Northern Bears ready for weekend series against Weyburn

Members of the Prince Albert Northern Bears pay attention to head coach Steve Young as he draws up a drill during practice on Jan. 3, 2023. -- Nathan Reiter/Daily Herald

Early in the new year, the Prince Albert Northern Bears already have their eyes set on their return to action in the SFU18AAAHL following a near three-week hiatus for the Christmas holiday.

The Northern Bears will take on the Weyburn Gold Wings for a pair of games at the Art Hauser Centre on Saturday and Sunday afternoon. So far this season, the Northern Bears and Gold Wings have played each other three times, all taking place at Crescent Point Place in Weyburn. Prince Albert has won two of the three matchups.

Northern Bears head coach Steve Young says the two teams have a sense a familiarity with each other and know what to expect from their opponent.

“We hope that on home ice that we are a hard-working team. With Weyburn coming in for two games this weekend, it’s important that we work hard. We’ve had close games against them, and I don’t think it’s going to be any different. They play a good team game and it’s important that we get rid of our Christmas turkey and that we are ready to play.”

It will be a special weekend for Northern Bears forward Beau Chisholm, the 16-year-old rookie is originally from Weyburn. She says it will feel different to play against her hometown team in Prince Albert.

“Playing Weyburn in PA is going to be fun and it’s going to be different playing not in my home arena. It’s going to fun and it’s going to be a different game to play.”

The two reams last faced off almost exactly a month ago, with the Northern Bears taking a 3-1 victory on Dec. 3. Young says having had previous success against Weyburn shows the team what they need to do to achieve success.

“It gives you the confidence if you know and understand how you beat them. They play a good hard team game, and we have to do the same in return. We know what they are about, and they know what we are about. I think it’s going to be the team that works the hardest.”

The Northern Bears will also look to build off their most recent game prior to the Christmas break, a 4-1 loss to Swift Current. Young says they did play well in that game despite the final result on the scoreboard.

“It’s a clean slate from the Christmas break, but in saying that, the last game we played here was against Swift Current where we played a really good game and came up short. We can’t take things for granted and have to learn from the Swift Current game and go from there.”

For Beau Chisholm, she says she enjoyed the break but is looking forward to getting back on the ice with her teammates.

“It was a good break, and I’m excited to get back into the swing of things and everyone is ready to come strong. We’re out on the ice and playing hard and training hard. I think we know that we are a good team and we can beat them. We know where we stand.”

The Northern Bears currently sit in fifth place in the SFU18AAAHL standings with a record of 5-13-1-0 while Weyburn sits in sixth with a record 3-14-0-1.

Puck drops from the Art Hauser Centre on Saturday at 1:30pm and Sunday at 1pm.