Warman prevails over Clavet in playoff series

Josh Haley of the Warman Wildcats makes a strong move in front of the net but is stopped by Clavet Cougars goalie Casy Fitzsimmons, during a league playoff game at the Legends Centre on February 17

The Warman Senior Wildcats defeated the Clavet Cougars 6-2 in Game 3 of their best-of-three Twin Rivers Hockey League (TRHL) playoff series, to advance to Round 2 (the semifinals) of the playoffs.Both teams fought hard in every game of this series, and Warman overcame some penalty troubles in Game 3 for the win at the Legends Centre, on February 17.

“It felt really good (to get the win), but I thought that we need to work on our discipline because we took way too many penalties,” said Wildcats coach Kevin Reimer. “We’re getting very good at killing penalties, but next series it’s going to be a lot tougher.”

Despite coming up short in the series, Clavet coach Scott Barr was impressed with the way cougars played, since the Cougars forced a Game 3 after defeating the Wildcats 6-4 in Clavet on February 16.

“Our guys really dug deep and played real hard. From that double overtime (in Game 1), to a big win (in Game 2), to making it fairly close tonight. It was a really, really hard-fought series,” Barr said.

In Game 3, the Wildcats jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period after Brayden Anderson and Shayden Regush both scored on the power-play.

“The power-play had been surprisingly good today, and lots of guys who normally don’t get power-play time we’re getting time today, and it’s a nice surprise for sure,” Reimer said.

Clavet had some opportunities to score in the second period on a couple of 5-on-3 power-plays, however, Warman withstood that pressure to maintain its lead.
During the period Harris Cameron netted one for the Wildcats.

Derek Schlamp of the Clavet Cougars gets his shot past Warman Wildcats player Chris Gamble

Even though Clavet was looking at a three goal deficit entering the third period, the Cougars were not out of the game and they began the period on a 5-on-3 power-play for a minute and a half. The Cougars didn’t capitalize on that opportunity, but capitalized on another two-man advantage which led to goals scored by Derek Schlamp.

Coach Barr alluded to the Cougars’ hard work and no quit attitude for the team pulling within one goal.

Warman put a stop to the Clavet comeback after scoring three unanswered goals to win the game. Jordan Ahenakew, Anderson and Keldon Sanderson were the respective goal scorers.

“We’ve never been a team that would get into the panic mode throughout the season and we didn’t plan start now. We have lots of confident guys on the bench and guys can score goals,” Reimer said.

Clavet entered this playoff series as the seventh seed but the Cougars definitely was up to the task playing competitive games against the second seed Warman Wildcats

“When play against them, it’s a battle, it’s a full-out battle,” Barr said.

Warman is matched up against the Dalmeny Sabres in Round 2 and according to Reimer the Wildcats need to be more disciplined.

“Discipline is a big thing, you can’t continue play shorthanded against skilled teams,” he said. “We just simply need to be able to play playoff hockey and not retaliate and take bad penalties.”

Warman was also in action on February 15 for Game 3 of its Round 1 SHA Senior A Provincial Playoff series against a very strong Meadow Lake team.

“We ended up losing 7 – 2, but the score didn’t really show how close the game actually was,” Reimer said.

Despite being eliminated from the provincial tournament Reimer was impressed with the effort the Wildcats showed.

“I’m very happy with the way we played provincials. I think we opened a lot of eyes the province, and for the Twin Rivers(hockey League) to it’s nice to have a team to compete at that level,” he said.

Derek Schlamp of the Clavet Cougars gets his shot past Warman Wildcats player Chris Gamble
Brayden Anderson of the Warman Wildcats stays a step a head of Clavet Cougars player Jonathan Forreiter