Off the ice, with protocols, limited fans and checklists, things looked much different at Servus Arena on the weekend.
But as hockey returned on the ice, it was much of the same for the Red Deer U15 AAA Rebels.
The club kicked off the Alberta Elite Hockey League season with a home and home series against the Leduc Oil Kings and earned a pair of victories.
Red Deer won 5-2 Saturday to open the season at home and followed that with an 8-1 win Sunday in Leduc.
Five different goal scorers found the net Saturday, with Dylan Ronald, Caleb Hadland, Brady Leroux, William Jamieson and Brett Leslie recording tallies. Riley Yzerman and Walker Overwater also each added a pair of assists, while Connor Baumbach stopped 20 shots for his first win.
Hadland and Jamieson kept rolling Sunday, each adding two goals in the 8-1 win. Jamieson also netted a pair and Cooper Moore led the way with three assists. Spencer Claerhout and Brett Leslie each had two helpers. Brandon Broks got the win in net with 32 saves. Red Deer was 4-for-10 on the power play Sunday.
Red Deer will host the Oil Kings on Oct. 24 at 2 p.m. at Servus Arena. Capacity is still limited to 100 fans.
U18AAA Optimist Chiefs
The Red Deer U18AAA Optimist Chiefs also got the regular season started on the weekend.
Red Deer fell 4-3 on opening night to the Airdrie CFR Bisons but bounced back Sunday with a 10-4 win over the Bisons in Airdrie Sunday.
In the loss, Nate Danielson tallied a pair of goals and Ty Daneault also added a marker. Justin Gyori recorded a pair of assists and Colby Knight made 22 saves in the loss. Jayden Henderson, Danielson, Daneault and Kaiden Ellertson also had assists in the loss.
Danielson posted a four-point night in the victory Sunday, with a hat trick and an assist. Henderson also had a huge game, with a goal and four helpers. Daneault added two goals and an assist. Ephram McNutt and Andrew Wallace each recorded a pair of assists.
Kaiden Toussaint picked up the win in net with 37 saves.