SASKATCHEWAN USES THREE-GOAL THIRD TO EDGE ALBERTA
WINKLER, Man. – Neena Brick (Regina, Sask.) lead the way with a goal and two assists, Lauren Focht (Regina, Sask.) scored the game-winner late in the third period and Saskatchewan topped Alberta 3-2 in the opening game at the 2019 National Women’s Under-18 Championship on Tuesday afternoon.
The game was a tense affair through two periods, with both teams trading chances but unable to break through. It was even on the scoreboard and even on the shot clock as both teams put up 22 shots through two periods of 0-0 hockey.
Brick scored just under six minutes into the final frame to put Saskatchewan on the board first; she corralled the rebound off a shot by Ashley Messier (Wilcox, Sask.) and was able to poke it home for the opening goal.
Alberta answered back to even the score at 1-1 with a goal off the stick of Brooklyn Schroeder (Whitecourt, Alta.). Sarah Gaiser (Calgary, Alta.) fired in a shot from the point, and when Saskatchewan goaltender Arden Kliewer (Saskatoon, Sask.) couldn’t secure the puck, Schroeder pounced and snapped it home.
It only took Saskatchewan all of 86 seconds to regain the lead. Brick earned the first of her two assists when she fed a cross-ice pass to Elise Morphy (Regina, Sask.), who wired a shot through a maze of bodies in front to make it 2-1.
Focht scored what turned out to be the winner on the power play with 1:05 remaining. Brick fired a shot from in close that hit the post and rebounded right to Focht, who fired it past Alberta netminder Elise Hugens (Sherwood Park, Alta.).
Taze Thompson (Sherwood Park, Alta.) pulled Alberta within one with 24 seconds left, but Saskatchewan was able to hold off the late push and secure the victory.
Both teams are right back at it tomorrow, with Saskatchewan taking on Atlantic (1 p.m. CT) and Alberta going up against Ontario Red (5 p.m. CT).