So much for building off a strong performance. The Grande Prairie Storm were coming off their best game of the season, but couldn't keep the momentum going Sunday afternoon, falling 5-3 to the Whitecourt Woverines at the Canada Games Arena.
The loss left the Storm 1-1 on their short homestand, after an excellent outing on Thursday, which saw Grande Prairie hammer Bonnyville 8-3. Head coach Matt Hughes says it's frustrating to not be able to keep the momentum going from one game to the next.
“We've got to start rising to the expectations we set for ourselves. There's a lot of new players on this team, but eleven games into the season it's time for us to start to gel.”
As is so often the case, the Storm fell behind early in the game, as the Wolverines struck just 80 seconds into the contest. Grande Prairie would battle back to take the lead early in the second on goals by Ryan Baskerville and Landon Gross. However, Whitecourt would regain a 3-2 lead through forty minutes on a pair of goals Hughes admits were a bit suspect.
“Nick (Kulmanovsky) would be the first to tell you they weren't great goals. I liked the way our team came out at the start of the second, but then they scored those two that shouldn't have gone in.”
The visitors stretched the lead early in the third period before Toby Shattler tallied midway through the period to once again make it a one-goal game. Wolverines would ice it, however, as they scored just 1:11 after Shattler had made it close.
Powerplays were not a factor in this one, which was a fairly calm affair. Both teams went 0-for-3 with the man advantage.
The loss dropping the Storm back under the 500 mark on the season at 5-6, as they now head out on the road for three games in as many nights. Thursday, they are in Camrose, Friday it's Drayton Valley and then Saturday they face the Wolverines again, in Whitecourt.
– Story by Don Whiteford of www.PeaceCountrySports.com.