Red Deer – While it wasn't the result that the Red Deer College Queens wanted in their home opening game against the NAIT Ooks, there were several lessons that the RDC team can take forward. After a scoreless first period, the Ooks scored three goals in the second period and added a pair in the final frame for a 5 - 0 win.
The Queens penalty killers were put to the test in the first period but with a strong forecheck and key saves from Karlee Fetch, the game remained scoreless.
The NAIT Ooks jumped on some turnovers and opportunities in the second period to take a lead. Verca Kuzelova, Rebecca Roszell, Jordan McMillan gave the Ooks a 3 – 0 edge after 40 minutes.
In the third period, Rebecca Roszell added her second goal of the game and Julia Wing rounded out NAIT's scoring for a 5- 0 road win.
Queens Head Coach Kelly Coulter will use the game as a learning opportunity. "We made a lot of mistakes on the ice and NAIT capitalized on them. There are a lot of lessons to be learned in tonight's game," he says. "Whether it's the home opener or game six of the season, it doesn't matter. If you make turnovers and mistakes, other teams will capitalize and that's what they did tonight. We have to learn the lessons to be more sharp and focused on what we're doing on the ice."
Keinyn Nordell was named the Queens Player-of-the-Game. The fifth-year forward from Edam, Saskatchewan had a strong work ethic and was effective applying pressure while a skater short. "Keinyn gives you an honest effort every night. She skates hard and competes hard on pucks," says Coulter. "She's done that her whole career here with us. Keinyn's a very good penalty killer and a good role model for the younger players about how to prepare, and how to compete every night. She's one that we know that will give us a solid effort every night."
As the Queens adjust to their home ice, they plan to work on their offensive game. "The big thing is that we have to get more comfortable playing on this ice and how we can generate offence and get going through the neutral zone," says Coulter. "I thought that we did a good job regrouping but we are not generating enough speed through the neutral zone and getting to the net. We want to just focus on small things that we think are the keys to success."
While the Queens wish that they could hit the ice to play their third game sooner, they will enter a bye week. "I'd like to be playing next week because it seems like we waited a long time to play and then we go into a break, but that's what happens with a five team league, and you'll get your bye," says Coulter. "It's only game two and I'm looking forward to game three coming up. There are a lot of lessons to learn, and that is coaching."
In Olds, the RDC Queens (1 - 1) will face the Olds College Broncos (0 - 0) on Thursday, October 18 at 7:00 p.m.