Opinion

Gingras red hot against Flames

Rebels 3 Flames 2

Sometimes even the best teams need their goaltender to steal a win for them and that’s exactly what Adam Gingras did for the Red Deer Optimist Rebels on Sunday afternoon at the Arena.

Gingras made 40 saves in a 3-2 Rebels win over the Calgary Flames in the Alberta AAA Midget Hockey League.

“He had some rebounds, two and three in a row and kicked the pads out on a couple of them,” Rebels head coach Brent Fudge said. “He had a solid, solid game.”

Gingras is one half of an impressive tandem the Rebels have in net this year. He has split time equally with teammate Marc Boulanger and Gingras said there is a good rapport between the two netminders.

“He’s a good guy. We each battle for each other and make sure that we’re going. We’ll get even time if we’re both battling,” Gingras said.

The fourth-place Flames came out quickly against the Rebels and peppered Gingras with 27 shots in the first half of the contest, including a flurry to open the second period. Gingras stood tall and made some great saves in close.

“The boys let me see the puck today. I found the puck good in the scrambles and they played well in front of me,” Gingras said. “I like seeing lots of pucks, it gets me in the game.”

Some of his highlight reel material came on odd-man rushes when he went post-to-post to deny the Flames.

“You have to follow the puck to the shooter, then watch where he’s going to shoot. Hopefully you’re square to your net,” Gingras explained. “You have to practise to make sure you’re on your positioning.”

The graduate of the Sylvan Lake minor hockey program was awarded the game puck by the coaching staff.

Colin Dueck scored both goals for Calgary on power plays. Dallas Goodrunning got a power-play goal for Red Deer in the first period. Kyle Reynolds and affiliate player Clayton Jardine added even-strength goals in the second.

Jardine, who plays on the elite 15-year-old North Star Chiefs, contributed a goal and an assist for the midget team. His quick snapshot froze Flames goaltender Mark Friesen and proved to be the game winner.

“He played a solid game. He set up the one goal from behind the net and then the second goal he shot it and kind of got a break,” Fudge said.

Cory Kloss, another North Star player, manned the blue-line for Red Deer in place of injured rearguard Kaare Odegard.

The Rebels won both their games this weekend to open the second half of their season. The victories, combined with a pair of losses by the Strathmore Bisons, gave Red Deer a four-point lead in the Chrysler Division.

Sunday’s game was a physical affair with the teams combining for 95 minutes in penalties, including three 10-minute misconducts and a pair of game misconducts.

“It was a good, intense game. It was fast and got a little mean there at the end,” Fudge said.

The Rebels’ next home game is Saturday when the Calgary Buffaloes visit the Arena for a 5:15 p.m. game. Red Deer lost to the Buffaloes in the bronze medal game at Mac’s Midget Tournament on New Year’s Day.

Contact Peter James at pjames@redeeradvocate.com

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