Photo by JOSH ALDRICH/Advocate staff -- Josh's story -- Red Deer Vipers Justin Van Tetering is slashed by Ponoka Stampeders defenceman Austin Ancion as he breaks in for a shot on Stampeders goalie Eli Falls in Heritage Junior B Hockey League action on Monday

Vipers roll into Christmas break with win over Stampeders

The Red Deer Vipers almost squandered any momentum they gained off their win over the first place Blackfalds Wranglers over the weekend on Monday. Almost. After a hairy opening 30 minutes, the Vipers finally found their legs and closed out the last place Ponoka Stampeders 5-3 in Heritage Junior B Hockey League action at the Red Deer Arena.

The Red Deer Vipers almost squandered any momentum they gained off their win over the first place Blackfalds Wranglers over the weekend on Monday.

Almost.

After a hairy opening 30 minutes, the Vipers finally found their legs and closed out the last place Ponoka Stampeders 5-3 in Heritage Junior B Hockey League action at the Red Deer Arena.

The win followed a 5-1 victory over the Wranglers on Saturday, handing them their first regulation loss of the campaign, but this did not look like the same team as two days previous.

“I think it was we were so high and I think we thought we could just show up tonight and not put an effort in and get the two points,” said Vipers head coach JD Morrical. “We lucked out tonight we at least came with an effort in the third period to get (a goal) and played just good enough to win.”

Cole deGraaf led the Vipers with two goals and an assist while Dustin Spearing also scored twice and Captain Justin Corbett once. Lane Congdon made 35 saves for the win, though he looked shaky on at least two of the Stamps goals.

Teegan Colonna replied with two goals for Ponoka while Tye Munro got the other. Eli Falls made 38 saves in the loss.

The Vipers actually did most of their scoring in the first half of the game when they were being dominated by the Stampeders.

The opened up a 3-1 lead in the first period on two goals by Spearing and Corbett’s marker, but Ponoka cut the lead to one goal a with 36 seconds left in the frame and held a 16-9 lead in shots at the break.

Ponoka controlled the first 10 minutes of the second period, scoring the equalizer at 4:13, and held Red Deer without a shot on net for the first 10 minutes.

But finally, the Vipers turned it around and took over the game. It all turned on deGraaf’s power-play goal at 11:44 with Ponoka’s Braedon Grant in the box for cross checking.

After that the Stampeders lost their composure and Red Deer never looked back.

deGraaf added his second of the contest at14:07 of the third period to effectively put the game on ice.

The win sends Red Deer into the Christmas break on a two-game winning streak and some positive vibes as they try to turn around a frustrating opening two-thirds of the season.

“I think they need a little bit of a break, they need a little bit of time to themselves to just get back on track and come back focused in the new year,” said Morrical.

NOTES — Ponoka finished 2-for-5 on the power play while Red Deer was also 2-for-5 … Red Deer’s next game is Jan. 3 at 8 p.m. when they host the Three Hills Thrashers at the Red Deer Arena.

Just Posted

Red Deer officials will allow Calgary to trial alcohol in parks

The result could determine if local rules are relaxed

RDSO plays ‘rousing’ Scottish tunes to celebrate Robbie Burns Day

Violinist Kai Gleusteen will solo at the Jan. 26 show at RDC Arts Centre

Updated: Sylvan Lake council adopts waterfront plan

Sustainable Waterfront Area Redevelopment Plan to guide development for next 20 years

Driver who backed into Red Deer pizzeria sentenced

David Andrew Amstutz sentenced for failing to remain at the crash scene

Shaw getting ready to raise prices for its main residential service, CEO says

CALGARY — Residential customers of Shaw Communications Inc. will likely see a… Continue reading

Rare ‘super blood wolf moon’ takes to the skies this Sunday

Celestial event happens only three times this century

Fashion Fridays: Inspirational gym outfits

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Company issues lifetime ban after man jumps from cruise ship

Nick Naydev posted the video last week showing him standing on the balcony of the Symphony of the Seas

Unruly passenger forces B.C.-bound flight to divert to Calgary

Police say charges are pending against a woman in her 40s

Inflation rises as higher airfares, veggie prices offset cheaper gas

Statistics Canada says inflation accelerated to two per cent in December

Canadian tattoo artist inks Toronto skyline on Blue Jays pitcher Stroman

Marcus Stroman found a way to show his appreciation for Toronto when… Continue reading

Team World sweeps opening day against Team North America at Continental Cup

LAS VEGAS — Team North America has some serious ground to make… Continue reading

SXSW to screen ‘Run This Town,’ which includes Rob Ford character

TORONTO — A drama that features a portrayal of the late Toronto… Continue reading

Fans buy ‘Little House on the Prairie’ star’s memorabilia

GENOA TOWNSHIP, Mich. — More than 200 items belonging to “Little House… Continue reading

Most Read