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Matthew Savoie coverage at the U17 worlds headlines Rinkside Report
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RISING STAR – Matthew Savoie of St. Albert recorded one goal and five assists in six games with Canada White as an underage player at the World U17 Hockey Challenge. Savoie, 15, was the No. 1 selection in the Western Hockey League bantam draft by the Winnipeg ICE and is playing for the Winnipeg-based Rink Hockey Academy's prep team in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League. SASHA SEFTER/Winnipeg Free Press

Savoie shines

St. Albert centre Matthew Savoie finished the World U17 Hockey Challenge with six points in six games as an underage player.

Savoie’s first goal of the tournament with Canada White tied Saturday’s bronze medal match at two on a power play with 2:22 remaining in regulation time against the Czech Republic in Medicine Hat.

The Czechs went on to score the 3-2 winner with 14.4 seconds left overtime.

Savoie, 15, was one of 66 players chosen to represent Canada on three teams at the U17 worlds. They were among 112 invitees at the national U17 development camp in July as part of the first step in Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence.

The top scorer at the U17 worlds was Chaz Lucius, 16, of the United States with seven goals and 10 points in six games for the silver medallists.

Shane Wright, 15, and Zach Dean, 16, of Canada Black were the highest-scoring Canadians in the tournament. Wright (4-3-7 in five games) plays for the Kingston Frontenacs of the Ontario Hockey League after he was granted early status in the 2019 Ontario Hockey League draft and Dean (3-4-7 in five games) is with the Gatineau Olympiques of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

Savoie and Wright are projected to be among the top picks in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft.

Savoie was the No. 1 selection in the 2019 Western Hockey League bantam draft by the Winnipeg ICE and as an affiliate this season recorded one assist in five games with the relocated Kootenay franchise from Cranbrook, B.C.

Savoie is playing for the Winnipeg-based Rink Hockey Academy of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League and in seven games compiled seven goals and 20 points with the prep team.

Last season with the Northern Alberta Xtreme’s midget prep team in the CSSHL, Savoie produced 31 goals and 71 points in 31 games and was named the most valuable player in the midget prep division playing one year above his age group.

Savoie also posted six goals and 13 points in six games with U16 Team Alberta at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer.

The last St. Albert minor hockey team for the former Richard S. Fowler student was the 2016/17 bantam AAA Gregg Distributors Sabres as a second-year peewee.

Slash power

A shorthand St. Albert Slash squad continued to pile up the wins in the Alberta Female Hockey League

Victories of 3-1 against the Edmonton Pandas in St. Albert and 2-1 against the Rocky Mountain Raiders in Dewinton last weekend made it four in a row by the Slash (11-0) without five players with Team Alberta at the U18 nationals.

Jaidia Pisani’s power-play marker broke a 1-1 deadlock in the third period against the Pandas and captain Alli Reich’s second goal of the night was deposited into an empty net.

Mabel Maltais faced 14 shots while the Slash were credited with 23.

Maltais (6-0, 1.15 GAA) also stopped 24 pucks as the Raiders (3-5-3) broke her shutout bid with 14 seconds remaining.

Kelsey Hall and Cassidy Rhodes scored as the Slash finished with 27 shots.

The next game for three-time defending Esso Cup midget AAA national champions is Saturday against the Calgary Fire (6-4) at 11:45 a.m. at Father David Bauer Arena.

Returning to the Slash lineup are netminder Holly Borrett, defenceman Dayle Ross and forwards’ Jaden Bogden, Natalie Kieser and Brooklyn Schroeder after Alberta finished sixth at the U18 nationals in Morden and Winkler, Man.

Bogden led Alberta (1-3) in scoring with three goals and four points and Schroeder, an assistant captain, tallied once.

Raiders rebound

The St. Albert Nektar Raiders put the season’s only loss behind them in Sunday’s 2-1 road win against the Grande Peace Storm.

The Raiders (9-1-2) and Storm (8-3) are the top north division teams in the Alberta Midget AAA Hockey League.

Mathieu Gautier’s second goal of the game made it 2-0 on the power play with 7:30 to play.

Shots were 29-27 for the Storm with Carson Ironside (4-0-1, 1.40 GAA) in net for the AMHL’s top defensive team ((1.41 GAA).

The result was also the sixth one-goal game for the Raiders, including the 2-1 loss to the Sherwood Park Kings (4-4-3) last Wednesday in St. Albert.

Upcoming for the Raiders is the Canadian Athletic Club (4-6-2) Saturday at 8 p.m. at Jarome Iginla Arena.

Midget AA results

The St. Albert Steel fell from the undefeated ranks in the Northern Alberta Midget AA Hockey League with a pair of losses against division opponents last weekend.

The winners of seven straight lost 3-2 to the Sherwood Park Oilers despite outshooting the visitors 42-33 in St. Albert and 2-0 to the host Leduc Roughnecks.

The score was knotted at two with Sean Mitchell and Joshua Cyr netting goals when the Oilers (7-3-1) struck on the power play with 7:51 left in the middle frame.

Ethan Kadatz (3-1, 2.26 GAA) was between the pipes and Liam Bell (4-1, 2.40 GAA) drew the start against Leduc (3-7). Shot totals were not listed on the game sheet.

The Steel (7-2) are back in action Saturday against the Sturgeon Sting (5-6-1) at 2:45 p.m. at Morinville Leisure Centre and Sunday against the Peace River Royals (7-4) at 1:45 p.m. at Jarome Iginla Arena.

Meanwhile, Saturday’s game between the Source for Sports Crusaders (8-0-1) and Lloydminster Blazers (3-5) in St. Albert was postponed because of travel conditions.

The next game for the Playoff Cup champions the last two years is Tuesday versus the Oilers at 8:30 p.m. at Mark Messier Arena.

Flyers game

Saturday’s home contest for the St. Albert Flyers against the CNHA Blazers starts at 5:30 p.m. at Jarome Iginla Arena.

The midget 15 Flyers (5-4-4) are tied for fifth in the north standings and the Blazers (2-8-1) share the basement in the south division.

The Flyers are 2-4-2 in the last eight games after Sunday’s 3-1 road loss to the Red Deer Chiefs (7-2-2) of the north division.

Dylan Stevenson connected on the power play in the last minute of the third period.

Shots were 34-29 for the Chiefs and Damon Cunningham (3-4-3, 4.13 GAA) was in net.

Jeff Hansen

About the Author: Jeff Hansen

Jeff Hansen joined the St. Albert Gazette in 1991. He writes about sports, athletes and teams from St. Albert and area.
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