Pandas sneak one out against Cougars on Senior Night
Justin McCaffrey, Mount Royal Cougars Sports Information
CALGARY, AB - The Alberta Pandas stole the show on senior night defeating the Mount Royal Cougars 1-0 at Flames Community Arenas. Lindsey Cunningham scored the lone goal of the game for the Alberta Pandas.
The Cougars had their share of chances to open the scoring, earning three power plays in the first ten minutes of the game. Pandas goaltender Lindsey Post had other ideas, thwarting the Cougars on each of the early power play chances.
Post made nine saves in the first period to keep the Cougars off the board. Jess Ross, playing in her final game as a Cougar, was also perfect in the first stopping all three shots she faced.
Alberta closed the gap in shots to 13-9 by the halfway mark of the second period but the game remained scoreless.
Shortly after the halfway mark of the second period, the Cougars earned a 5-on-3 power play. Mount Royal worked the puck around the outside but the Pandas defensive formation was impenetrable. It was the Pandas who had the best scoring chance on the penalty kill as Captain Janelle Froehler was robbed in tight by Jess Ross.
Alberta broke the deadlock at the 14:53 mark of the second period when Lindsey Cunningham grabbed a loose puck, coming out of the corner. Cunningham caught Ross cheating on the pass and was able to squeeze the puck between her and post. The Pandas took a 1-0 lead into the dressing room after two.
Alberta dominated the play throughout the third period but Jess Ross and the Cougars held the fort. With just over six minutes to go in the game, Mount Royal earned another 5-on-3 advantage. After working the puck around the top of the umbrella, Rachel Piitz had a glorious chance down low. Piitz just couldn't get enough wood on it to tie the game.
Lindsey Post held it together and made 28 saves for her league-leading eighth shutout of the season as Alberta improved to 15-9-1-3.
Mount Royal falls to 8-14-3-3 to close out the 2015-16 season.
The Pandas will have to wait until all of the scores from around the conference are in to find out who their opponent will be in the first round of the playoffs. They will also be watching intently to find out if they were able to secure the first round bye.
Prior to the contest the Cougars bid farewell to three seniors that had been instrumental for them in their transition to the CIS. Jess Ross, Jocelyn Froehlich and Janessa Jenkins all suited up for Mount Royal for the final time on Saturday night as the Cougars were eliminated from playoff contention.