Grizzly Bantam A hockey opens season with title at Aspen Fall Face Off Tournament
Opening up the 2016 hockey season at the Aspen Fall Face Off Tournament, the Glenwood Grizzlies’ Bantam A team rolled through the tournament by outscoring its opponents 26-4, including a 5-0 win over the YMCA Bantam A Jr. Buffs on Sunday to wrap up the tournament championship.
The Glenwood Bantam A team had just six returning players from last season and had Braeden Carmichael and Daelen Renzi join the team from Grand Junction this season. The Grizzlies also used a 20-man roster, with many of last season’s Bantam B & Pee Wee A players included in the mix. The group played strong all weekend and really took control of teams in the tournament.
“What a strong showing by our Grizzly players at the 2016 Fall Face Off,” Grizzly Director or Hockey TK Kwiatkowski said. “With only two practices in Eagle prior to this event, we did not know where we would stack up against the competition, which varied from local and regional teams, to Denver and Colorado Springs and even teams from outside the state. This tournament solidifies the level our Grizzly players can compete at, and we are looking forward to much success from our 14U Bantam group this season.”
In game one of the tournament, Glenwood rolled to an 8-1 win over NCYA Bantam A on Friday as the Grizzlies raced out to a 5-0 lead early in the second period.
The Grizzlies received goals from Luke Grimaldi, Max Mencimer, Carmichael and Kelton McPherson in the first period before Carmichael found the back of the net early in the second period for the 5-0 lead.
Following an NCYA goal, Hunter Lohse found the back of the net and Mencimer scored two goals in the final period to cap off the 8-1 win while recording his first hat trick of the season.
Looking to keep the good fortune going in game two, the Grizzlies again picked up a big win as Carmichael found the back of the net twice in the third period off of assists from Anthony Guy and Colter Strautman before Sean Mooney and Kelton McPherson netted a goal each to cap off the 4-0 win.
In game three Glenwood topped the COS Tigers 6-2 as Mencimer and Strautman scored two goals each to pace the Grizzlies, while Mooney and Robbie Weir added one goal each. Renzi stopped eight of 10 shots faced in the win.
After a 3-1 win over the BHC Bantam A Green team, the Grizzlies moved on to the championship game against the YMCA Bantam A Jr. Buffs team on Sunday.
Against the Jr. Buffs, Grimaldi started the scoring early in the first period with an even-strength goal to give the Grizzlies a 1-0 lead after one period of play. Mooney and Jacob Fowler then added two goals in the second period off of assists from Strautman, Carmichael and Tysen Trujillo to give Glenwood a 3-0 lead heading into the final period.
In the final period with the tournament title within reach, the Grizzlies received goals from Owen Mangeot and Carmichael to seal the win as Renzi stopped six of six shots to backstop the Grizzlies.
“The boys showed our depth at this age level by winning an A division with an open roster and 19 players seeing the ice in the final game,” Glenwood Bantam A coach Adam McPherson said. “This should be an exciting season.”
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It was a close game, but after some thrilling back-and-forth plays the Rifle Bears were able to pull off the 28-20 victory over The Academy on May 1.