Connor Hood - Golden Bears and Pandas Athletics
While the Cougars have had some success against the Pandas in recent seasons, including a 2-1 win earlier this season in Edmonton, Friday night's game was all Pandas. Alberta opened the scoring in the first, added two more in the third, all the while outshooting MRU 29-16. Benning opened the scoring midway through the opening frame, ripping a wrist shot past Zoe De Beauville from 20 feet out.
Mount Royal, who have had their share of troubles scoring this season, were stuffed by the Pandas stingy defence throughout the game. MRU managed just four shots in the first period, none of which challenged Owen, and went 0-3 on the powerplay, with not much to show for their player advantages. What shots that did get through to Owen in the first two periods (11 total), were turned aside easily by the third-year Panda keeper, who didn't need to be stellar to earn the win.
The Pandas doubled their lead early in the third, as MacDougall scored her first of the night off a scramble in the MRU crease. After three whacks on goal, MacDougall's attempt from five feet out finally snuck through De Beauville's arm, and trickled across the goal line.
Bozek finally snapped Owen's shutout midway through the third, quickly firing the puck off a Pandas block in front, and past Owen.
However, that would be as close as the Cougars came, as MacDougall sealed the Alberta win with three minutes left. On a two-on-one, the third-year Panda tried feeding it across to Alex Poznikoff, but found a MRU stick instead, as the puck slid past a helpless De Beauville.
Both clubs will finish their 2017 half of the conference season tomorrow night, as the home-and-home series shifts to Calgary for the finale.