Brendan Stasiewich, Mount Royal Sports Information
Calgary, AB- The Mount Royal Cougars (3-6-0-2) dominated play and picked up their third win of the year on Friday evening, defeating the Lethbridge Pronghorns (2-6-1-2) by a score of 2-1 at the Flames Community Arena in Calgary.
The Cougars finally found some offense in the first game of a home and home, registering 44 shots on goal.
Reanna Arnold and Tianna Ko picked up the Cougars' goals while Emma Pincott turned aside 29 of 30 shots for her first win of the season. Despite the loss, Pronghorns goalie Jessica Lohues was far and away the best player on the ice, keeping Lethbridge in the game by saving 42 shots.
The Cougars dominated play in the first, firing 16 shots at Lohues compared to just eight for the visitors.
The Cougars were given a good opportunity just after the midway point of the first. After a body checking penalty was called on Kirana Stocker in front of her own net, the Cougars went to work against the most penalized team in the conference.
Reanna Arnold made the visitors pay, opening the scoring on the powerplay with six minutes remaining in the first. Arnold gathered the puck in the corner before smoothly skating to the center of the circle. With a heavy Cougars presence in front of the net screening goaltender Jessica Lohues, Arnold sent a hard wrist shot to the short side for her third goal of the year.
Seven minutes into a back and fourth second period the Cougars were given another odd man opportunity after Mattie Apperson took a penalty in her own zone. The Cougars bombarded the Pronghorns on the powerplay with a plethora of good scoring opportunities. Lohues was forced to scramble for most of the two minutes but continued her strong play, stopping every Mount Royal chance.
The Pronghorns continued their undisciplined play as they committed another body checking penalty just a few minutes later, sending the Cougars to a five on three powerplay.
If not for the strong play of Lohues, the narrative of this game would have been much different. Lohues again fought off many Cougars' shots as the home team spent the duration of their powerplay in the Pronghorns' end. After all was said and done, Lethbridge was lucky to head back to their locker room only down one goal after two frames.
The Cougars finally managed to get another one past Lohues half way through the third. After a scramble in front left Lohues on the ice, Tianna Ko slid the puck into the net her first goal as a Cougar.
With less than two minutes remaining the Pronghorns pulled Lohues for an extra attacker. After the Cougars missed a few quality chances at the open net, the Pronghorns won an offensive zone faceoff coming out of a timeout and Jodi Gentile sent a slap shot passed Pincott to pull within one.
That was as close as Lethbridge would come. The Cougars kept the Pronghorns out of the offensive zone for the last minute of the game, picking up their third win of the season.
With the win Pincott improves to 1-5-1 on the season while the loss drops Jessica Lohues to 0-3.
The two teams will meet again tomorrow, as the Cougars will travel to Lethbridge for the back end of the home and home. Puck drop is slated for 7 P.M.