Welcome back to the Three Stars of the Week which is brought to you by Paull Funeral Home and Crematorium. Every Monday we will be awarding three players who had a big week and giving them stars. We will be doing this week-to-week with points being collected throughout the season. The top three will players will be recognized and presented an award during our final home game of the season.
Before the season got underway Friday, Sept. 17 on home ice, a new captain was announced for the Swan Valley Stampeders. The player who will be leading the team throughout the year will be none other than 20-year-old Swan River product Carter Cockburn. We will have a feature story on him in the coming days.
Opening weekend wasn’t the Swan Valley Stampeders’ best as they dropped both their games to the Blizzard in a home-and-home mini-series. OCN skated to a 4-3 win in Swan River Friday night and collected a 5-3 win Saturday night in The Pas.
With 315 days in between hockey seasons and getting that game-ready feeling back, it appears things need a bit more time to gel. A bit of nerves and some rust showed on several players opening weekend but that is warranted after a very long break due to the COVID-19 shut down last November.
Dylan Black got both starts in goal and despite the losses, played exceptionally well between the pipes giving his team a chance to win both nights. Something that was an issue was goal scoring. Throughout both games, only six goals were scored by the Stampeders and four of them came from Swan River locals – Jackson Betcher and Cockburn. If Swan is going to win games in this league, they will need the rest of the team to step up and contribute.
It was a tough weekend for Stamps players going 0-2 to start the year but it was a great one overall. While losing isn’t fun, what I am talking about is the fact that hockey is FINALLY back. And the fans, well you all killed it Friday night at the Centennial Arena. The attendance Friday night is listed at 289 but it sounded more like 1,000 with the noise, singing, stomping your feet and cheering. We heard you, we saw you and we loved it. We hope you all can bring more of that as the season continues.
Three stars point system is as follows:
1st Star = 3 points
2nd Star = 2 points
3rd Star = 1 point
Check back every Monday for the Paull Funeral Home & Crematorium, Three Stars of the week.
THREE STARS (Sept. 12 – Sept. 19)
Noah Fladager is our first third-star recipient of the year. The 20-year-old from Campbell River, BC picked up a goal and an assist Saturday night in a losing cause to the OCN Blizzard. Fladager now sits second in team scoring.
Carter Cockburn edged out Fladager for this week’s second star award, simply for the fact the 20-year-old was announced as team captain prior to puck drop Friday night. The Swan River product collected a goal and an assist in two games against OCN this past weekend. Cockburn sits third in team scoring after two games.
Jackson Betcher takes the inaugural first star award of the season, and deservingly so. The 20-year-old is so offensively gifted you’d wonder why he’s playing defence. The speed and skill this youngster possesses makes him a must-watch player this year. The Swan River product collected a goal in each of the Stampeders losses this past weekend. He now sits atop the scoring leaders amongst his teammates.
Honourable mentions this week go to Jamie Valentino (2A) and Quinn Mulder (2A).
The Stampeders will try to regroup quickly as they will travel back to The Pas tomorrow night for another dance with the Blizzard. The two teams will finish off a four-game stint Friday, Sept. 24 in Swan River. Both games are at 7 pm and can be viewed on HockeyTV.com.
STANDINGS (Point Leaders)