EDMONTON – Rookie forward Alex Poznikoff scored twice, and added an assist to lead the University of Alberta Pandas hockey team (2-4-0) to a 4-2 home victory over the Regina Cougars (4-2-0) at Clare Drake Arena on Saturday afternoon. The win was the first at home for the Pandas, and snaps their three game losing streak.
Fifth-year forward Janelle Froehler and third-year forward Ashley Morin also scored for Alberta, while Lindsey Post made 23 saves to record her first win of the season, and 34th of her career. With the win, Post now sits in a tie for third on the Pandas all-time wins list, 20 behind Dana Vinge's 54. Carleen Meszaros and Kylie Gavelin were the lone goal scorers for Regina.
Alberta opened the game strong, outshooting the Cougars 14-3, and leading 2-0 after the first period. Poznikoff opened the scoring in the final four minutes of the frame, with an outstanding backhand shot just under the crossbar off the feed from Autumn MacDougall on the two-on-none chance. The Pandas would add to their lead just two minutes later. After a Gavelin tripping penalty put Alberta up a player, Froehler accepted a cross slot pass from Meghan Eady, and wired the one-timer past Toni Ross.
The Cougars would finally come to life in the second period, as similar to last night's game, rebounded from a poor first period to outshoot the Pandas in the second 14-6, and score their first goal of the game. After third-year forward Bailey Braden started the rush for the Cougars, Meszaros was able to accept her pass off the cycle, and hammer the rolling puck over Post's shoulder, cutting the Panda lead in half.
However, Poznikoff's speed was too much for the visitors to handle, as she scored her second of the night early in the third period. Froehler found Poznikoff on the doorstep, as she snuck her shot through Ross's seven-hole to restore the Alberta two goal lead. Gavelin would restore some life into the Cougars halfway through the final period, scoring her second of the season to cut the lead back to one.
Morin, however, added an insurance marker with nine minutes left, and Alberta was able to hang on to the two goal lead. The Cougars will now set their sights on the University of Saskatchewan, as they play the 3-1-1 Huskies in a home- and-home next weekend. The Pandas, meanwhile, will take part in a home-and-home of their own, as they dual with the 2-3-1 MRU Cougars next weekend.