FTLComm - Tisdale - December 5, 1999

For the second week in a row the Ramblers took on the Birch Hills Blackhawks and for a second Saturday in a row defeated them. Last night's game saw the Ramblers put in four goals before the single goal scored by the Blackhawks and the score went on to eight to 1.

While last week's game seem to be rather slow in pace this game was much better played by both teams as the Blackhawks were able to play better organisation hockey even though the Ramblers out skated and shot their opposition.

Tisdale lost their Friday night game to Nipawin giving them a season record of five wins and two loses but they lead the league with eleven points. Birch Hills is number two in
the league with a three and four record and a total of eight points.

In the picture (below right) is the scene as the Blackhawks score their only goal of the night as Jon Hamlin found himself to far out of his net and the puck got by him spoiling what was looking like a possible shut out.

The Friday night game saw the Ramblers hold their own in the first two periods and Nipawin moved ahead for an 8 - 6 win in the third period.

In the past few games the Ramblers have solidified their lines some what with Neil Elmslie's checking line being the one that has made life difficult for their opponents. With Luc Simoneau playing as a crushing forward this line has been the "in your face" bunch. As for scoring the Ramblers are seeing an excellent distribution of goals between their formidable experienced players and this year's hard skating and aggressive rookies. Jeremy Markwart, Jordan Spagrud, Ryan Turcotte have each been put the rubber in the net while Scott Homslot has been getting the shots but the goalies have been catching them.

Pete McAvoy, Jim Fafonoff, Brad Farber, Lee Morgan and Brad Kirkland have put the polish on the Rambler defense to the point that they have established puck control in each game and kept things always going toward the opposition. It is when this system breaks down that goals have been scored against the team.

(As I was getting the pictures for this story I had the video camera pointed at the Blackhawks goal and this group of fans called to me, I swung the camera toward them and got this picture but at that moment the Ramblers scored goal number five)

Classic hockey has become so much of a shot and chase thing it is good to see the

Ramblers employing a much more controlled game with "shot and chase" being used only in short handed and power play situations. This means that accurate passing and experienced defense is necessary to put the puck on the forwards sticks and get the plays organised well behind your own blue line.

There was a smaller then usual crowd on hand for last night's game as last week's game suggested that Birch Hills would not do well but after Kinistino having defeated the Ramblers everyone is looking forward to a big crowd next Saturday night when the Tigers take to the ice.