The Fort St. John Huskies had won six in a row in December, feeling invincible, until the Dawson Creek Junior Canucks came to town on Dec. 19 and beat the Huskies 6-3. The loss bumped Fort St. John back down to second place, and left the Huskies to reflect on it for two weeks over the break.
The Huskies learned from that game and used it as motivation to be better in the second half of the season, and on Jan. 5 in their first game back, dominated the Sexsmith Vipers 6-2. The Vipers never stood a chance.
“We had a sour taste in our mouth after the loss to Dawson. All break, guys were texting each other and ready to go, and I was really impressed. We came out booming and I didn’t notice much rust at all,” said Huskies captain Jeridyn Loewen.
The win moved the Huskies back into first place with 35 points, one point ahead of Dawson Creek with two games in hand. Fort St. John has a chance to increase that lead with two home games this weekend: Friday, Jan. 11 against the County of Grande Prairie Kings, and Saturday, Jan. 12 against the North Peace Navigators.
The Huskies are 3-1 this season against the Kings, who are currently in fourth place with 21 points. Against North Peace, the Huskies are 3-2. However, the usually tough Navigators have lost five of their last six games, and are seven points back of the Huskies.
The Huskies know how good they play and the opportunity they have to do something special this year.
“We’re ready to make a run for it. We’re training hard, sticking to good habits, and are ready for another championship run,” Loewen said.
The NWJHL trade deadline is midnight on Jan. 10, and the Huskies are hoping to improve their team anyway they can to finish the regular season strong.
“We’ll try to add to the team here and give ourselves the best opportunity possible,” said coach Todd Alexander.
The game against the Navigators will also be a fundraiser game for the Fort St. John SPCA. The team will have a pin the tail on the Husky game, will sell homemade dog treats, and will donate portions of the gate and 50/50 to the SPCA.
The Huskies special events co-ordinator Sabrina Trobak said the SPCA may have pictures of the animals up for adoption at the game, and possibly some of the animals themselves.
The game starts at 8 p.m., with gates opening at 7 p.m.
Email sports reporter Dillon Giancola at firstname.lastname@example.org.