Dragons find pre­sea­son suc­cess

The Drumheller Mail - - CLASSIFIEDS - Patrick Ko­lafa The Drumheller Mail mailphoto by Terri Hux­ley

While the pre­sea­son sam­ple size is small, it ap­pears that hockey fans in the Val­ley have an ex­cit­ing sea­son ahead watch­ing the Drumheller Dragons.

The team was in Cam­rose for a pre­sea­son tour­na­ment. On Wed­nes­day, Au­gust 30, they played the White­court Wolver­ines and won 7-4. The next day they faced off against the Cam­rose Ko­di­aks and won 8-5, and on Fri­day, they topped the Spruce Grove Saints, 5-3.

For one thing, it ap­pears they have some fire­power.

“Every­body loves to score,” said head coach Kevin Has­sel­berg.” “think in the pre­sea­son we just take the reigns off and let the kids go. I think there are other things we can fo­cus our at­ten­tion on as coaches as far as get­ting our team pre­pared, but when it comes to the of­fense, for sure, you just re­ally have to let the horses run and I think that th­ese guys are thor­ough­breds”.

They showed they could be cre­ative and put the puck in the net, and I think mov­ing for­ward for Drumheller fans, it has got to be ex­cit­ing.”

He said the team also showed a strong kin­ship, es­pe­cially early in the sea­son.

“One of the big­gest things is the lead­er­ship and the ca­ma­raderie in our dress­ing room.

Our guys are al­ready hav­ing fun and do­ing things that typ­i­cally teams at this time of the year would prob­a­bly wouldn’t do be­cause they are fa­mil­iar­iz­ing them­selves with the new coach­ing staff. They are also very fa­mil­iar with each other, although there are some new play­ers in there as well. I just love the ca­ma­raderie, and love the fact when they are at the rink they are hav­ing fun,” said Coach Has­sel­berg.

This is re­flected in their play on the ice.

“It showed through in our per­for­mance. We were down a cou­ple goals on two dif­fer­ent oc­ca­sions, they found a way to col­lect them­selves and climb their way back into the hockey game. I don’t think a team that is up­tight or ner­vous about a sit­u­a­tion would have been able to do that,” said Has­sel­berg.

The pre­sea­son con­tin­ues this Wed­nes­day, Septem­ber 6 when the Dragons host the Olds Griz­zlys for their first home game, a very fa­mil­iar op­po­nent.

“I think as much as we are hav­ing a lot of fun here, and there is ex­cite­ment sur­round­ing a hockey team, I would ven­ture to say there is prob­a­bly a lot of ex­cite­ment with the cul­ture change that is hap­pen­ing in Olds,” he said.

“They are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing the same things and they have had some pre­sea­son suc­cess. So ob­vi­ously they are go­ing to be com­ing into Drumheller with a lot of en­thu­si­asm and en­ergy as well.”

Game time is 7:30 p.m.

The Dragons are in the midst of pre­sea­son play. Af­ter their Or­ange and Black in­trasquad game, above, they were in tour­na­ment play in Cam­rose.

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