Craig hockey ‘leafs’ it all on the ice vs. Aspen | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig hockey ‘leafs’ it all on the ice vs. Aspen

Craig Cougar Alexander Barber is on the attack against Aspen during the Bantam team's Saturday game with the Leafs at Loudy-Simpson Park Ice Arena. The group was 1-2 during weekend games with Aspen, losing, 7-2, Saturday leading to a 3-1 loss and a 5-3 victory on Sunday.

The teams of Craig Youth Hockey Association hit hard against opposition from Aspen this weekend, seeing some good results, the Bantam, Peewee and Squirt teams each hosting the Leafs, while the Midgets were on the road.

Aspen was prepared for the Midget Bulldog team, taking them down, 10-0, on Saturday. The squad looked ready to start something the next day, with an early goal by Garrett Ferguson a positive point, but Aspen answered back with goals across the first and second periods to end it, 5-1, and give Craig a record of 0-10.

Saturday also was rough on the Bantam-level Cougars, 6-4-4-1 who ran into trouble in the third period, allowing four goals of the Leafs' 7-2 win. Tristan Farquharson, who put in a pair in the first match, scored the lone goal of a 3-1 Sunday loss, but the weekend ended well, as the Cougars went on to win their last game, 5-3, with goals from Alexander Barber, Wyatt Boatright and Dakota Kenyon.

The 0-13-1 Peewees battled their own doubleheader Saturday, falling 3-0 and 8-0 to Aspen. Cougar goaltender Jack Doane had 49 saves during the two matches, in which the Leafs outshot Craig, 60-23.

The Squirts split their Sunday games. A 3-1 defeat by the Leafs in the first game led to the Cougars coming roaring back to win, 10-1, in their best game of the season.

"Last year, Aspen beat us 20 to nothing, so it was great to see that," said Squirts coach Greg Neal.

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Kale Beckett managed his fourth hat trick of the season with four goals, and Chayton McDonald also accomplished the feat for the first time with three of his own. Baryn Suessmeier came close with two, while Hunter Snow scored one goal in each of the pair of games.

The season will continue this weekend as the Peewees travel to Fraser, the Midgets host West Elk and the Squirts meet Glenwood Springs.

Additionally, the Mighty Mite Jamboree will take place this Saturday, bright and early at the Loudy-Simpson Park Ice Arena. The program for kids ages 8 and younger teaches skills without worrying about the score, and groups from Craig will be among the six teams playing two games at a time on the ice.

Neal oversees the Mites with James Neton and already has noticed a lot of talent ready to move up into the older age groups.

"We've got some really strong players this year," he said.

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.

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