X-Women keep medal hopes alive with OT win over Gaels

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Courtesy of University of Toronto sports information

March 9, 2013, Toronto (CIS) – Rookie forward Taylor Dale scored with 2:05 remaining in overtime to lift the StFX X-Women to a 2-1 victory over the OUA champion Queen’s Gaels on Day 2 of the CIS women’s hockey championship Friday afternoon at Varsity Arena.

A native of Oromocto, N.B., Dale tipped in a Jenna Downey point shot that ricocheted off teammate Abigail Laking to beat Gaels goaltender Karissa Savage (Calgary) and give StFX their first win of the tournament.

The X-Women, who fell to the No. 5 and defending national champion Calgary Dinos 4-0 in their first game, await the results of Game 3 in Pool B action to determine whether they play for bronze for fifth place on Sunday.

“We played a very tough game last night and at times we didn’t have our legs,” said X-Women bench boss David Synishin. “But I think the third period and overtime were indicative of the team that we are this year. They pushed us to our limits but our goaltender played very well.”

The Gaels will have to bounce back versus the Dinos tomorrow at 4 p.m. A Queen’s win in regulation time over Calgary would advance the No. 3 seeds to the gold-medal game over the defending champs.

“StFX is a good, solid team after proving themselves champions out East year after year,” said Gaels head coach Matt Holmberg. “It was a close and exciting game but unfortunately we came out on the wrong end.”

Queen’s forward Brittany McHaffie (Guelph) opened the scoring when a loose puck found her stick in the high slot and a quick release beat St FX netminder Katie Greenway just 2:50 into the contest.

A native of Guelph, Ont., Greenway stood tall from then on and posted 28 saves in the win.

The second period went back-and-forth, with neither team able to find the back of the net. The Gaels went 0-for-3 on the powerplay in the middle frame, outshooting the X-Women 10-6, and maintained the one-goal lead heading into the third.

StFX finally got on the board and notched their first goal of the championship four minutes into the third period. Third-year defencemen Alex Pitts of Antigonish, N.S., skated in off the blue line and sent the puck through traffic to beat Savage.

Both squads had chances to bury the go-ahead goal midway through the frame. Downey, the StFX team captain, rang a point shot off the post, before a Queen’s shot from CIS all-Canadian Morgan McHaffie bounced off the cross bar and hit Greenway’s back 30 seconds later.

The teams continued to trade scoring chances up until the final buzzer as Greenway robbed a point-blank shot from Queen’s captain Kristin Smith and Savage denied X-Women all-Canadian Alex Normore on a fast break the other way in the last minute of regulation.

Championship website: http://english.cis-sic.ca/championships/wice/index

The Gaels gained the man-advantage one minute into the extra frame and peppered Greenway with shots; however, the X-Women killed off the penalty and proved victorious six minutes later.

SCORING SUMMARY

Complete boxscore: BOXSCORE

StFX 2, Queen’s 1 (overtime)

FIRST PERIOD

SCORING:

1. QUE Brittany McHaffie (1) (Kristin Smith, Danielle Girard), 2:50;

PENALTIES:

Alyssa Hennigar (StFX) tripping, 9:30;

Team (StFX) too many men, 14:26;

SECOND PERIOD

SCORING:

(no scoring)

PENALTIES:

Jessica McCillough (StFX) roughing, 7:13

THIRD PERIOD

SCORING:

2. StFX Jenna Pitts (1) (Erin Brophy), 4:10 ;

PENALTIES:

Mary Coughlin (QUE) body checking, 7:39;

Jenna Downey (StFX) body checking, 13:01

OVERTIME

SCORING:

1. StFX Taylor Dale (1) (Abigail Laking, Jenna Downey), 7:55

PENALTIES:

Alyssa Hennigar (StFX) hooking, 1:00;

GOALS (by period)

StFX: 0-0-1-1:2

QUE: 1-0-0-0:1

SHOTS ON GOAL (by period)

StFX: 10-6-19-6:41

QUE: 6-10-10-4:30

POWER PLAY:

StFX: 0-1

QUE: 0-5

GOALTENDERS

StFX: Katie Greenway (W, 1-0, 30 shots, 29 saves, 67:55)

QUE: Karissa Savage (L, 0-1, 41 shots, 39 saves, 67:55)

PLAYERS OF THE GAME:

StFX: Jenna Downey

QUE: Karissa Savage

REFEREE: Lacey Senuk

LINESMEN: Justine Todd, Lysanne Patry

ATTENDANCE: 280

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