OSWALD’S WINNER SENDS MANITOBA TO GOLD MEDAL GAME
HUNTSVILLE, Ont. – Talk about a crazy game. In a span of three minutes, eight seconds the fans and players at the Canada Summit Centre had their emotions taken for a ride.
With 6:34 remaining in regulation, Ontario Blue’s Emily Reid (Whitby, Ont./Whitby, PWHL) – her team shorthanded – used her speed to get past two defenders and send herself on a breakaway from centre ice. She beat goalie Kerigan Dowhy (The Pas, Man./Shaftesbury Academy, CAHS) high stick side to make it 1-0.
With 6:19 remaining in regulation, Manitoba’s Savannah Rennie (East St. Paul, Man./Shaftesbury Academy, CAHS) – her team still on the power play – found her way down low, where she put in a deflected puck from the side of the net to tie the game.
With 3:26 remaining in regulation, Manitoba’s Sheridan Oswald (MacGregor, Man./Central Plains, MFMHL) – the top scorer of the 2015 National Women’s Under-18 Championship – deflected in a point shot by Jalyn Elmes (Brandon, Man./Yellowhead, MFMHL) to make it 2-1.
Rennie added an insurance marker into an empty net with 33 seconds left in regulation to seal the win, and with it, Manitoba’s ticket to the gold medal game.
It marks the second time the team has advanced to the championship game of the event.
Dowhy finished with 21 saves in picking up the win. Kelli Rowswell (Winnipeg, Man./Balmoral Hall, JWHL) added an assist on Rennie’s first goal.
Nicole Cece (Oakville, Ont./Oakville, PWHL) made 17 saves for Ontario Blue.
One of the big questions coming into the day’s first semifinal was how Manitoba would rebound from a tough loss the night before, when it lost a three-goal third period lead and eventually fell in overtime to Ontario Red.
It was clearly a new day for the team, as after a cautious start the team opened up its game, showing it had learned its lesson in the previous day’s hard defeat.
Ontario Blue had its chances to score earlier and perhaps change the complexion of the game. Twice, Manitoba was called for late-period penalties that extended into the next frame. Both times the team extinguished Ontario Blue’s advantage.
Ontario Blue will now play for bronze for the second time in its tournament history.