Calgary - For the third straight season, the Crowchild Classic series between the Mount Royal Cougars and the Calgary Dinos will be decided on the ice at the Scotiabank Saddledome. January 15 marks the culmination of the season long series between the two universities.
The Saddledome game has evolved into more than just a pair of hockey games. Viewed by many as the year’s marquee event, the game provides a unique opportunity for all members of the Calgary community to come together. “Rarely do you find an event that brings together students, faculty, alumni and community members the way that this game does,” says Cougars men’s hockey head coach Bert Gilling. “It is an incredible showcase for our student athletes and our university.”
The Dinos have won the first two Crowchild Classic series and currently lead this season’s edition with six wins, four losses and a tie, with four games to play. The once dominant Dinos have faced some resistance from the Cougars recently, as Mount Royal’s programs have grown over the years. “Our programs are getting more competitive against the Dinos and we are starting to see results,” noted Mount Royal Athletic Director Karla Karch. “With the increasing support from the Mount Royal community at events like this, the student athletes are able to elevate their performance.”
The Calgary Flames have once again gone out of their way to give the teams and their fans the full NHL experience. The concessions stands will be fully operational, serving food and beverages on the lower bowl level. The campus bookstores from both Mount Royal and Calgary will be selling merchandise including sweatshirts, t-shirts and other assorted team apparel. However, unlike a Flames game the event will be entirely FREE. Admission to the game and parking in the Saddledome parkade are free to the public. Tickets are available on both campuses as well as through the Flames Ticket Office at (403) 777-4646.
Beginning Monday, students, staff, and faculty at the University of Calgary can pick up their tickets at Kinesiology Client Services, the Students' Union offices, and Stör in MacEwan Student Centre. Additionally, pop-up ticket distribution centres will be across campus next week at the following locations:
Monday: Science Theatres, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; MacEwan Student Centre (outside Bookstore), 1:30-3:30 p.m.
Tuesday: MacEwan Student Centre (outside Bookstore), 1:30-3:30 p.m.
Wednesday: South Courtyard, MacEwan Student Centre, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; ICT Lobby, 1-3 p.m.
Thursday: Kinesiology Atrium, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Additional locations will be confirmed next week - please visit www.godinos.com/crowchildclassic for further details.
In 2014, the game set a Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) regular season attendance record as 6,016 fans passed through the turnstiles. Once inside the fans were treated to several amazing promotions and contests including a tuition giveaway from each of the institutions. Mario Jean, a fourth year Mount Royal student won a free semester in a competition during the second intermission of the men’s game. The 50/50 winner also took home over $8,000.
The women’s game will have a number of story lines heading into play. The Dinos are 9-1 lifetime against the Cougars but Mount Royal upset them in a shootout earlier this season. However, this time around the Dinos’ lineup will be sporting three Olympians. Four-time Canadian Olympic Champion Hayley Wickenheiser will be flanked by Captain Iya Gavriolva and Alexandra Vafina who also represented Russia in Sochi last February.
The Cougars men’s program is undefeated at the Saddledome, winning 3-1 in 2012-13 and then defeating the Dinos 4-3 in overtime last season. The Dinos are in third place in the conference currently sitting two points behind the Cougars. The two teams have never been more evenly matched and this year a first round playoff bye will be on the line. The Cougars have won both of their previous meetings this season but the Dinos still hold a 6-4 edge in the all-time series.
This event would not be possible if it were not for all the support of the Calgary Flames. Through the Flames Foundation for Life, the Calgary Flames support post-secondary institutions in Calgary via a $20,000 donation to each school's men's and women's hockey programs. In addition to their donations, the Flames are providing their facilities, their time and their staff to help make this annual event possible. Their support of amateur hockey and the CIS is second to none.
Dinos fans are encouraged to enter the Saddledome via the west entrance (off the +15 from the LRT) and wear red. Limited free parking will be available in Lot 'A' and the Saddledome parkade on the northeast corner of the building, but regular parking rates at Stampede Park will be in effect.
www.mrucougars.com / www.godinos.com
About the Crowchild Classic
The Crowchild Classic is an annual competition between the University of Calgary Dinos and the Mount Royal University Cougars in CIS regular season games across the sports of basketball, hockey, soccer, and volleyball. Each year, the school that wins the most games in the series is awarded 'The Medal' – a 68-kilogram cast iron City of Calgary manhole cover. For more information, visit www.crowchildclassic.ca.