Grant MacEwan holds off late charge in 3-1 Briercrest loss
By Kyle Legouffe
The Briercrest men’s hockey team battled icy road conditions travelling to Edmonton to face the Grant MacEwan University Griffins in a very spirited tilt.
The game showed intensity from both sides and Grant MacEwan came out on top with the 3-1 victory. Briercrest will look to gain their first win of the season tomorrow, as they will face off against the Griffins at Bill Hunter Arena at 3:15 pm. Coach Dalton Stoltz is in his first season behind the Briercrest bench and he is in search of the first ACAC win.
The opening 20 had a slow pace as both teams looked to be feeling each other out. The Griffins had two power play opportunities and were swarming around the crease of Jesse Chenard. Chenard faced 17 shots in the period and was able to come up big a few times to keep the score 0-0. Briercrest was only able to fire three shots towards the Grant MacEwan goal. Briercrest had one power play opportunity but were not able to generate much offence while up a man.
The middle period saw some more intensity as both teams were taking the body. Grant MacEwan was able to capitalize on a power play opportunity as Brennan Gasmo took a hooking minor. The Griffins were able to add another goal to go up by two, but Briercrest was able to cut the lead in half on a beautiful goal scored by Branden Whitehawk as he was the recipient of a nice pass from Manuel Schellenberg. Grant MacEwan out shot Briercrest 13-8 in the period.
The final frame started off well for Briercrest as they came out showing that they were hungry to tie the game. As the period went on Grant MacEwan put on the pressure and was looking strong. Briercrest had two power play opportunities in the period but were not able to generate much in the way of shots, as the Griffins were able to keep the puck out of their end. Chenard was able to keep all the shots out of the net that he faced, but Grant MacEwan added an empty net goal late on the power play as Pierre Landry took an unsportsmanlike penalty. The game ended with the score 3-1 in favour of the Griffins.
Briercrest’s player of the game was Jesse Chenard as he stood on his head and kept his squad in the game and Grant MacEwan’s Jared Crooks got the honour as he added one assist.
The squad will again play the Griffins tomorrow at 3:15 pm at Bill Hunter Arena in Edmonton. Follow along on Facebook on the Briercrest Hockey page (http://www.facebook.com/briercrest.hockey) to get live game updates, as well as http://sportscanada.tv/index.php/ccaatv/acactv/acacmhk to watch live.