The University of Saskatchewan Huskies rallied to a 3-2 win in their opening match of the season over the visiting University of Manitoba Bisons Saturday at Field 7 in PotashCorp Park.
The Huskies managed to overcome an early 1-0 deficit thanks in large part to two goals by Kelly Cerkwoniak. The fifth-year midfielder scored the game winner in the 68th minute. Cerkwoniak sent a drive at the goal from 10 yards outside of the box that took an unexpected bounce in front of Bison keeper Chloe Werle, hoping over her shoulder and into the net.
With the win the Huskies improve to 1-0 on the season. Manitoba drops to 1-1-1 after playing a pair of matches last weekend.
Manitoba opened the scoring in the 17th minute of the match. Alyssa Robinson collected a bouncing ball in the box and sent a hard shot to the wide side of the net to give the Bisons an early lead.
The lead held up until the 45th minute when Cerkwoniak was tackled hard in the box, leading to a penalty kick. Cerkwoniak stepped up to the penalty spot and notched her first goal of the season with a shot to the right side of the goal.
Saskatchewan used the momentum from the goal to end the first half as they opened the second with a strong surge. The hard work paid off as Leesa Eggum was quick to collect a ball that ricocheted off of a pair of defenders. Eggum made no mistake in beating the Bison keeper to give the Huskies their first lead of the match.
The Bisons were quick to answer the home team’s second goal with one of their own. After a long ball into the Huskie end stretched the green and white defenders, the Bisons forced Saskatchewan keeper Cara Santaga far out of the net to challenge. The Huskies nearly cleared the ball, but Bruna Mavignier collected a blocked clearing attempt and deposited it into a wide-open Huskie goal to tie the match at two.
Cerkwoniak’s second goal of the match in the 68th minute would stand as the winner.
Werle finished the game with eight saves in net for the Bisons, while Santaga recorded two for Saskatchewan.
The Huskies will host the Winnipeg Wesmen tomorrow at noon. Manitoba heads south to take on the Regina Cougars Sunday afternoon.