The dogfight for top spot in the AJHL’s North Division continues with no letup in sight as the two top‐ranked teams in the country, the Fort McMurray Oil Barons and Spruce Grove Saints, battle hard every night. The Brooks Bandits slide back into the Top 20 this week and, on the back of a terrific road trip, the Drumheller Dragons earn an Honourable Mention.
In the BCHL, the Powell River Kings faced some tough competition this week and the Victoria Grizzlies continued to roll; staying close to their Island Division rivals on the Sunshine Coast.
In the SJHL, the Yorkton Terriers continue to have a strong grip on top spot, while the Humboldt Broncos, the Melville Millionaires, the Kindersley Klippers, and the Battlefords North Stars are finding their games. The balance of the season should prove to be very entertaining in Saskatchewan.
The Steinbach Pistons had a great week in the MJHL, while the Portage Terriers continue to struggle recently. The Selkirk Steelers remain steadfast in their chase of the top spot in the MJHL standings, with several games in hand.
The Fort Frances Lakers and Thunder Bay North Stars are creating nice space between themselves and everyone else in the SIJHL. In the NOJHL, the Soo Thunderbirds remain in first place overall and won both of their games this past week. The Kirkland Lake Gold Miners, just four points back of the Soo with three games in hand, won their only game of the week.
The Toronto Lakeshore Patriots of the OJHL had a tremendous week and have jumped up in the Top 20 Rankings, while the Whitby Fury and Kingston Voyageurs are both heating up and playing well. In the CCHL, the Carleton Place Canadiens own a commanding lead in the overall standings, and the Pembroke Lumber Kings are creating some space from the Smiths Falls Bears, Ottawa Jr. ‘A’ Senators and the Nepean Raiders.
Les Titans de Princeville have jumped up to top spot in the LHJAAAQ, but face some stiff competition from Les Pantheres de Saint Jerome and the Granby Inouk. The Weeks Crushers and Dieppe Commandoes have stayed atop the MHL, but are being chased by the Truro Bearcats and the Yarmouth Jr. ‘A’ Mariners.
Top 20 Rankings
1. Fort McMurray Oil Barons (AJHL) (1)
2. Spruce Grove Saints (AJHL) (2)
3. Carleton Place Canadiens (CCHL) (3)
4. Fort Frances Lakers (SIJHL) (4)
5. Soo Thunderbirds (NOHL) (5)
6. Steinbach Pistons (MJHL) (7)
7. Powell River Kings (BCHL) (6)
8. Yorkton Terriers (SJHL) (8)
9. Toronto Lakeshore Patriots (OJHL) (11)
10. Weeks Crushers (MHL) (10)
11. Pembroke Lumber Kings (CCHL) (13)
12. Selkirk Steelers (MJHL) (12)
13. Portage Terriers (MJHL) (9)
14. Kirkland Lake Gold Miners (NOJHL) (14)
15. Thunder Bay North Stars (SIJHL) (15)
16. Coburg Cougars (OJHL) (HM)
17. Victoria Grizzlies (BCHL) (19)
18. Brooks Bandits (AJHL) (HM)
19. Dieppe Commandos (MHL) (18)
20. Les Titans de Princeville (LHJAAAQ) (NR)
Honourable Mention: Penticton Vees (BCHL), Drumheller Dragons (AJHL), Humboldt Broncos (SJHL), Kingston Voyageurs (OJHL), Whitby Fury (OJHL)
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)
February 22 postgame quotes: Mike Stothers
26 minutes ago