SOYKO’S FIRST GOAL STANDS AS GAME-WINNER FOR BEARS
MORDEN, Man. – Alli Soyko had to wait until the final game of the preliminary round to record her first goal at the 2017 Esso Cup, but the timing proved key, as the goal stood as the game-winner in a 3-2 Prince Albert Bears victory over the Harfangs du Triolet on Thursday afternoon.
The scoring started early for Prince Albert, just 1:04 into the first period. Camryn Amundson came flying into the Harfangs zone along the wing, with Brooke Hobson trailing through the middle of the ice. A perfect pass from Amundson gave Hobson all the time to fire high glove side on Mélyann Daigneault for a 1-0 Bears lead.
Triolet answered just over two minutes later, off a 3-on-2 rush. Zoé Thibault took the initial shot, then followed into the crease for a rebound where Megan Bureau-Gagnon helped drive it in for a 1-1 tie.
Another odd-man rush resulted in the third goal of the game. The Bears were spread out three across coming in on one Harfangs defender and Daigneault. Jaydn Kushniruk, leading the rush, decided to keep and fire high, ringing it off the crossbar, down and in for a 2-1 Prince Albert lead.
In the second, the Bears added another early to increase their lead to 3-1. With a loose puck rolling just over the Harfangs' blue-line, Daigneault got into a race with Soyko. The goaltender got there first, but Soyko picked Daigneault’s pocket and had a wide-open cage for her first of the tournament, which would also turn out to be the game-winner.
Near the six-minute mark of the middle frame, Triolet made the most of a power play to cut the lead to 3-2. Sarah-Jane Côté, skating along the offensive blue-line, sent a backhand drop pass to the other point, setting up Sandrine Veillette for a booming slap shot, which went straight to the back of the net.
Triolet would be unable to score the equalizer and the game would finish 3-2, improving Prince Albert to 2-3 through the preliminary round. The Harfangs finished 3-2 and will wait for the results from the final game on Day 5 to confirm their semifinal opponent.