Nov 17, 2017
Arron Lai; Dinos Communications
CALGARY - A late third period goal by Zach McPhee with eight minutes to play propelled the University of Regina Cougars to a 3-2 victory against the University of Calgary Dinos at Father David Bauer Arena on Friday night.
The match was a back-and-forth, physical affair with the teams combining for 11 penalties (six on Regina, and five on the Dinos).
The Cougars opened the game's scoring on a phenomenal passing play between Zak Zborosky and captain Cody Fowlie. Zborosky received the puck after a faceoff win, and weaved a perfect pass across the ice to Fowlie who scored on a one-timer.
The remainder of the first period was characterized by continual rough play. After offsetting roughing penalties to the Dinos and Cougars, the Cougars picked up three more penalties to give the Dinos multiple powerplay opportunities. The Dinos put up 14 shots in the period, but were unable to find an equalizer. This was the theme of the night, as the Dinos had many opportunities, but were unable to capitalize.
"Just really disappointed," Dinos head coach Mark Howell stated when asked about his team's performance. "We did not play hard, and we did not compete."
The second period opened with the same intensity as the first, with both teams playing physically in search of the game's second goal. After nine minutes of back-and-forth action, third year arts student Mitch Cook would score his first of the season for the Dinos to tie the game at one. Second year Logan Fisher stole the puck from a Cougars defender on a strong forecheck, and freed it to Cook who would fire a top shelf laser to even the score.
"It was good to finally get one," Cook explained. "It was a great pass by [Logan] Fisher and I just had to take care of the rest. I thought our lineup played really well tonight and it was nice to contribute offensively."
Regina would open the third period with a powerplay goal five minutes into the final frame. Tristan Frei redirected a Landon Peel point shot to put the Cougars ahead 2-1. Minutes later, the Dinos would take a penalty. With seconds left on the Regina powerplay, third year Dino Robbie Fisher would steal the puck from the Cougars at the blueline. A speedy Chris Rauckman would jump up on the play and catch up with Fisher, giving the Dinos a two on zero breakaway. Fisher feathered a pass to Rauckman who made no mistake in putting the puck short side on Cougars goalie Michael Herringer.
However, the Cougars retook the lead shortly after as Zach McPhee would score his first of the season to put Regina ahead 3-2. That would be the final score, as Regina picked up their second win of the season.
"Give Regina credit, they play hard, they get in your face," said Dinos head coach Mark Howell. "They play a really competitive brand of hockey. They are physical, heavy, and they block shots."
This is not uncharted territory for the Dinos, as they have dropped the opening game of their last two series'. However, they bounced back on both occasions, securing a victory the next night, and a series split.
"We got to find some resiliency, and some toughness to our game," notes Coach Howell on how his team can prepare for tomorrow.
Calgary and Regina will face off again tomorrow in a matinee game, with puck drop set for 2 p.m. at Father David Bauer arena.
Photo by David Moll