Reality check gives Lakers good lesson

Reality has set in for our team as we have learned it will take a strong work ethic and 60 minutes of hockey to win games this season in the SIJHL.
After a strong, hard-fought victory in our season-opener versus the defending champion Fort William North Stars, we felt pretty good about ourselves and forgot why we had success through the pre-season and in the first game that really mattered.
We worked hard, didn’t take our opponents for granted, and outplayed them.
In our second and third games (both losses), we didn’t play with this in mind. Dryden and Wisconsin outplayed us for a better part of both games—and were rewarded with wins because of it.
Even in our second win of the season against Wisconsin at home this past Saturday night, it wasn’t until I had to blast the team after the first period that it sunk into their brains that we needed to pick our game up.
 This was not the start I envisioned having as I was hoping to be at least 4-1 going into October.
We have set a new goal and now are hoping to be 6-2 before Oct. 8 when we again meet the North Stars on home ice.
Yes, we are ahead of times from last season. But we have showed that we can be a solid team when we play to our potential, and this is what frustrates me as a coach (and I’m sure you as a fan) to see them under-achieve.
We will battle the Sioux Lookout Flyers in a home-and-home series this weekend before meeting the expansion Duluth Clydesdales on Tuesday, Oct. 5—the night we also will honour our late friend, Bob “Maingy” Mainville.
A pre-game ceremony will highlight the evening. We would like to invite all who knew this great man to come out and join us for the ceremony, then watch our hockey team play that night.
Our work will be cut out for us, but to put together a string of wins will be good for our confidence and sit us well in the standings early on.
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The Lakers would like to thank all those who helped out this past weekend with our fish fry.
I personally would like to thank the players for their help, but many people helped in the way of set-up, organization, food preparation, and many other ways. And without your help and support, this event would not have been a success.
We had a bit over 300 people come through the Couchiching multi-use building or take out food, and your support is much-appreciated.
A big thanks also to the members of Big Grassy First Nation, the Bird family, and Eugene McPherson who provided the fish. It was awesome!
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Goalie Jameson Shortreed is at Canadian Junior ‘A’ Team West tryouts this week. It’s a great honour for this young man, our team, and the SIJHL.
If Jameson is successful in making this team, he will leave for a week in November to represent Team West in the World Junior ‘A’ Challenge.
Two teams from Canada, the U.S., and a few from Europe play in a tournament format.
The Lakers wish Jameson the best of luck in his tryout.
In other news, defenceman Ty Brueggeman has made the choice to leave the team and pursue his schooling. As well, signed defenceman Rylan McKinnon has chosen not to report.
This leaves us with eight defencemen on our roster.
We wish both players the best of luck in their futures.