Trevor Cox scored the winner in overtime as the Alberta Golden Bears advanced to the gold medal game at the 2018 U SPORTS Cavendish Farms University Cup with a 3-2 win over the Saskatchewan Huskies.
“It’s a tough pill to swallow,” said Huskies captain Kendall McFaull.
The action was quiet for the first 10 minutes. But, at 12:13, Parker Thomas snuck around the back of the net for a tap in goal off a goal mouth scramble to put the Huskies up 1-0. The Golden Bears put the pressure on to start the second with multiple chances in close on the Huskies net. Their forecheck held the Huskies without a shot until the midway point of the period.
The Huskies bounced back in the second half of the period. With Alberta a man short, Alex Forsberg got control of a bouncing puck in the slot and put it top corner on Zach Sawchenko to make it 2-0 Huskies with just over two minutes left. With the Golden Bears on the power play, Luke Philp finished off a pretty passing play to cut the Huskies lead to one 6:41 into the third.
“The momentum swung in the third period with a couple power plays, that’s how a game goes,” said Huskies head coach Dave Adolph.
Another power play in the final five minutes of play allowed the Golden Bears to pull even. Graeme Craig shot a puck that hit the glove of Taran Kozun and bounced into the net to tie the game, sending it to overtime.
“I think we learned a little bit about ourselves today,” said Alberta head coach Serge Lajoie.
Shots at the end of regulation were 32-21. In extra time, Stephane Legault forced a turnover at the blue line sending Cox down the right wing. He put a wrist shot past Kozun’s right pad to complete the comeback, just over three minutes into the OT.
Zach Sawchenko had 20 saves in the Alberta net while Kozun made 33 saves for the Huskies. The Golden Bears went 2-6 on the power play while the Huskies went 1-2.
“We don’t want (to) put ourselves in that spot, but it just goes to show the character that our team has,” said Fram.
The Huskies will play the UNB Varsity Reds for the bronze medal on Sunday at 9:00 a.m. ET / 6:00 a.m. PT.
The Golden Bears advance to play the StFX X-Men in the final on Sunday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. ET / 10:00 a.m. PT.
“We didn’t come here for silver, we didn’t come here for bronze,” said Lajoie.
Players of the Game
SASKATCHEWAN: Parker Thomas
ALBERTA: Trevor Cox