It’s been a strong start for Red Deer’s newest hockey team – the Red Deer Senior AA Rustlers.
Coming off back-to-back wins against the Devon Oil Barons, the team is up against the Sylvan Lake Pirates Saturday night at the Penhold Multiplex.
General Manager Ted Emmett said he can’t ask for more from a new team.
“They had to come back from playing from behind twice and they found a way to win,” Emmett said of the first two games in the season. “I think the biggest thing the players will agree with is these guys are having fun playing hockey again and really care about playing hockey again. I think that is starting to show in their play.”
The Rustlers are one of three new teams in the North Central Senior Hockey League playing in the 2018-2019 NCHL Senior AA campaign. They will play a 16-game season.
While this hockey team is new, the name, Rustlers, will be familiar to some. The Jr. A Rustlers were an amateur team from Red Deer that played from 1967 until 1989. The team had several division titles to their name.
The home opener on Oct. 13th was a great game to watch, Emmett said, with more than 400 spectators coming out. The team won 3-1.
“We’ve had a lot of support from the community leading up to the first game since the team was created,” he said. “To see not a single empty seat, it’s pretty cool.”
He added, “Devon came out hard and scored the first goal, their goalie played fantastically and then things started to go the Rustlers’ way. They just kept going and kept grinding and found a way to put a few in the net and then held on once again.”
The Rustlers won 5-4 against the Devon Oil Barons on Oct. 6th.
“Devon came out pretty hard, they scored the first two goals,” he said. “The guys caught up with the physical play and pulled one out and held on from there.”
For Saturday’s game, doors open at 7 p.m. at the Penhold Multiplex with the puck drop at 7:30 p.m.