Innisfail has its own miracle on ice

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INNISFAIL -The Innisfail Bantam B Sticky’s Flyers are on top of the world and their game.

The team recently took their league championship in a dramatic comeback fashion in a triple overtime gold medal that highlighted the local team’s grit, determination and hard work.

“It was a miracle. We were holding our breath and then cheering, then holding our breath and praying,” said Lindy Jensen, tournament coordinator. “It was a nail-biter.

“It was something I’ve never experienced in the 10 years I’ve been a hockey mom.”

That exciting overtime victory came on March 7 on the road when they faced the Lacombe Rockets in the finals.

“We couldn’t beat this team all season,” she said. “We won (the gold medal) 4-3 after three periods of overtime.”

Innisfail’s goalie came up with two big saves in that third overtime period.

“It was only by the grace of God and our goalie (making those saves) did we have a chance to get back to the other end and score the winner,” said Jensen. “The entire game was intense.”

The Lacombe Rockets proved to be a tough team to beat.

The game was tied at one going in to the third period, noted Jensen, adding Lacombe then scored quick goals to take a 3-1 lead in the final frame.

But the game was not over yet.

“With 1:27 left they got a penalty so we pulled our goalie and it was six on four,” said Jensen. “We got a quick goal and then with 18 seconds left on the clock we tied the game,” she added, noting Jaden Bowe scored the game-winner in triple overtime.

“There were two minutes left in the third overtime when the puck finally crossed the (goal) line.

“They were extremely proud. Their emotions took over,” Jensen added.

Steven Bates coached the Innisfail Bantam B Sticky’s Flyers, a Tier 6 team this season.

The team plays in the Central Alberta Hockey League (CAHL) and finished the regular season in first place in their division.

“They had to learn how to be a team (this season). They found their lines and they found their groove,” said Jensen. “It was an amazing team.”

Lindy Jensen, tournament coordinator

“It was a miracle. We were holding our breath and then cheering, then holding our breath and praying.”

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Kristine Jean

Kristine Jean is a reporter with the Innisfail Province, joining the newspaper in 2013. She covers Penhold municipal politics, news and community events as well as sports in and around the town as well as in Innisfail.