We are just days away from the 2019 Allan Cup, which promises to bring the eyes of 1,000s of hockey fans to the community of Lacombe to watch the best senior-level hockey Canada has to offer.
Along with the added attention, the Lacombe Generals have the opportunity to do something special: Win the Allan Cup for the fourth time — this time on home ice in a city that has fully embraced them as their home-town heroes.
The Generals head into the tournament on a typical hot streak, once again winning the league and provincial championships, but this year — for once — it didn’t always look like ‘The Army’ was going to march their way to an earned spot in the Cup.
Starting off the year, the Gens were plagued by small benches, which meant they were often relying on their top forward line and top d-pairing to keep them in games. At one point, the unthinkable happened — with the Generals losing three games for the first time in what felt like the history of mankind.
However, in true Gens fashion, the best senior hockey program in Canada was able to bounce back. After gaining back some veterans in the second half of the season and rounding out their bench, the Gens would about their business like they always do and won the Allan Cup Hockey West Championship after winning two series against the Stoney Plain Eagles and the Innisfail Eagles.
After Stoney and Innisfail duked it out to see who would claim the second western spot in the Allan Cup (Lacombe has the automatic berth), Lacombe once again took care of business — winning the Provincial Championship over Innisfail in a two-game, most goals series.
That brings us to now, with the Gens set to face off against Innisfail, the Rosetown Red Wings, the South East Prairie Thunder, the Haut-Madawaska Panthers and last year’s Allan Cup champs — the Stoney Creek Generals.
For Lacombe, after losing last year in the Allan Cup final to Stoney Creek, this is personal. The chance of being able to conquer their foes at home and skate the Allan Cup around the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex is a once in a lifetime opportunity and would easily be written into the annals of this great community.
To have the opportunity to make such an illustrious mark on a City not only requires discipline on ice, it also requires the full backing of the community — which Lacombe has shown since the 2019 Allan Cup was announced in 2018.
The Generals will begin their quest to be the Allan Cup Champs on Monday, April 8th at 8 p.m. at the Gary Moe Auto Group Sportsplex, preceded by both the Allan Cup Opening Ceremonies at 7 p.m. and a round-robin matchup between Innisfail and Rosetown starting at 4 p.m.
The eventual Allan Cup Champion will be crowned on Saturday, April 13th after the 8 p.m. final game.