Undefeated Edmonton Thunder roll right to top of Esso Cup standings
by Alexa Dziubenko
BURNABY, B.C. – Edmonton Thunder (Pacific) holds on tight to top spot at the 2013 Esso Cup following a 3-2 win over LHFDQ Nord (Quebec) during Thursday’s early game at Bill Copeland Sports Centre, in front of a cheering crowd of 1,500 adoring elementary school children.
Despite taking three penalties in the first period, Edmonton managed to steal an early 2-0 lead, thanks to goals scored by player of the game Elizabeth Salyn (Edmonton, Alta.) and Mikaeli Cavell (Edmonton, Alta.). Nicole Gorda (Edmonton, Alta.) assisted on the first midway through the period, while Amy Boucher (Edmonton, Alta.) helped out on the next goal, which went into the net with just 1.5 seconds left on the clock.
But after that the Edmonton Thunder stayed out of the box for the most part, and their ability to play a relatively clean game ended up being a key factor in this win.
Neither LHFDQ Nord nor the Edmonton Thunder could capture a goal in the second period. Both teams experienced a long shift, as LHFDQ Nord managed to keep the play in Edmonton’s end for three straight minutes. Jade Downie-Landry (St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que.) created great chances for the Quebec reps, including a killer backhanded shot midway through the period.
At the start of the third, LHFDQ Nord closed the gap to 2-1 with a shorthanded goal from Valerie Audet (St-Bruno, Que.). Audet now leads the tournament in points, with three goals and eight assists. A desperate LHFDQ Nord squad starting playing a little rough, but its deficit only widened, as Taylor Hughson (Edmonton, Alta.) scored another power play goal at 11:36 in the third.
Despite tightening the gap with another shorthanded goal, this time from Danae Guay (Beloeil, Que.), and pulling the goalie in the last 40 seconds of the game, LHFDQ Nord came up one goal short in contention for the top of the tournament standings.
Edmonton Thunder head coach Cassea Shols commented on her team’s flawless record following the game. “We never expected it,” she said. “You never know with these kinds of tournaments, but it feels awesome to be here. I really have to thank the girls who got us here.”
The Edmonton Thunder and LHFDQ Nord will both play in semifinals Friday, April 26, to fight for spots in Saturday’s gold medal game at the 2013 Esso Cup. The semis are set for 2 p.m. PT and 4 p.m. PT at Bill Copeland Sports Centre.
|Game Information/Renseignements sur le match|
|Game #/No. de match||13
|Arena/Aréna||Bill Copeland Sports Centre
|Date||Thurs. Apr. 25, 2013
||Time/Heure||12:00 p.m. PT
|Goals & Penalties/Buts et pénalités|
|First Period/Première période
09:15 PAC Elizabeth Salyn (Nicole Gorda)
19:58 PAC Mikaeli Cavell (Amy Boucher)
03:55 PAC Bench/Banc (Unsportsmanlike Conduct/Conduite antisportive)
06:34 QUE Alexandra Nikolidakis (Hooking/Accrocher)
14:17 PAC Alexandra Poznikoff (Tripping/Faire trébucher)
16:36 PAC Taylor Hughson (Tripping/Faire trébucher)
|Second Period/Deuxième période
09:18 QUE Alexe Drouin (Body-checking/Mise en échec corporelle)
10:04 PAC Jessica Healey (Body-checking/Mise en échec corporelle)
|Third Period/Troisième période
06:36 QUE Valérie Audet SH/AN
11:36 PAC Taylor Hughson (Amy Boucher) PP/AN
15:50 QUE Danae Guay (Vyckie Gélinas, Eve-Audrey Picard) SH/AN
06:04 QUE Alexandra Nikolidakis (Holding/Retenir)
07:35 QUE Roxanne Daley (Hooking/Accrocher)
08:32 PAC Brett Campbell (Interference/Obstruction)
10:09 QUE Jade Downie-Landry (Cross-checking/Double-échec)
14:57 QUE Katia Boulianne (Tripping/Faire trébucher)
|Goaltenders/Gardiennes de but|
|Shots on Goal/Tirs au but||1||2||3||Total|
|Players of the Game/Joueurse du match|