on the road Oct. 19 to face Morinville.

On Wednesday, Oct. 23 a handover ceremony will formally mark the “return” of senior hockey to Lacombe after the Lacombe Generals chose to withdraw from the Allan Cup Hockey West (ACHW), citing a lack of teams and reason to believe the league would be viable going forward. The ceremony is set to take place in the Generals dressing room with members of the City of Lacombe, Lacombe County and the Wildrose Athletic Corporation in charge of the Eagles, in attendance. Coverage will be provided by the Lacombe Globe.

Recently, the Generals and Viking Projects Ltd. gave a “legacy” donation of $5,000 to the NCHL.

“We proudly hosted a successful Allan Cup event in Lacombe in April. As part of the General’s legacy for hosting this event, we had committed to support Senior ‘AA’ hockey with a donation of $5,000 to help support and grow Senior ‘AA’ hockey in Alberta,” said Generals Dirctor Allan Ward in an explanation on the NCHL website.
“We as an organization are proud to provide the North Central Hockey League with this cheque.”

Their first home game in Lacombe will be on Sunday, Oct. 27 at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex. Puck drop is at 2 p.m.

Season schedule:

  • Oct. 19 @ Morinville
  • Oct. 27 vs. Westlock at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 2 p.m.
  • Nov. 2 vs. Devon at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 8 p.m.
  • Nov. 3 @ Blackfalds at the Bentley Arena, 2:30 p.m.
  • Nov. 17 @ Fort Saskatchewan
  • Nov. 23 vs. Bonnyville at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 8 p.m.
  • Nov. 29 vs. Red Deer at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 8:15 p.m.
  • Nov. 30 @ Red Deer at the Penhold Multiplex, 7:30 p.m.
  • Dec. 7 vs. Morinville at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 8 p.m.
  • Dec. 14 @ Daysland
  • Dec. 21 vs. Blackfalds at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 8 p.m.
  • Jan. 4 vs. Fort Saskatchewan at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 7:45 p.m.
  • Jan. 11 @ Bonnyville
  • Jan. 17 vs. Daysland at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, 8:15 p.m.
  • Jan. 18 @ Devon

abarrett@postmedia.com

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