CHANCE IN CLOSE Lloydminster PWM midget AAA Steelers left wing Jade Sandberg drives to the Edmonton Pandas net during an exhibition game between the two clubs at the Robert B. Holmes Memorial Arena on Sunday. JAMIE HARKINS LSS PHOTO
The only thing missing from the Lloydminster PWM midget AAA Steelers first exhibition win of the season was a belief they could successfully pick corners.
The Steelers shut out the Edmonton Pandas 3-0 at the Robert B. Holmes Memorial Arena on Sunday afternoon by outworking their opponents from the drop of the puck.
The continued offensive zone pressure resulted in a number of quality scoring chances in the first period, and one shot that found its way short side into the top corner 5:59 into the middle frame.
“I honesty thought I missed the net, but it went back bar,” said Steelers defenceman Tianna Yaremko, who wired the puck from the bottom of the circle after driving down the wing to the Pandas net from her own end. “That was a big goal.”
The Steelers stepped up their play following the marker with Taylor Wilkinson finding the back of the net a little over six minutes later, by firing a shot high on Pandas goalie Emma Stephen that somehow found its way over the line to the obvious surprise and delight of the shooter.
Jenna Plamondon made it a three-goal lead 17 seconds into the third period through picking up an Anderson rebound at the top of Stephen’s crease and potting the puck into an open side.
Bella McKee ensured the local girls would walk away with the win late in the game, by making a split-second blocker save on a deflected shot from Pandas forward Madison Porter, before stoning Chloe Geraldes with a shoulder stop in close off a clear breakaway.
“We played yesterday in Edmonton and we got outworked bottom line,” said Steelers coach Randy Laumbach.
“I thought today we outworked them and it showed (through) scoring chances. Turnovers, we generated a lot and we didn’t have many ourselves. It was just a great team effort.”
Laumbach said the message to the girls after Saturday’s 3-1 setback to the Pandas was to clean up the neutral zone and look after their own end.
He said the girls did that from the start to get the momentum squarely on their side. and that’s exactly how they need to continue to play.
“Honestly, it’s just a great group of girls,” said Yaremko. “This year is just going to be awesome with the new coaching. We’ve got a talented group and we’re willing to work hard.”