Craig The Craig Bulldogs Midget hockey team lost a trio of home games during the weekend but showed marked improvement to its coach in the process.
The Bulldogs hosted the Crested Butte Wolfpack for three games Saturday and Sunday, getting shut out on the weekend while losing 7-0, 6-0 and 8-0. The Wolfpack dominated the matchups, but Craig showed it is getting stronger on the ice against its highly skilled opponents.
“Overall, the team is significantly better than the beginning of the season,” said head coach Todd Bellio. “They’re pursuing the puck better and skating hard. I love they way they’re playing, I just wish the scoreboard would show it.”
Craig is now 0-13-1 on the season, with its tie coming a week ago at Arvada. Most of the rest of the team’s results have been lopsided, but even the players say there is a major difference with the team since the beginning of the season.
“We played good today, but at times we just stopped, and that’s when they scored,” Garrett Ferguson said. “When we did what we wanted to, it looked good.”
Still, the Bulldogs would like to get on the scoreboard more often. Their scoring chances have been few and far between for much of the season, and that was the case again against Crested Butte: Craig’s highest number of shots on goal was 12.
Ferguson also said the Bulldogs need to do more when they have those opportunities.
“We can’t shoot straight at the goalie,” he said. “Every shot we had was just right at him, and we need to use our points more. Our points are standing their open, but we aren’t getting it to them.”
The Bulldogs’ schedule doesn’t get any easier coming up. They will play the league-leading teams from Arapahoe and Littleton next weekend and be up against some talented year-round hockey teams. But Bellio still is encouraged by what he’s seen.
“Part of the problem for us is we’re so outclassed by some of these teams, that we end up having to spend a lot of time in the defensive zone,” he said. “But I’m proud of them, I think they’re playing great. This game was very promising.”
Contact Nate Waggenspack at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@CraigDailyPress.com.