After a slow start to their Heritage Hockey League (HJHL) season, the Cochrane Generals are now just a mere three points back of the first place Okotoks Bisons in the Southern Division standings after a pair of wins on Dec. 8 and 9.
On Dec. 8, the Gens were in Three Hills to take on the Thrashers in a game that was close until the second period. Both teams scored three goals apiece in the first with Cochrane getting tallies from Taylor Girard and Slater Ransom scoring his first and second goals of the evening. Ransom would once again find the back of the net just after the two-minute mark of the second period to make it 4-3
The goal opened the flood gates for the Generals as both Chris Sambrook and Talus Hume added goals before the halfway mark of the second period to make it 6-3. Hume and Jordan Fisher scored early in the third period to give the game its final score of 8-3.
The Generals harassed the Thrashers all night long, piling up 60 shots on the Three Hills goaltender, while Cochrane goaltender Knute Loe was solid in goal, stopping 26 of the 29 shots. Talus Hume and Slater Ransom continued their impressive pace putting up five points in the game. The duo sits first and second in team scoring, with Hume putting up 43 points in 23 games and Ransom garnering 41 points in 20 gam. The next closest player is team captain Austin Keller who has put up 34 points in 22 games.
Hume said he and Ransom have always had good chemistry; things have just been clicking a little bit more between the two in the last few games.
“Slater and I have been playing together for a pretty long time now, dating back to minor midget, so playing with him is basically second nature,” Hume said.
“We expect a lot out of each other and I think having confidence to perform the way we have recently is a large part to our success.”
The Generals followed up their strong play against the Thrashers with a 5-2 victory over the Strathmore Wheatland Kings. The Generals never trailed in the game, after getting two first period goals by Talus Hume and Jarod Domingo, before Strathmore cut the lead to one. Slater Ransom closed out the second period with a power play goal to once again bump up the Gens’ two goal cushion. Hume scored once more and Christian Dees scored his first goal of the season, which sandwiched a Kings goal end the game with a score of 5-2.
Erik Garber grabbed his 12th win of the season, making 28 saves in the contest. Hume once again led the way offensively for the Generals with his two-goal performance, while Colton Wong added a pair of assists.
Cochrane had a strong night offensively putting up 53 shots and going one for five on the power play. The high shot totals have been the Generals calling card, as the team has managed to put 40 plus shots on goal 16 times this season, which is finally being rewarded for all their hard work.
“It was just a matter of opening the flood gates,” Hume said.
“We’re a really confident group right now and I think its part of the reason why we’ve been so successful on offence lately.”
The Generals will return home on Dec. 15 to play the team they’re trying to catch in the standings, as the Okotoks Bisons are in town.
“We need to match their physicality and stay disciplined,” Hume said.
“They’ll try to get under our skin so if we can stay away from their tactic and stick to our game plan that we have in place, we should be able to come out with a big win.”
After Cochrane’s meeting with Okotoks, they will host the High River Flyers the following night. The team will close out the first half of their season on Dec. 22 when they travel to High River to play the Flyers.