Lethbridge - Two unanswered goals in the second period led the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns to a 2-1 regulation win, Saturday night, against the University of Regina Cougars and spilt of the weekend series.
Aislinn Kooistra and Kirsten Reeves each scored for Lethbridge, while Stephanie Sawchuck netted the lone goal for Regina.
Crystal Patterson started in net for the Pronghorns and stood tall between the pipes, facing a total of 52 shots on the night, while Toni Ross started for Regina and stopped all but two of the 25 shots she faced.
The Cougars seemed to have the upper hand offensively in the opening frame and, as a result, were rewarded with a number of great scoring chances. Shots by Nikki Watters-Matthes and Meghan Sherven each came close, as did Kylie Gavelin's hard shot from the slot. Bursting into the zone with speed, Kylee Kupper also had a great opportunity on the doorstep by her shot was gloved down by Patterson, who went on to face a total of sixteen shots in the opening period.
After a big faceoff win in Cougars' territory, Lethbridge's Chelsea Minor managed to get in close prime position in front of the net and tried to quickly put one past Ross, but the keeper shut the door and kept the game scoreless.
A turnover in the neutral zone, in the final minute of the first, allowed Kylie Gavelin and Stephanie Sawchuck to break out alone against the Lethbridge net-minder. Sawchuck drew out wide, went to her backhand, and quickly put a quick shot on target, which hit the post and snuck past Patterson.
After struggling to materialize many scoring chances in the first, Lethbridge came out strong in the second and Kooistra tied the game at ones near the midpoint of the second period. Stepping onto the ice at just the right time to receive a great stretch pass from Kaitlyn Bauer, the second-year forward found herself all alone on a breakaway and rose to the occasion, beating Ross low blocker-side and securing her second goal in as many games.
Lethbridge continued to push the pace and, after a number of great chances, took the lead for the first time late in the second. It took two shots but Reeves added her fourth of the season at 14:59. Her initial hard shot was turned aside by the keeper but she followed through seamlessly, grabbing her own rebound and putting the puck away.
The Cougars ramped up the pressure in the third, desperately trying to gain an elusive second goal. Reimer's shot through traffic was kicked wide, and Alexis Larson, Gavelin, and Brooklyn Moskowy each had great chances in close but none would manage to crack Patterson, who faced twenty shots in the third.
With this win, the Pronghorns 4-12-0 while the Cougars sit at 10-5-1. The Pronghorns return to home ice January 9th and 10th, playing host to the University of Manitoba Bisons, while the Cougars travel to Edmonton that same weekend and face off against the University of Alberta Pandas.