The Cochrane Generals are ready to turn up the dial on Friday night for their run at the HJHL championship.

The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. at the Cochrane Arena for the first game of a best-of-three preliminary round against the High River Flyers. If necessary, game three returns here on Sunday.

Gens head coach Kurtis Jones says the bench is healthy and the players are hungry for the championship.

"We're pretty deep as a group," he says. "We didn't finish in the season where we wanted, but we have a pretty good hockey team. We had a little bit of a down, battling injuries, players' illness and school and all that, but I think we'll turn it around now."

Should the Gens advance from the first round, it doesn't get any easier in the highly-competitive south division. They'll be facing the Medicine Hat Cubs in a best-of-seven south semifinal.

"We've got a hard road, but we can do it," says Jones. "We can go for the push."

In the club's arsenal are three scorers in the top 15 in the league. Patrick Forde finished second with 66 points, 32 goals, and 34 assists. Not far behind is Tristan Ripplinger, four overall with 54 points, and rookie linemate Logan Paquette is 15th with 44 points.

The Gens scoring isn't one dimension. Players like Connor Stephenson can wrinkle the mess while adding a physical presence on the ice. Veterans Riley Hopper, Dagan Kadlec, Diago Coelho, Andrew Guss, and Jamal Kalaf have all contributed key goals in the past and have plenty of HJHL and provincial 'B' playoffs experience.

There's also a strong group of rookies ready for eager for their first taste of HJHL playoff action.

The Gens went 4-1 against the Flyers in the regular season, losing one in a shoot-out. The Flyers may have finished last in the south with just six wins, but don't let that fool you, says Jones.

"They're a good hockey club. They're goaltending is spectacular and they've got some guys who are game changers, and we know that."

Last season, the Gens were an HJHL championship finalist and won a silver medal in the Alberta Junior 'B' provincial championships.