Lacoka Locos eager for playoffs after finishing strong season

The Lacoka Locos have done it again. Approaching the end of their very strong season, the Strand Media Bantam B Lacoka Locos finished

TAKING AIM - Dayn Woods of the Lacoka Locos lines up a shot during a recent game against the Blackfalds Warriors.

TAKING AIM - Dayn Woods of the Lacoka Locos lines up a shot during a recent game against the Blackfalds Warriors.

The Lacoka Locos have done it again.

Approaching the end of their very strong season, the Strand Media Bantam B Lacoka Locos finished the season strong defeating the Blackfalds Warriors and the Kneehill Bulldogs in their last two regular season games.

Coach Bruce Clarke said that this has been a very good year for the Locos.

“They’re great,” said Clarke.

“They are a strong team full of a good bunch of second year players and a great bunch of first year players coming up from Pee Wee.”

At the June 3 game in Blackfalds, Lacoka came out strong right from the start of the game. Overwhelming the Warriors’ defense, the Locos outscored Blackfalds 3-1 by the end of the first period.

In the second period, things continued much the same.

Lacoka continued to outplay the Warriors and extend their lead. Blackfalds responded by upping its game and strengthening its defense.

Penalties were also prevalent in the second period, with both sides having at least one player in the box for most of the period. Clarke said this is nothing new to the Locos, partly because of their style of play, but there is not much that can be done about it.

“We certainly get our share of penalties but you’ve got to take them as it comes,” said Clarke. “Play your positions and kill the penalties.”

Score was 6-2 for the Locos at the end of the second.

Blackfalds came out much stronger in the third, even managing to press the Locos into their defensive end a few times and dominate much of the play. However, it was too little too late. While Blackfalds prevented Lacoka from scoring in the third, they weren’t able to catch up and the game ended 6-3 in favour of the Lacoka Locos.

Lacoka had its last regular season game on June 6 where they defeated the Kneehill Bulldogs 9-7, making their regular season record 12-1.

Clarke said the biggest contributor to the Locos’ success this season is that they are a strong passing team.

Clarke also said that the team’s movement on the offense has improved from the start of the season as well. He added that the Locos will continue to work on both these strengths as they head into playoffs.

Another thing the team needs to work on heading into playoffs is spreading the ball around and using each player equally, he said. He added the team has a tendency to lean on its strongest players but each line has players that are just as capable of playing the game.

“We don’t need four or five guys scoring, we want seven or eight guys scoring,” said Clarke. If the team can accomplish that, there should be nothing holding them back as they head into playoffs.

“We hope to win playoffs,” said Clarke.

Clarke added that last year’s Locos Pee Wee team won provincials and many of those players are now part of the Bantam Locos.

As such, Clarke said that not only do the Locos plan to win the league, but there are confident they can win provincials as well.

Meanwhile, the Strand Media Bantams and the C-Key Trucking Pee Wees went to the Spirit of the Sticks Tournament in Innisfail this past weekend.

The Pee Wees won gold and the Bantams won silver.

The regular season is now finished. All teams start playoffs this weekend with a double elimination format.

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