Sunday, August 28, 2011

Intra Squad Recap

And it officially begins!! Today was the annual Blue vs White Intra-Squad game at the Coliseum and the final chance for some of these guys to show the coaching staff what they've got. The game itself was a fast paced one with little interruption through the first period as the players got used to being back on the ice. (Click here to download the game roster).

Kirk Thompson (1) makes one of his toughest saves
of the games, kicking out a screened point shot
The first two periods of play left no tallies on the board as Marcus Beesley made 12 saves in period one for Team White and Robert Freisen made 10 in period two. Both Kirk Thompson and Jacob Mattes made 7 saves a piece in the first two periods for Team Blue. Fans in attendance had to wait until 6:21 of the third period for the first goal to hit the score sheet.

Local Prince George product Sean Landrey notched the first marker, firing a wrister from the top of the right circle. Spruce Kings returnee Connor Tiechko had an assist on the goal as did defenceman Skylar Pacheco. It only took five more minutes for Team White to add to their lead as Eric Chore put one past Cameron Large. Chore's goal was assisted on the play by his brother Patrick Chore and once again Connor Tiechko. That is where the scoring ended, but not before Team Blue had a couple of nice chances, including a shorthanded breakaway opportunity for Myles Fitzgerald. Cameron Large ended the third period making 11 saves and Jacob Mattes was perfect with 9.

A few players did not suit up in the Blue VS White game as a precaution due to injury. Jeff Earnest, Leo Fitzgerald, Ben Woodley and Paul Dejersey all watched from the stands today.

There were a lot of good things to take away from this Intra Squad game as the Spruce Kings move forward into the Exhibition Season. The two Fitzgerald triplets who played (Myles and Gerry) showed some amazing offensive potential, and all though they didn't score, they were all over the ice. The defence is absolutely massive, and will be the leading force for the Spruce Kings this year. All the defenceman who did play in the scrimmage today showed the strength required to be an elite player. After last season, General Manager Mike Hawes needed to address this position, and it looks like he did just that. The goaltending today was also a big bright spot, as all six goalies showed promise and many made spectacular saves. So although only 2 goals were scored, this was due more to great defensive play rather than a lack of offence. But perhaps the biggest note to take away from today's game, this team really looks like they are having fun on the ice, which is never a bad thing.

Now the coaching staff will decide who will go forward and play for the team during Exhibition. It all starts on September 2nd as the Spruce Kings and the Merritt Centennials will travel to 100 Mile House to square off. As always keep it locked to the blog, twitter and the facebook page for all the roster updates, exhibition action and news leading into the start of the season on September 23rd

Matt Anthony

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