The Calgary Oval X-treme opened their season in fine form this past weekend with a pair of victories over their Alberta rivals the Edmonton Chimos Oct. 20 and 21. The X-Treme showed their trademark high-powered offence by winning both games by at least five goal margins with 5-0 and 8-3 victories.
The season opener on Sat. night saw the X-Treme raise their 2006-07 Western Women's Hockey League championship banner. However, the Edmonton Chimos were looking to take the defending league champs down a peg.
The X-Treme led 2-0 after the end of the first period from goals by Megan Walton and Haley Wickenheiser.
The second period saw defenceman Samantha Watt launch a rocket at Chimo goalie Keely Brown which put the X-Treme up 3-0.
In the third period, the X-Treme put the game out of reach. Wickenheiser scored on a deflection while Walton made her second goal of the game on a two-on-one pass from Wickenheiser. In all, the Wickenheiser, Bechard, and Walton line combined for four goals and 11 assists.
"We played well, I mean, in terms of our puck possession and we were really strong," said X-Treme head coach Mario Amantea of the game.
The Chimos managed to keep things closer during the Sun. afternoon game. The score was 3-2 early in the third period but the Chimos defensive play suffered some severe breakdowns which allowed the X-Treme to put the game out of reach.
Stephanie Ramsey scored on partial breakaway which made the score 6-2 for the X-Treme after the Chimos caught it up at their own blueline trying to break out of their zone. Delaney Collins scored her second of the game on rocket from the point bring the score to 7-2. Megan Corbett added an insurance goal with just under 3 minutes to play.
After dominating the WWHL last season and decisively beating the Chimos, complacency is something that the X-Treme are constantly fighting and something that the coaching staff is determined not to let set into their players.
"We can't [be complacent] if we want to continue being at the top," said Amantea. "That's why we train as hard as we do and that's why we play against AAA midget boys teams and different boys teams because that forces us to play at that higher level. So that's what we need to continue doing, to be pushing ourselves to be better. The great thing about it as a coach is you have players in that room that know and understand that."