If the Rimbey Rock were looking to add some much-needed offense to their game, they found it last week at the expense of the lowly Ponoka Stampeders who they crushed by a score of 15-5.
Leading the way for the Rock were Justin Lewis who chipped in with three goals and two assists for a five point night, Cody Lewis who added two more goals and an assist while Davin Waisanen, Cody Lewis, Cole Reis, Blaine Teeuwsen and Bowen Fraser picked up three points each.
According to Head Coach Lloyd Cox, the offensive explosion put forth by the Rock was a welcomed site, even if it came near the end of the season. He also commented on the effort of some of his players, especially the younger ones and those expected to lead them.
“Some of the players are starting to realize that they have the skill and grit to play in this league and really excel. Unfortunately it has taken 29 games. Justin (Lawson) is one of the young players that could really make an impact with his skill, but again he has to bring it every game, Cody (Lewis) has been used on the point and at centre and he has to lead by example for the younger players and realize he can’t do it from the penalty box,” said Cox who as also assumed some general manager duties following the departure of Greg Conway.
“The line of Lawson, Foley, and Waisanen played very well and had 13 points between them, and Abbott, Lewis and Sibbet fore-checked extremely well,” he said. “We have a new goaltender – Andy Williams, and he’s played in four games so far this season and we’re hoping that he’ll help bring down the goals against, but it’s going to take a team effort.”
Despite the offensive output, Cox said the pummeling of the Stampders wasn’t, in his opinion, the best game played thus far this season even though the Rock blew open a close game with nine goals in the third period. Instead, Cox pointed to a Nov. 12 tilt against the Banff Academy Bears that saw the Rock win 9-3.
Now that the regular season is winding down and the playoffs are right around the corner, he said things wont be getting easier as the team will face one of the elites in their division.
“The playoffs are going to extremely tough as we will be up against the second best team in the North Division, but the players have to play with confidence and knowing that they have the ability to compete and beat the top teams,” Cox said.
Following last Friday night’s home game against the Cochrane Generals, the Rock have just six games left in the regular season and one more home game against the Red Deer Vipers on Friday, Feb. 13. They’ll also get another crack at the Stampeders when they visit Ponoka on Wednesday, Feb. 11.