By Sara Moulton
The Fernie Ghostriders continued their winning streak this week, with another round of back-to-back victories on Friday, November 1 and Saturday, November 2. The 4-1 result against the Golden Rockets on Saturday was the fourth win in a row for the Riders, allowing them to climb to second place on their division ladder.
Saturday’s game at the Fernie Memorial Arena began slowly, until Kale Johnston (assisted by Joel Burgess and Dylan Robertson) scored the first goal of the night with less than two minutes remaining in the first period. The second period saw much more energy from both sides, although the 507-strong crowd was again kept waiting until late in the period for another goal, this time by Burgess from Robertson. The Rockets finally scored their first and only goal for the game in the final seconds of the second period.
The home side continued to dominate the puck throughout the third period and were able to secure two more goals before the final siren. The ever-consistent Cole Keebler (assisted by Aaron Neufeld and Travis Thomsen) delivered a great shot in the final minutes of the game, before Neufeld (assisted by Keebler and Kurtis Bond) took advantage of an empty net and finalized the score in the Ghostriders’ favour.
The efforts of Neufeld are a great example of the development capacity of the club. As an assistant captain in his second year on the team, Neufeld has scored five goals and made 14 assists this season, placing him in top spot on the team for points. Just 16 games into the current season, he has already exceeded his total points from last year.
“This season, I’m in more of a leadership role and I’m getting a lot more ice time,” Neufeld explains. “I think that’s why I’ve been doing better this year.”
Neufeld was quick to praise the leadership of team captain, Ben Primeau, and has been focusing on helping his younger teammates to develop their skills.
“There’s a lot of rookies on the team right now, so I’m just trying to help out with their development. They’re a great group of guys,” he said.
With the Ghostriders well and truly back on track for a successful season, it was the club president, Barb Anderson, who neatly summed up the strength of the team.
“Every single team that we play against had better be on their guard… you never know who’s going to be deadly on that particular night!”
The Ghostriders will play the Grand Forks Border Bruins on Friday, November 8 and the Kamloops Storm on Sunday, November 10 at the Fernie Memorial Arena. Puck drops at 7:30 pm both nights.