Alberta Red captain Jamie Weller, along with alternates Connor Gourley and Liam Watkins hoist the 2019 Alberta Cup. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Alberta Red captures 2019 Alberta Cup

Alberta Red discovered a real flair for the dramatics at the 2019 Alberta Cup.

After a 6-3 come-from-behind win over Alberta Black on the final day of round robin Saturday, Red embraced the drama during Sunday’s Final at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre.

They overcame a disallowed goal, a missed penalty shot and trailed 1-0 through 40 minutes in the rematch with Alberta Black.

Kaiden Wiltsie tucked home a breakaway 5:48 into the third and 91 seconds later, Timothy Tychonick scored the go-ahead goal for Red. Wiltsie capped the comeback on the power play with 2:01 to go in the contest.

From there, the party was on for the comeback kids and Red head coach Marian Gmitter said he knew his group could close it out once they went ahead in the third.

“We knew we had skill, we knew we had speed and we wanted to play wide and attack the net. The boys stuck to it, we had some bumps on the road. Really good group. They never give up. We talked about it in the dressing room, game isn’t over until it’s over,” he said.

“At that age, for them to learn to not give up, even though you’re down– (Saturday) we were down 3-1, must win game and we came back and won 6-3. We are really proud of this group.”

Red captain Jamie Weller, who was a steadying influence on the blueline for his group in the win said he was proud of the way they came together in the final.

” We just battled back. We were down, but we weren’t out. Had the goal waved off and missed a penalty shot. We just had to keep believing and I think we did it pretty well,” he said.

“With the guys in that room, I wouldn’t want to win it with anyone else. A bunch of fierce competitors. Everybody bought in and it was a great team win.”

Goalie Ian Mills, a key piece to the comeback, stopped 23 shots in the victory was also player of the game for Red.

For a tournament that featured some of the top 2004-born players in Alberta, Coordinator for Hockey Alberta Dustin Moore said he was thrilled with how the week went.

He added for two high scoring teams to play such a strong defensive game in the final showed what kind of talent there is at the bantam-age group in the province.

“It just goes to show you how competitive they are and how much these kids want to win,” said Moore.

“That’s what we’re looking for at Team Alberta. We want good character kids that can win hockey games.”

The final was heartbreak for Alberta Black, who rolled through the tournament until their first loss Saturday. Seven players from Alberta Black were members of the Red Deer Bantam AAA Rebels. Black goalie Kaiden Toussaint of Rimbey was stellar in the final, turning aside 32 shots in the loss.

Blue wins fifth-place game

In the ‘C’ Final, Alberta Blue picked up a 5-1 win over Alberta Grey.

With a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes, Blue broke out with three unanswered goals in the third period to clinch the victory.

Nash Bamford, Jacob Lamoureux, Jordan Gustafson, Josh Davies and Cade Van Brabant all scored in the win. Red Deer’s Ty MacKenzie also had an assist for Blue.

Koehn Ziemmer was player of the game for Grey and Graydon Gotaas earned the award for Blue.

Alberta Green wins bronze

Alberta Green secured a third-place finish at the 2019 Alberta Cup with a dominant 10-3 win over Yellow. Green went ahead 3-0 in the opening frame, with a pair of goals from Rieger Lorenz and one by Hellyer and they never looked back. They added four in the second, with Bowden Singleton scoring a pair and Lorenz notched his hat trick on the power play. Matt Savoie scored the only Yellow goal in the second.

In the third, Singleton finished off his hat trick and Ryan Nolan added his second of the night, while Clayton also buried for Green. Singleton ended the afternoon with eight points and led the tournament with 16 points in just five games.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

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Alberta Red knocked off Alberta Black in the final of the 2019 Alberta Cup at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre on Sunday. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Alberta Red captain Jamie Weller, along with alternates Connor Gourley and Liam Watkins hoist the 2019 Alberta Cup. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

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