Like most sports, hockey games can turn in a matter of moments.
The Grande Prairie Storm learned that the hard way on Friday night.
The Bonnyville Pontiacs scored three times in a span of 3:42 in the first period to turn an early 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 lead.
It was a lead they would not relinquish, as they went on to beat the Storm 5-3.
The Storm had the early two goal cushion before the 10 minute mark of the first thanks to a pair of goals from rookie defenceman Wil Schimek, his first two goals in the AJHL.
But the Pontiacs would soon take advantage of some costly turnovers by the Storm in their own zone, and before you knew it, the 2-0 lead was gone and the home side was quickly having to play catch up to Bonnyville.
According to Storm coach Matt Keillor, those turnovers were the turning point in the game.
?Little details like that, and it is a little bit of a maturity thing as well. And when you play good teams, this is what happens. Their top line has around 50 points combined between the three of them. So when your turn pucks over to them, they put it in the back of the net.?
?We worked on some of those details on Wednesday night. When you play against a team like Drayton Valley, they don?t always bury those chances. But we looked at the video and we told the guys that if you do this and you make these mistakes on Friday night, it is not going to work and you will not walk out of the rink with a victory. And it shows.?
?It was close, we were hanging with them, but if you want to hang with the big guys and be in the top three of four (in the division), you can not make those mistakes. And if you, you have to limit those mistakes.?
Marc Antoine Benoit scored twice for Bonnyville, while Cam Newton, Cayden Shmyr and Thomas Kramer added singles, as the Pontiacs won their sixth straight game and improved to 8-1-1 on the season.
Nathan Morgan had the other goal for the Storm, his sixth of the season and fourth in as many games.
?We knew if we gave him the opportunity, it would just be a matter of time.? said Keillor about the 17 year old Calgary native. ?Now he is coing into his own He put in the work during the off season and came here in phenomenal shape. He is the hardest working guy on the ice and in the gym and the puck is going in for him right now.?
The Storm are now off from game action until next weekend when they will welcome Okotoks on Friday and Canmore on Saturday,
Both games will be played at the Coca-Cole Centre.
Photography by Tammenthia Diesel | Story by Jeff Henson with EverythingGP