After the end of this weekend, the Airdrie Xtreme hope to still hold their title of provincial champions.

After a back-and-forth regular season, the U15 AAA Airdrie Xtreme of the Alberta Elite Hockey League won their first two rounds of playoffs to set themselves up for a chance to defend the title they won last year.

After finishing fourth in the south division with 20 wins, 11 losses, one overtime loss and one tie, the Xtreme got matched up with the Lethbridge Val Matteoti Golden Hawks in the first round of the playoffs and won the series two games to one.

"It was a fast, physical, high-tempo series, each game was a one-goal hockey game. It was a really good test for the boys and it was nice to see them come together as a team," stated Head Coach Alec Miller.

Heading into the second round, the Xtreme faced off against the number one ranked team in the south division - the Calgary Flames but was able to wrap up that series in two games out of the best of three.

"We came in as the underdogs and we proved a lot of people wrong. We took it to a team that had had our number all year and got the job done. "

Starting Thursday, the Xtreme will take on the Red Deer Rebels, St. Albert Raiders Sabres, Sherwood Park United Cycle Flyers and Knights of Columbus Squires all within three days to try and make the gold medal provincial championship game.

"They've worked hard to get here, but we know the job's not done. This has been our goal since the beginning of the season, which is to go back to back."

When it comes to finding success against these top-tier teams, playing high-speed hockey is key, stated Miller.

"We just have to keep pushing for all four lines, If we keep playing the style of hockey that we have been playing we can find success. The opponents we're coming up against these next few days are going to be tough and they're going to test us."

Miller is proud of the team and how far they have come so far this season as a lot of the players are first years.

"Our goal is to defend that championship. So, that's the mission come this weekend."

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