It’s onto the next one for the MOB.
The Fort McMurray Oil Barons are off to the divisional finals after last night’s 4-1 win over the Bonnyville Pontiacs.
The Oil Barons lost game one before battling back to win four straight and take the series in five games.
Head Coach Tom Keca tells Mix News that he’s ecstatic with the team’s run so far.
“For us to get to the division finals is a huge accomplishment,” Keca said.
“Considering where we were last year, the strides that we’ve taken – both individually and collectively as a group – I think it’s great and I’m just extremely happy and proud of the players.”
It’s a big step from last year’s squad who finished last season outside of the playoffs and sitting near the bottom of the division with only 10 wins.
Although he’s proud of his squad’s effort so far – Head Coach Tom Keca is hoping the boys can step it up on special teams in the divisional finals.
“When you get an opportunity on the power play, you have to make sure that you generate some offense and from the penalty killing point of view – you have to make sure that you can stop the other team’s momentum.”
Keca says it’s something they’ll have to work on – depending on what’s ahead.
“It’s one thing that we’ll address this week in practice, getting ready. We’re not sure who we’ll play yet but special teams are going to be crucial.”
Keca feels leadership from players like Captain Brandon Ralph – has been a key factor for the Oil Barons improved track record from last year and it will be the key to their success in the long haul.
“To be quite honest, it’s just the leadership that we’ve gotten from our older group,” Keca added.
“Starting with the guys that wear letters for us but really everybody takes a turn leading the group and when you’ve got good leaders you also need good followers, so our young guys have been very receptive to everything that we’ve put out for them this year.”
With Bonnyville in dispose, the MOB can now set its focus on the division finals – and are one series win away from the Gas Drive Cup Finals.
It would be their first AJHL title appearance since winning back in 2006.
They’ll take on either the Spruce Grove Saints or the Whitecourt Wolverines – depending on the outcome of that series.
The Wolverines are currently up 3-2 in that series, with game 6 set for Sunday.