Cameron Doherty, Huskie Athletics
SASKATOON – Three goals in the second period, including a pair on the power play, led the University of Saskatchewan Huskies men's hockey team to a dominant 4-0 victory over the UBC Thunderbirds inside Merlis Belsher Place on Friday, Jan. 25.
Kohl Bauml led the way with a pair of goals, moving his season total to nine, while Sam Ruoppand Collin Shirley also scored in the win.
Taran Kozun moved into ninth in the Huskies' single-season record books with win number 16 on the year, making 17 saves for his third shutout in 2018-19.
Rylan Toth was strong for UBC, making 37 saves in the losing effort as Saskatchewan outshot the Thunderbirds 41-17 on the night.
The win moves Saskatchewan to a league-leading 20-3-0 on the season while UBC continues to fight for home-ice advantage in the playoffs with a record 11-10-2.
The first real chance of the game came seven minutes in when Shirley went on a great individual rush and slid the puck over to Logan McVeigh but Toth came up big with a blocker save.
Just minutes later the Huskies again nearly opened the scoring when Toth gave the puck away and got caught out of his net but Jaimen Yakubowski fired the puck just high over the open net.
With two minutes remaining in the opening frame Saskatchewan made their pressure pay off when Parker Thomas spotted a pinching Ruopp who made no mistake in firing the puck top-corner over.
The first period came to an end with Saskatchewan holding a 14-3 lead in shots and a 1-0 advantage on the score board
UBC nearly found an equalizer six minutes into the third period when Austin Vetterl and Michael Stenerson broke in on an odd-man rush but Stenerson couldn't get his shot on net.
The Huskies' lead was doubled after a Michael Sofillas shot squeaked out of Toth's glove, rolled off his back and onto the ice where Bauml was waiting to jam it into the open net.
Four minutes later Saskatchewan doubled their lead on the power play. Levi Cable, McVeigh and Bauml played a beautiful game of tic-tac-toe passing that ended with Bauml scoring his second of the night.
The game was put out of reach with just 30 seconds left in the frame when the Huskies red-hot power play struck again.
Alex Forsberg fired a hard pass into the slot that Collin Shirley deflected past a screened Toth to make the score 4-0 in favour of the home team.
UBC played by far their best hockey in the third period and Vetterl and Carter Popoff combined for a pair of chances in-tight at the start of the frame but Kozun was able to fight through a scramble in front to make the stops.
From there the Huskies were able to run out the remainder of the clock without much action to pick up their fifth win in a row.
These same two teams will be back in action tomorrow night with puck-drop scheduled for 7 p.m. inside Merlis Belsher Place. That game can be watched live Canadawest.tv.