Written by Braedan Willis
WINNIPEG-Alberta took a back and forth game on Friday night by a score of 4-3 in shootout over #6 Manitoba in and would go on to sweep the weekend series with a 1-0 win in women's hockey on Saturday, November 19 at Wayne Fleming Arena.
With the win, Alberta improved their record to 3-3-3-3 and Manitoba dropped to 7-3-1-1.
"I think their team speed really put us back on our heels, we never really were able to establish a consistent forecheck", said Bison head coach, John Rempel after being asked what he thought posed the biggest problem for his Bison squad.
After a scoreless first period, Alberta would finally open the scoring just past the half way mark of the period. Amy Boucher split the Manitoba defense to give herself a breakaway and was able to tuck one through the legs of Amanda Schubert.
Venla Hovi would get the best scoring chance for the U of M in the second period. Her shot on the 2-on-1 opportunity, however, would be stopped by Alberta's Lindsey Post. Shots on goal were even after two periods with each side having 16. The second frame would begin with a tripping penalty taken by Manitoba's Erica Rieder. The Alberta power play would have their own turn to put the pressure on the Bisons but once again Bison netminder Schubert came up with several difficult stops to help her team kill off the penalty.
Hovi continued her push for a goal to tie up the game for the Bisons at the beginning of the third but once again was stopped by Post. Schubert would be forced to match her opposing goaltender with a big stop on Boucher's second breakaway of the game. A point shot from Bison defenseman, Megan Neduzak, would beat the Alberta goalie, but not the goal post. That would be as close as Manitoba would get as the game would go on to end 1-0 in favour of the visitors.
The first period began with not many offensive chances coming from either team. Post did however make two key saves on an early scramble in front of the Alberta net. The majority of the offence started to come off back-to-back power plays for the Bisons. With many promising looks and chances coming the Herd way, the Alberta penalty kill would stymie the Bison power play. The march to the penalty box would continue for both teams but Schubert, would come up with three big stops late in the opening period to keep the score 0-0 going into the first intermission.
Manitoba will travel to play Saskatchewan next weekend (Nov. 25-26) to face the Huskies. The Pandas will stay home to play the Pronghorns from Lethbridge (Nov. 25-26).