Calgary, Alta – Oct.28 – Coming off a pair of strong performances against the Shenzhen KRS Vanke Rays last weekend, the Calgary Inferno remained red hot out east this weekend with a couple of impressive victories against the Worcester Blades. The Inferno defense remained perfect all weekend, not allowing a single goal in either game. Meanwhile, the offense found the back of the net five times in the opening game and exploded for nine goals in Sunday’s rematch.
In Saturday’s contest, both teams took awhile to get going as evidenced with a scoreless first period. The Inferno’s Kelty Apperson finally broke the deadlock nearly seven minutes into the second with an assist going to Brigette Lacquette. Calgary extended the lead in the middle frame as both Kacey Bellamy and Blayre Turnbull each registered their first goals of the season. Worcester Blades’s Kaitlyn Spurling attempted to score with a break-away opportunity, but was shut down by Annie Belanger, keeping the score 2-0, in favour of the Inferno. The talented playmaker Zoe Hickel would collect her 7th assist on the year on the Bellamy marker. The Inferno put the game to bed in the third as Finnish Olympian Venla Hovi lit the lamp just one minute in with the helper coming from Lacquette. Just three minutes later, Lacquette completed a brilliant three-point performance adding a goal of her own. The remainder of the game remained uneventful with Fujimagari maintaining her composure and stopping 42 of 47 shots. Annie Belanger made her first ever CWHL start and turned aside 17 shots for her first career win and shutout. The final score was 5-0 in favour of the Inferno.
The Inferno did not skip a beat and in fact, found another gear in Sunday’s 9-0 thumping of the Blades. Brianna Decker got the party started with a powerplay goal late in the first, as the assists went to Rebecca Johnston and Kacey Bellamy. Just a minute later, Apperson found the goal column in consecutive games as Katelyn Gosling set her up. The floodgates opened at the start of the second period as Turnbull, Eden Murray and Rebecca Leslie all beat Blades goaltender Lauren Dahm within a span of four minutes. Johnston would add a goal late in the second to the Inferno a 6-goal advantage. The final period saw a trio of goals from three other members of the Inferno as Dakota Woodworth, Brianne Jenner and defender Halli Krzyzaniak also found the score sheet. Belanger drew the start once again and made 23 saves en route to her second straight shutout.
With a combined 14 goals in two games and zero goals allowed, the entire Inferno roster was clicking. “We played a very solid team game this weekend. We executed the systems and style of play that we want to be doing all year – so it was fun hockey to play for that reason,” expressed Kelty Apperson, who scored in both games. “We did the little things right, which gave us success in these two games.”
The majority of the Inferno will now enjoy an extended break, while a few members will be off to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan to participate in the 4-Nations Cup from November 6-10. Calgary will not be back in action until the weekend of November 17-18 as they head out east once again for a two-game series against the Toronto Furies. Both games will take place at the MasterCard Center.