Revenge will have to wait for another day. The University of Calgary Dinos women's hockey team played a committed and determined pair of games versus local rivals, the Mount Royal College Cougars, last weekend. The team ousted them from the playoffs last season and the hockeysaurs were, once again, unable to work any upset miracles. The Dinos dropped their first game of the weekend split versus the much stronger Cougars, losing 3-1 at Centennial Arenas and were unable to work any comeback magic the night after like they did versus the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Trojans the weekend prior. Instead of battling back to grab a win on home ice at the Olympic Oval, the Dinos only gave 109 per cent and were overwhelmed by MRC, losing a lopsided 5-1 thrashing Sat. night.
Mount Royal proved to be the superior team and had the Dinos on their heels all game long, controlling the puck and stifling the U of C every chance they had. The Dinos did everything in their power to support their efforts, but the Cougars proved to be too much to handle, causing the lady hockeysaurs to lose their team focus and fall apart.
"It wasn't a team effort," said rookie forward Cassandra Atkins. "We didn't play as a team, so we didn't win as a team. There were some great individual efforts but it wasn't enough."
Discipline issues continue to hamper the Dinos as costly penalties put the team in an early hole that they were unable to climb out of. MRC jumped out to a 2-0 less than ten minutes into the game, converting on their two first power play chances minutes apart from each other at 6:18 and 8:23. Both goals came from Mount Royal's relentless swarming of bodies in front of and around the Dinos net, a tactic they successfully employed all game long. It resulted in many good screen and rebound chances, which were the causes of all their goals.
The Dinos managed to settle themselves down after giving up the lead early, putting some pressure back on the Cougars. They cut the lead in half midway through the second with an aggressive play by forward Charlotte Chanasyk and defender Caitlin O'Hara. Chanasyk surged past a Cougar defender and fired a wrist shot at goalie Amanda Squire that was stopped, but O'Hara was rewarded for her hard work following the play, firing the rebound home before Squire could cover the puck or get back into position.
Two to one was as close as the Dinos came to getting back into the game, as Mount Royal took full control from thereon in. They scored another deflection goal late in the second, erasing any progress or momentum the Dinos had gained in the period. The Cougars never looked back, scoring two more goals in the first three minutes of the third period to take a commanding 5-1 lead, which they held until the final whistle. The loss leaves the Dinos tied for fourth with a record of 3-5-0, while Mount Royal holds onto their spot in first at 6-1-1.
The Dinos now have their next weekend off before heading back into action versus the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology Ooks Nov. 16 and 17. Second-year forward Shannon Davidson said that, despite the losses this weekend, the team has made big strides so far and looks forward to the next couple of weeks of free time as a way to come together and focus on achieving their goal.
"Our goal this year is to be number one, but we still have a long way to go," said Davidson hopefully. "We need to step it up as a team and we will only go up from here."