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Mustangs host Innisfail Saturday in home opener

Fort Macleod Mustangs take on the Ranchland Hockey League’s newest team Saturday to open the 2021-’22 season.

The Mustangs host the Innisfail Eagles at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16 at the Fort Macleod and District Sports Centre.

The Eagles are led by coach Brian Sutter, who played 12 seasons in the NHL with St. Louis Blues, collecting 303 goals and 333 assists.

Sutter also coached in the NHL for 13 seasons with St. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins, Calgary Flames and Chicago Blackhawks, winning the Jack Adams Awards as coach of the year in 1990-’91.

The Eagles roster features other former NHLers, including goalie Allen York who played with the Columbus Blue Jackets and starred in the East Coast and American hockey leagues.

Defenceman Johnathon Aitken played in the NHL with the Boston Bruins and had a lengthy career in the American and East Coast leagues and in Europe.

Center Levi Nelson had a 10-year professional career in the AHL, ECHL and Europe.

Defenceman Joe Vandermeer played professionally in the American and East Coast leagues and in Germany. 

In addition to Fort Macleod and Innisfail, the Ranchland league this year features the Lethbridge Lightning, Kainai Braves, Nanton Palominos and Siksika Buffalos.

The teams play each other five times between Oct. 16 and Feb. 19.

After Saturday’s home opener against Innisfail, the Mustangs are on the road for the rest of October.

On Friday, Oct. 22 the Mustangs are at Siksika to take on the Buffalos at 8:30 p.m.

Fort Macleod plays the Lightning at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23 at Nicholas Sheran Arena in Lethbridge.

The Mustangs then head up Highway 2 to High River on Saturday, Oct. 30 for an 8:15 p.m. game against the Nanton Palominos.

The Palominos are playing home games at the High River rink since Nanton’s rink is not following the province’s COVID-19 restrictions exemption program.

The Mustangs return to Fort Macleod for a pair of games to start November.

The Lightning are in town for an 8:30 p.m. start Friday, Nov. 5 and Siksika is here for a 7:30 p.m. game Saturday, Nov. 6.

The following is the rest of the regular season schedule for the Mustangs:

Dec. 4 — Fort Macleod at Innisfail, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 5 — Fort Macleod at Innisfail, 2:30 p.m.
Dec. 10 — Fort Macleod at Siksika, 8:30 p.m.
Dec. 18 — Fort Macleod at Lethbridge, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 7 — Kainai at Fort Macleod, 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 8 — Siksika at Fort Macleod, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 14 — Fort Macleod at Kainai, 8 p.m.
Jan. 15 — Kainai at Fort Macleod, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 21 — Nanton at Fort Macleod, 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 22 — Fort Macleod at High River vs Nanton, 8:15 p.m.
Feb. 4 — Fort Macleod at Kainai, 8 p.m.
Feb. 11 — Lethbridge at Fort Macleod, 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 12 — Innisfail at Fort Macleod, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 19 — Fort Macleod at High River vs Nanton, 7:30 p.m.

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