The Saskatchewan Shockers have had a rough beginning to the season. Through the first two and a half weeks of the season, the Shockers compiled an 0-13-1 record. The mood among the fans at Potash Arena was best summarized by a sign that read, “We Need a Saskatche-WIN!”
The Shockers finally fulfilled that request this week by posting a 3-1 win over their fellow Canadian club, the Hamilton Pistols. The crowd erupted in a rowdy standing ovation as the final seconds ticked off the clock and the Shockers dogpiled at center ice.
“Finally!” exulted goalie Zeke Zagurski, who made 39 saves to seal the victory. “We’ve been waiting on this one for too long.”
The team celebrated with a parody of the NHL’s traditional Stanley Cup celebration. Center Napoleon Beasley, the team’s captain, retrieved a garbage can from the clubhouse and skated a lap around the ice while holding it in the air. The Shockers then passed it off to one another, with each teammate taking a victory lap as the fans roared. “Yeah, it was a little silly, maybe,” said Beasley. “But we were all ready for a release. It’s just been so hard, coming up short every time.”
Coach Myron Beasley, Napoleon’s father, praised his team for maintaining their competitive spirit. “I mean, we knew we weren’t going to lose them all,” said the Shockers coach. “But it’s been a struggle. I give the guys credit; they haven’t put their heads down or stopped trying. They’ve been working hard to get to this day. And it’s fun!” As Beasley finished speaking, the played doused him in a beer shower.
In the other locker room, Pistols coach Ron Wright praised the Shockers’ effort. “We all knew they were going to get this win sometime,” Wright said. “Obviously, we’d hoped that it wouldn’t be us who gave it to them. But they earned it; they dug in the corners and kept the pressure on, and that was the key.” Wright did find the Shockers’ postgame celebration distasteful. “I mean, for God’s sake, it’s one win,” said Wright. “Show a little pride! If my players ever did that for a meaningless regular-season game, they’d be walking the bread line the next morning.”