The Blackfalds Bulldogs were up and down to start the 2022-23 Alberta Junior Hockey League regular season.
After falling 2-1 to Central Alberta rival Olds Grizzlys on Friday in the season opener, the Bulldogs rebounded with a 3-2 win in Canmore Saturday.
Red Deer’s Brett Meerman opened the scoring early in the second and added another with 5:26 left in the frame. Bulldogs’ Jack Plandowski notched his first tally of the year just short of the midway mark in the third. Defenceman Tyler Teasdale and forward Jason Siedem each also chipped in two assists in the victory.
Charlie Zolin was strong in the Blackfalds net, with 35 saves on 37 shots for the victory.
Meerman scored the lone Blackfalds goal in the loss to Olds. After he opened the scoring, Sheldon Kwiatkowski tied the game, before Niklas Gudmundson buried early in the second on the power play. Kwiatkowski notched his second of the night on the power play late in the period to round out the scoring. Marek Andres was brilliant for Olds, with 41 saves in the win. Matthew Hennessey stopped 37 of 40 shots for Blackfalds.
The Grizzlys also earned another win Saturday, topping the Calgary Canucks 4-3 in a shootout.
Olds had a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes, with goals from Tanner Klimpke and Cade Moxham. Calgary cut the deficit in the second, but Olds made it 3-1 early in the third on a goal from David Clarke. Ty Hipkin scored twice for Calgary to tie the game. Kwiatkowski scored the only goal of the shootout, while Noah Nelson stopped all three shots for his first career AJHL victory. He made 35 saves in the win.