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Rangers’ win streak reaches six games to open season


The Parkland Rangers learned the hard way that they cannot take a night off.
The Rangers extended their season-opening winning streak to six games with a 3-2 win over the Southwest Cougars, last Wednesday in Souris, then beat the Cougars, 4-2 on home ice, Friday in Dauphin.
But the Rangers received a wake up call courtesy of the Cougars on Saturday when they suffered their first loss of the season, 6-2, in Souris.
Rangers co-coach Tyler Carefoot said it took a while for the Rangers to get used to the large ice surface in Souris.
“They have Olympic size ice, so it took us a period to adjust to that style of game. It’s more about containment than actually going out and being physical and using your body positioning,” he said.
“Once we realize how we were going to do that, our second and third periods were much better and we were able to find the two points.”
Carefoot felt the Rangers put in a full 60-minute effort in Friday’s victory.
“From puck drop, I thought we were in control from start to finish,” he said.
“Our group put up together pretty much 60-minutes of play. It would be the first time we’ve done that all season, so there was lots to like in our second game.”
Saturday, the Rangers were simply not prepared, so much so that before the game Carefoot told co-coach Rick Freese, “this isn’t going to be good.”
Carefoot said players were singing and dancing and were thinking about anything else, but hockey.
“It was a lesson. And it was a good lesson. It was a lesson that this group needed. Being prepared and being ready to play is just as important as executing your assignments and details in a game. So I think that’s a lesson the guys can learn from and, hopefully, we can grow and carry on with the season,” he said.
The Rangers will look to right the ship, this weekend with three straight games against the Norman North Stars.
Friday’s game in Swan River is the rescheduled contest from Oct. 17 in Thompson and will be a Norman home game.
The two teams will then head to Dauphin for games Saturday at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 1:30 p.m.
“We’re getting to a busy stretch of our season, which is exciting. I’m still hopeful that we’re going to be able to play all these games given the circumstances around the province,” Carefoot said.
“I think the more games we have, the guys are into it and we’re feeling the mojo. Hopefully, we can build off this loss and keep the momentum in our favour and find a way to secure every point that we can. because every point is very valuable.”

Doug Zywina