If only the puck hadn't hit the post….if only they'd buried a few more of their chances...if only they hadn't run into a hot goalie…if only they hadn't allowed that shorthanded goal…if only…if only…
The Portage College Voyageurs were left with a lot of "what ifs" and "if onlys" Friday night after 6-2 loss to the Concordia Thunder at the Bold Center. Head Coach Nate Bedford's troops put in a stellar effort and had their share of chances but in the end succumbed to their more experienced visitors.
"Our work ethic was good as usual," he said after the game. "Our decision-making was pretty good too. We just have to hit the net more often. We hit the glass a lot tonight."
While the Voyageurs finished 0 for 8 on the powerplay, they had their share of chances to score and looked impressive on more than a couple of their man-advantages.
Portage Player of the Game Kaleb Bell definitely answered the bell for his team, potting two goals including a shorthanded marker to reduce the home squad's deficit to 4-2 in the third period to make things interesting. Seconds later, however, the Thunder struck on the powerplay to seal the deal.
"Concordia scored on their opportunities," said Bedford. "That's what you expect from a well-coached, disciplined and experience hockey team."
Concordia's captain Adam Moghrabi, playing perhaps his last ACAC game in his hometown of Lac La Biche, notched an assist and was named Player of the Game for the Thunder.
Next up for the Voyageurs is a return engagement with Concordia in Edmonton on Saturday, followed by a home and home with NAIT next weekend. Bedford hopes his players keep their spirits up and focus on the positives from the contest.
"We played well," he said. "We just need to simplify our game and hit the net more often. That's what you need to do when you're a younger and more inexperienced team."