STARS BEAT SLASH, STAY PERFECT AT ESSO CUP
JASON LA ROSE
BRIDGEWATER, N.S. – Joelle Fiala and Mackenna Parker had a goal and an assist apiece, and the Saskatoon Stars scored four unanswered goals to top the St. Albert Slash 4-1 in a battle of unbeaten teams Tuesday at the 2018 Esso Cup.
The win keeps the Stars atop the standings at 3-0, and ends a nine-game winning streak for the Slash; they became the first team to ever go 7-0 en route to the national championship last year, and had won their first two games this week.
St. Albert struck first just past the seven-minute mark when Allison Reich circled out from behind the net and beat Saskatoon goaltender Jordan Ivanco past the glove, but Arnold converted a centering pass from Fiala six minutes later to tie the game.
Parker gave the Stars the lead for good within 30 seconds of the Arnold goal, going short-side over the glove of Slash netminder Camryn Drever to send the West champions to the dressing room up 2-1.
St. Albert carried the play in the second period, outshooting the Stars 12-7, but Ivanco ensured her team would carry its one-goal advantage into the final 20 minutes.
Unlike the second, the third period was all Saskatoon; it directed 16 shots at Drever, and scored twice to put the game away.
Fiala was first at 5:34, getting her stick on a point shot from Dana Wood, and Anna Leschyshyn put the icing on the cake with under eight minutes to go, cutting into the slot and wiring a shot just under the cross-bar.
It’s the first time a West Region team has started with three wins in as many games since the Weyburn Gold Wings turned the trick when they won the national title in 2014.
Saskatoon will go for a fourth ‘W’ in a row against host Metro Boston Pizza on Wednesday night (7 p.m. AT), while the Slash will look to bounce back against the Northern Selects (12 p.m. AT).