The Sherwood Park Crusaders are heading into this weekend’s Alberta Junior Hockey League Showcase on a high. The have won 6 games in a row and were ranked 7th in the latest CJHL Top 20 Rankings Although it might come as a bit of a surprise his team was ranked that high, Head Coach and GM Time Fragle has sights on bigger and better.
“Most people don’t remember rankings, they remember a long playoff run.”
Something after the start the Crusaders have had, isn’t out of the realm of possibility.
“The goal is to get better as the season goes on.” Fragle added.
The Crusaders certainly have. After dropping the first game of the season against Whitecourt, the Cru haven’t looked back, firing of 6 wins in a row including a 3-1 victory over the Spruce Grove Saints this past Saturday.
“We needed to be more discipline. 10 Penalty Kills is way too much. I did like our 3rd period and the boys played like they wanted the win.” Fragle recapping Saturday’s win.
Part of the Crusaders success was the play of captain Dillon Massie, chipping in with points and shot blocking.
“Dillon has been good from the start of the year. He just hasn’t been rewarded with points until this game.” Fragle spoke of his captain.
This will mark the 7th year of the AJHL Showcase, it will run from Thursday afternoon to Saturday evening at the Tri-Leisure Centre in Spruce Grove, Alberta. Almost, if not, every NHL, NCAA, CIS, ACAC, WHL team will be represented at the event, with all eyes on every AJHL team. It marks the one time all year, where all 16 AJHL will be at one event.
With so much exposure for every team, Tim Fragle’s message to his players will be just like any game.
“Don’t change a thing…be yourselves and play to you strengths”
The Cru draw 2 South Division opponents this weekend in Spruce, the Calgary Canucks Thursday afternoon at 4:30 and the Drumheller Dragons Saturday evening at 7.
Both the Canucks and Dragons head into the Showcase going in the opposite direction.
“The Canucks have been playing great coming in winning 3 in a row. Largely because of their goaltending and team defense. Meanwhile, even though they have lost their last 5, it’s simple when you play Drumheller, be ready to play or be ready to lose. They will work us into the ground & play physical.” Fragle speaking of his opponents this weekend.
The TransAlta Tri Leisure Centre is located at 221 Jennifer Heil Way in Spruce Grove, Alberta. Be sure to head out to Spruce Grove this weekend and cheer on the Cru.