With the array of communication and scouting tools available to hockey clubs these days, there aren’t too many secrets in the game anymore.
At the Junior A level, there is a bit more of the unknown with some games captured on camcorders in arenas approaching heritage status.
Some teams outgun the opposition while others simply don’t allow many goals as their recipe for success. Right now, we’re going to go a bit old-school and simply crunch the numbers of the leading players we see from the rosters for the teams at this year’s Crescent Point Energy Western Canada Cup.
Host team – Ft. McMurray Oil Barons
The MOB has not played since March 9 when they were ousted in the AJHL first round by Sherwood Park. In the regular season, they did not have a top-10 goalie (as ranked by goals-against average) nor did they have a top-20 scorer.
Former BCHLer Jetlan Houcher led the club in the regular season with 39 goals and 32 assists. He led them in their four playoff games with two goals and two assists.
AJHL Champions – Spruce Grove Saints
The Saints can get it done enough offensively with Parker McKay and Jarid Hauptman basically both point-a-game players in the postseason. Hauptman was the leading goalscorer and pointgetter in the regular-season.
The signature of this club is it’s stellar goaltending with Matthew Murray and Brett Zarowny both getting significant crease time in the regular season and playoffs
MJHL Champions – Portage Terriers
The Terriers ran away and hid on the MJHL this year at 53-3-4 and were the No. 1 team in the CJHL rankings most of the season.
Zack Waldvogel won the league scoring title with 78 points and finished second to teammate Jordyn Boyd in playoff points. Defenceman Tanner Jago posted almost a point-a-game all season.
Goalie Justin Laforest posted a league-low (among starters) GAA of 2.13 and got the bulk of the work in the playoffs.
SJHL Champions – Melfort Mustangs
The ‘Stangs won the regular-season crown and went 12-2 on their way to the Canalta Cup.
Travis Mayan led the way among the forward group with 84 points to take the scoring title. Adam Fauchoux has stepped to the fore in the playoffs with 14 goals in 14 games.
Goalie Richard Palmer went 12-2 in the SJHL playoffs with a .922 save percentage.