Welcome to Inferno Alphabet Soup, a acronym analysis of the week that was for the Canadian Women’s Hockey League’s Calgary I-N-F-E-R-N-O!
This week, a look back at the Saturday-Sunday homestand against Les Canadiennes de Montreal.
I- In The Mix.
This was a monster series at Winsport, with not just Clarkson Cup (x2) Rematch bragging rights on the line, but top spot in the current CWHL standings up for grabs too. And I mean, there might be a smidge of historical hockey rivalry between these two towns ever since the 1924 Stanley Cup final and all the way up to the recent pair of Clarkson Cup showdowns. Now, despite all that hoopla AND the disheartening feeling that comes with being unable to leapfrog into first place, the Inferno are still only 3 points back of MTL, and still very much in the first-place race.
N- No Rivalry?
“I don’t want to focus on this rivalry thing because every team in this league is good. So as far as the Montreal-Calgary thing goes, we can just let go of it.” -Erica Kromm to M&G’s @raminashlah
Press clippings dismissing obvious press questions are just as good as answering the obvious press questions, if you will.
A bright spot for the homeside this weekend was the 4th annual Keep The Beat game, putting the fun in fundraising for the Heart& Stroke Foundation! In the previous three years, the Inferno had raised a whopping $13000. Flames President of Hockey Ops was on hand for the ceremonial puck drop in game one. Find more of the Keep The Beat tradition in this piece from Matchsticks & Gasoline correspondant @raminashlah:
E- Emerance Maschmeyer
Montreal’s goaltender put on a heck of a show, rendering the Inferno to a single goal over the two contests, including a shutout in the Sunday sweeper. A total of 47 saves altogether in a stonewalling performance. Emerance is also a former first round pick of the Inferno in the 2016 CWHL draft, but was she was swapped to Montreal in August of last year. Should we stack this on the “Calgary Montreal Rivalry History” pile? Magic 8-Ball says yes! And so does...
Despite the outcome, the Montreal-Calgary games are always big. An emotional post-game interview from Calgary defenseman Erica Kromm said much more than the quotes did, and rumoured rumblings of regular-season frustration against Montreal from CGY GM Kristen Hagg only add fuel to that runaway train. The final two contests of the regular season are Marc 10th & 11th in La Belle Province against Les Canadiennes, so mark your calendars!
N- New Year, Same You!
New Year’s Resolutions are all about change and improvement, but in all honestly the Inferno haven’t left themselves much room for that considering their impressive campaign so far. Sure, there’s a bad taste in everyone’s mouth after this one, but Sunday was Calgary’s first regulation-time loss of the season and they still find themselves nipping at the heels of Les Canadiennes for 1st place. The rest of year sees seven regular season series remaining, with the next six contests on the road, and plenty of opportunity to keep consistently at-or-near the top.
O- On to the next!
The next action for our Ladies In Red isn’t for a couple weeks, when the Vance Rays are in YYC on the 20th and 21st of January. The Rays sit only 2 points back of the Inferno, making this another critical set of contests. Keep set to Matchsticks & Gasoline for all your Inferno coverage!
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