Saturday, March 18, 2017

2nd Period Explosion Propels Huskies Over X-Men

The #6 seeded and Canada West runner-up Saskatchewan Huskies erupted for 8 goals - including 6 in the middle period - in an 8-0 demolition over the #2 seeded and AUS champion St. FX X-Men this afternoon at the AUC. With the win the Huskies book a date with the Varsity Reds in tomorrow afternoon's gold medal game while the X-Men will battle the Acadia Axemen in the bronze medal contest

- The X-Men looked like a team that had played a game the night before throughout the contest as the Huskies constantly beat them to loose pucks, won battles all over the ice, and generally looked like the quicker and fresher team. Saskatchewan jumped ahead 4:29 into the game when Jesse Forsberg got around a defender and received a nice saucer pass just inside the X-Men blue-line, going in all alone and beating goaltender Chase Marchand with a nice move in tight. The Huskies would hold the 1-0 lead until intermission after out-shooting St. FX 8-7 in the period.

- It all fell apart for the X-Men in the 2nd period. Saskatchewan struck for goals at 1:54 (Levi Cable), 4:29 (Carson Stadnyk), 10:17 (Logan McVeigh), 12:32 (Parker Thomas), 18:38 (Wyatt Johnson), and 19:57 (Connor Gay) to shock pretty much everyone in the building and build a commanding 7-0 cushion after 40 minutes. Shots were 12-9 for Saskatchewan in the period.

- The Huskies added another goal at 4:50 of the 3rd period when McVeigh got his second of the game, this one on the power play, to make it 8-0. They had a chance to make things even worse when they received a five minute power play after X-Men defenceman Max Iafrate decided to blatantly elbow a Saskatchewan player in the face and then, seconds later, cross-check another up high. The Huskies seemed content to just kill the clock at this point of the game more than anything and were held scoreless the rest of the way. The X-Men had a flurry of chances in the final minutes but were unable to spoil Jordon Cooke's shutout bid. Shots in the period were 10 apiece.

- Saskatchewan was 2 for 6 on the power play. The X-Men were 0 for 5.

- Shots were 30-26 for the Huskies.

- Levi Cable and Craig Duininck were named the player's of the game.

- Cooke becomes the first goaltender since Travis Fullerton in 2011 to post back-to-back shutouts at the University Cup.

- AUS goaltender of the year Chase Marchand gave up 5 goals on 16 shots in 32:32 of action before giving away to Brandon Hope, who surrendered 3 goals on 14 shots the rest of the way.

- Attendace was 2774.

- This was the most lopsided game at the University Cup since the Huskies pounded Windsor 9-0 at the 2014 tournament in Saskatoon.

- Saskatchewan moves on to their second championship game since 2014 where they will face the Varsity Reds. The Huskies will be searching for their second University Cup in school history. They captured their lone title in 1983 in Moncton. Game time is 1PM and will be broadcast live on Sportsnet 360.

- The X-Men will try to regroup for tomorrow's bronze medal game against Acadia. Game time is 9:30AM.