Streaking AA Warriors

Katie Brickman
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Midget Tier 1 team sitting in first place

The Moose Jaw Midget Tier 1 AA Warriors couldn’t be any happier with the first half of the season.

Moose Jaw Bantam AA Warriors

By Katie Brickman

They currently sit in first place in the South Saskatchewan Minor Hockey League and are riding a four game winning streak.

“The first half has been where we want to be right now,” said Darren Martens, head coach of the Warriors. “It just worked out that we are No. 1 right now and it is nice to go into holidays in that spot.”

The Warriors closed out the first half of the season with a 7-3 victory over Prairie Storm on Thursday evening. Going out on a win was the best thing for the team.

“It is actually perfect timing for us to have a break right now,” said Martens. “We have played a lot of hockey, so we do need a little time to get away from the rink and just focus on family and have fun with friends.”

The Warriors have a record of 14-2-5 on the season with 33 points, sole position of first place with the Regina Capitals trailing by five points.

“The biggest thing is that they are coming together as a team, the chemistry is there and everyone is playing for each other. When you do that, good things happen,” said Martens. “They are buying into the system and giving 100 per cent effort every night.”

The team is strong offensively, as almost everyone has registered a point on the team, but the team is also good defensively, only allowing 58 goals this season.

“With Bhody (Magnusson) coming down from the Generals, that really helped add to our scoring punch as well,” said Martens. “Our d-zone is fairly strong. It is not the way I want it every night, but it is getting better as the year goes on.”

The Warriors also have good goaltending, as Thomas Spence is fourth overall in the league with a goals against average (GAA) of 2.33 and Jory Litt-Jukes has a GAA of 3.38 in his eight games this season.

“Both of our goaltenders are great. You don’t usually get two goaltenders that are pretty much equal,” said Martens. “It doesn’t really matter who plays, we are confident with either one. It is a nice feeling to have going into any game.”

The team was recently at a tournament in Banff, where they lost one game. However, with the strange points format, the team didn’t move on to the final game.

“We did really well. It was a good time to gel and bound,” said Martens.

The Warriors will now take a break during the Christmas holidays and return to the rink in January. Their first game back is Jan. 16 (7 p.m., Bert Hunt Arena) against the second-placed Regina Capitals.

Follow me on Twitter @katiebrickman.

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