Pandas shutout Bisons to open New Year

Pandas shutout Bisons to open New Year

EDMONTON – Alison Campbell scored the only two goals of the game, as the University of Alberta Pandas shutout the visiting University of Manitoba Bisons 2-0 Friday night at Clare Drake Arena.

Panda goalie Lindsey Post stopped all 14 shots she faced for her fifth shutout of the season, and fourth in her last five conference games. Meanwhile, third-year keeper Rachel Dyck made 15 saves in between the pipes for the Bisons in the loss.

The game started out phenomenally for the Canada West leading Pandas, scoring on their first shot of the game just 20 seconds in. Campbell accepted the pass from Autumn MacDougall, and wired a shot from just inside the blue-line over Dyck's shoulder for her third goal of the season.

Both teams entered the matchup as the top two defensively in the conference, and the lived up to that billing throughout the rest of the first period. The Pandas would muster just five more shots through the final 19 minutes, while the Bisons fired just six.

The second period was very similar to the first, as both teams played an incredibly tight checking 20 minutes. Despite being on the powerplay for over 10 minutes through the opening two frames, Alberta would manage just 10 shots through two periods, and were unable to extend their lead.  The Bisons had the best scoring opportunity in the second period, but Karissa Kirkup's wide open shot from the slot was turned aside by Post.

Alberta came out hungry in the third period looking for the insurance marker, but were unable to beat Dyck on a pair of odd-player chances. Looking for the equalizer, the Bisons would be unable to counteract a strong Pandas defence, firing a measly three third period shots on Post. Campbell would add her second of the game into the empty net, sealing the two goal Pandas win.

The win vaults Alberta out of a tie with the Bisons, and into clear possession of first place in the conference with a 10-0-6-1 record. The Bisons, now 9-0-7-1, fall into third place in the conference with 28 points.

The two inter-provincial rivals will square off on Saturday, with the rematch set for 2:00 p.m. at Clare Drake Arena.