CALGARY (CIS) – A thrilling game ended in heartbreak for the University of Alberta Pandas as the Montreal Carabins took a 4-3 victory to wrap up the quarterfinal round of the 2015 CIS women's hockey championship in Calgary.
Championship website: http://english.cis-sic.ca/championships/wice/index
With 7:51 remaining in the third period and the teams tied 3-3, the rebound off a shot from Carabins forward Marion Allemoz deflected off the Pandas' Deanna Morin and into the net to advance Montreal to the national semi-final.
Sixth-seeded Montreal moves on to play No. 2 Western in the late semi-final Saturday at 6:30 p.m MT (8:30 p.m. ET) live on Sportsnet ONE, looking to qualify for a fourth consecutive national championship game.
Alberta will face Moncton in a consolation semi-final Saturday at 11 a.m. MT (1 p.m. ET).
Despite being down by a goal with less than 10 minutes to play in the third period, the Carabins' displayed a valiant comeback, with the tying goal and the winning goal coming less than one minute apart.
"I'm very proud, especially of the way we came back from behind, said Carabins head coach Isabelle Leclaire. "Very honestly this didn't happen much this season this is where maybe we struggled a bit when we were behind in the game. It has been a tougher this year in that aspect so I'm very happy that we came back. I knew [the Pandas] were a very good defensive team, I knew they were intense in every aspect of the game and that they had a great goalie and that's what they showed tonight."
In the most evenly matched quarterfinal of the tournament, the two teams battled hard in a tight defensive first period that saw no goals and only nine shots between them. The game opened up in the second as three goals in the first eight minutes saw the Carabins take a 2-1 lead. Alberta tied it up on the power play in the final minute of the period off a slap shot from blueliner Jessie Olfert, which put them back on even terms going into the final frame.
The Pandas took their first lead of the night at the 4:01 mark of the third on a rebound goal by Natasha Steblin to make it 3-2. Then, with 8:42 left in the period, a shot by Laurie Mercier of the Carabins beat Pandas netminder Lindsey Post to tie the game once again, setting up the game-winner just 51 seconds later.
Despite several chances including a shot off the crossbar in the final minutes, the Canada West champion Pandas were unable to bounce back as the Carabins' defence shut them down.
"We tried to figure out what we could do to be successful against Montreal, but when you come to a tournament like this you try not to change too much, because you have to stick with what got you here in the first place," noted Alberta head coach Howie Draper. "We just kind of stuck with the game plan that we normally went with and we felt that it could be successful against Montreal, and we found that at times it was."
Montreal goaltender Élodie Rousseau-Sirois made 22 saves for the victory, while Post stopped 20 pucks for Alberta. Ariane Barker, who recorded a goal and an assist for the Carabins, earned the player of the game award for Montreal, while Lindsey Cunningham got the award for Alberta, also with a goal and an assist.
The Carabins move on to the final four at the Markin MacPhail Centre in Calgary as they get set to take on the Mustangs Saturday night. In the earlier semi-final, top-seeded McGill will face Atlantic champion St. Francis Xavier at 3 p.m. MT (5 p.m. ET). Both semi-finals will be broadcast live on Sportsnet ONE.
Official Boxscore: http://english.cis-sic.ca/championships/wice/2015/championship
Campbell (ALB) tripping, 3:04;
Lemieux (MTL) tripping, 14:48.
1. MTL Lore Baudrit (1) (Emmanuelle Passard, Rika Pilon-Robert), 3:23
2. ALB Lindsey Cunningham (1) (Alison Campbell, Natasha Steblin), 5:16
3. MTL Ariane Baker (1) (Jessica Cormier), 7:34
4. ALB Jessie Olfert (1) (Lindsey Cunningham), 19:20 PP
Lavallee (ALB) interference, 1:04;
Steblin (ALB) interference, 12:51;
Kelly (ALB) delay of game, 13:35;
Paradis (MTL) hooking, 17:56.
5. ALB Natasha Steblin (1) (unassisted), 4:01
6. MTL Laurie Mercier (1) (Ariane Barker), 11:18
7. MTL Marion Allemoz (1) (Audrey Gariépy), 12:09
Beaulieu (MTL) crosschecking, 8:54.
GOALS (by period)
MTL 0-2-2: 4
ALB 0-2-1: 3
SHOTS ON GOAL (by period)
MTL 4-12-4: 20
ALB 5-8-9: 22
MTL – Élodie Rousseau-Sirois (W, 1-0, 22 shots, 19 saves, 3 GA, 60:00)
ALB – Lindsey Post (L, 0-1, 20 shots, 16 saves, 4 GA, 59:02)
PLAYERS OF THE GAME:
MTL: Ariane Barker
ALB: Lindsey Cunningham
REFEREE: Meghan Mallette
LINESMEN: Kaylah Kreiger, Shannon Klein
CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE & RESULTS (all times MOUNTAIN TIME)
Thursday, March 12
15:00 Quarter-final 1: StFX 4, Guelph 3
19:00 Quarter-final 2: McGill 8, Calgary 2
Friday, March 13
11:00 Consolation 1: Guelph 4, Calgary 2
15:00 Quarter-final 3: Western 3, Moncton 1
19:00 Quarter-final 4: Montreal 4, Alberta 3
Saturday, March 14
11:00 Consolation 2: No. 7 Moncton vs. No. 3 Alberta (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
15:00 Semifinal 1: No. 4 StFX vs. No. 1 McGill (Sportsnet ONE / www.CIS-SIC.tv) *
18:30 Semifinal 2: No. 6 Montreal vs. No. 2 Western (Sportsnet ONE / www.CIS-SIC.tv) *
Sunday, March 15
11:00 5th-place game: No. 5 Guelph vs Winner Consolation 2 (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
14:30 Bronze (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
18:00 Final (Sportsnet 360 & ONE / www.CIS-SIC.tv) *
* The webcast of the semifinals & final are on pay-per-view basis.
About Canadian Interuniversity Sport
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