DIDSBURY - The Mountainview Colts opened the 2023-24 season with two games at home at the Memorial Complex over the weekend, against the Cannex Cochrane Generals on Friday and against the Three Hills Thrashers on Saturday.
The Colts won Saturday’s game after losing Friday’s match.
On Friday, Colts forward Steven Bell got a goal in the first period, assisted by Haiden Parks and captain Paton Rothenbusch.
Bell scored again in the second, again with assist from Parks and Rothenbusch.
Bell completed the hat-trick with a power-play goal in the third, assisted by Aidan Sanders and Rothenbusch.
Bell was the Colts’ top scorer in the 2022-23 season.
Both Jordan McGinnis and Kyle Allan saw time in goal for the Colts. They stopped a combined 37 shots in the 9-3 loss to Cochrane.
The Colts were back at the Memorial Complex on Saturday against the Three Hills Thrashers.
In the first period, the Colts got goals from Cohen Richardson (unassisted), Jay Heistad (assist Wyatt Bailey), Steven Bell (assists Rothenbusch and Blake Stoddard), and Simon Leischner (unassisted).
Parks got the lone goal in the second, with assists from Bell and Saunders.
The Colts continued their scoring ways in the third with makers from Treydon Brien (assist Zane Labbe), Heistad (assist Emmett Barnett), and Stoddard (assist Parks and Mitchell McDermid).
Colts netminder Allan stopped 29 of 30 shots in the 8-1 Colts win.
In Saturday’s game, the Colts had 60 shots on the Thrashers’ net, allowing only 30 in return.
Head coach Dan Visser said it was a weekend of two completely different games.
“Our first game, the score didn’t reflect on our play,” he told the Albertan. “Lot of mental mistakes that led to goals that shouldn’t have happened. I believe four short-handed goals against didn’t help our cause.
“The good thing is that’s easy to fix. We have a roster full of rookies and with time they will only get better.”
Saturday’s game was a much overall better performance from the Colts, he said.
“Second game the boys showed our true colours as they dominated the game for 60 minutes and never changed the way they played,” he said.
“Their hard work and sticking with the game plan is what they gave all game. This is what is needed each and every game.”
Visser also commented on the very strong start for forward Steven Bell, with four goals and an assist only two games into the season.
“Yes Steven is a great player and I didn’t expect anything less from him,” he said. “He is a top player in the league and his speed is his huge asset.”
The Heritage Junior B Hockey League Colts play in Three Hills on Friday, followed by a Saturday tilt in Coaldale against the Copperheads.
The Colts are next at home in the Memorial Complex against the Copperheads on Oct. 7.