Edmonton, AB – The UBC Okanagan Heat women’s team dropped their season-opener on Friday night in Edmonton against the MacEwan Griffins by a score of 3-0. The Griffins scored half-way through the first half and would put the game away with two quick goals early in the second half.
The Heat have started their conference schedule on the road the past four seasons with Friday night being the first loss in their season opener. The last two years the Heat were victorious in Lethbridge (2-1) and in Winnipeg (1-0) in 2015. September of 2014 they tied 0-0 at UNBC their opponent this Sunday.
Coach’s thoughts: UBC Okanagan’s head coach Craig Smith was extremely positive and confident about his team after the game “I was pleased with some of the stuff the girls have done. We asked them to take risks and that’s what happens. So, at the end of the day, that’s on me, that’s not on the girls”
Rookie watch: First year midfielder Erica Lampert and college transfer Anastazia Ziros, who played last season in the PACWEST winning that conference’s Rookie of the Year award, made their Heat debuts in the starting lineup versus the Griffins. Also debuting for UBCO were Jillian Hunt and Kacee Ougden who came off the bench in the second half.
Heat player of the game: Third year science student Ally Ferronato was given the game MVP for the Heat after she had the team’s best chance of the game in the closing minutes but was denied by Griffins goalkeeper Emily Burns. The only real test Burns faced on Friday night.
Inside the numbers: The Heat did not have a first half shot attempt or shot on target compared to five shots on goal on nine attempts for the home squad. Heat goal keeper Francesca Balletta made six saves for the visitors including one from short range in the 79th minute off Griffins attacker Meagan Lemoine.
Up next: The Heat (0-1-0) will travel to Prince George to play the Timberwolves (1-0-0) on Sunday at 12 p.m. PDT. The Griffins will play host to the Thompson Rivers University Wolf Pack on Sunday at 12 p.m. PDT in Edmonton.