Bombers make first appearance in national top 20 ranking

For the first time this season, the Flin Flon Bombers are officially considered one of Canada’s top junior A teams.

In the Dec. 9 edition of the CJHL’s weekly power rankings, the Bombers were upgraded to the 19th spot on the top 20 list. It’s the first time this season the Bombers have been listed as part of the top 20, although the team has made a pair of appearances as honourable mentions on the list so far this season.

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The team is one of only two SJHL clubs on the list, joining the first-place Battlefords North Stars. The Stars, currently in the midst of a four-game losing skid, fell from fourth spot to eighth in the latest rankings.

The Bombers currently boast the SJHL’s most potent powerplay and offence, having scored 138 goals in 31 games – an average of nearly four and a half goals for every game – and have three players in the top five in SJHL scoring. The Bombers have gone 8-1-1 in their last 10 games and have at least a point in each of their last six games.

Throughout the season, the Bombers have scored 47 powerplay goals, well ahead of second-place Humboldt’s 34 goals.

Top spot in the national rankings is occupied by the AJHL’s Brooks Bandits, who have an impressive 31-1-1 record through 33 games in Canada’s most difficult junior A leagues. Aside from one regulation loss Nov. 9, the Bandits have earned at least a point in every game they’ve played this season.

A number of teams featuring former Bombers are also in the top 20. The fourth-ranked College Français de Longueuil in the Quebec LHJAAAQ league include ex-Bomber netminder Gabriel Waked, while the tenth-place Powassan Voodoos of the NOJHL now have the rights of defenceman Jack Craycroft. Forward Zach Purcell, who was at camp with the Bombers this fall before being traded, plays with the Steinbach Pistons, who sit 14th overall, while Vincent Nardone’s Penticton Vees sit 17th.

The Bombers also sit second in the SJHL’s weekly power rankings. The team will play a trio of road games this week, including in Humboldt Dec. 12 and a two-game set against first-place Battlefords Dec. 13-14.

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