B.C. OFFENCE SHINES AGAINST MANITOBA
MORDEN, Man. – Sarah Paul (West Kelowna, B.C.) scored two goals and added an assist and Katie Chan (Richmond, B.C.) generated a goal and two helpers to power British Columbia to a 5-1 win over Manitoba to close out action Wednesday at the 2019 National Women’s Under-18 Championship.
Anne Cherkowski (Coldstream, B.C.) and Kate Klassen (Chilliwack, B.C.) also glimmered in the tilt with a goal and an assist apiece.
B.C. dominated puck possession throughout the entirety of the 60-minute affair as its skaters forced Manitoba goaltender Megan Relf (Oakbank, Man.) to face 51 shots, while Kayla Munro (North Vancouver, B.C.) was only required to make 14 saves on the pathway to improving her team’s record to 1-1.
Kylie Lesuk (Oakbank, Man.) replied with the lone goal for Manitoba, which enters the final day of the prelims with an 0-2 record.
While B.C. largely forced the issue on the ice, it was the host Manitobans who got off to the more dynamic start; it only took Lesuk 85 seconds to excite the 600 fans in the stands with her backhand goal from the slot.
B.C. responded with potent chance after potent chance, but Relf turned aside all 17 shots she faced in the opening frame.
The offensive dam erupted with two goals 19 seconds apart in the second half of the second period. Paul scored the equalizer at 12:31, one-timing a silky centring pass from Alexis Bedier (Lake Country, B.C.), and Cherkowski forged her team ahead at 12:50 with a perfect tip of Chan’s pass off the rush. B.C. besieged Manitoba with 23 shots in the second while yielding only six.
The offensive momentum carried over into the third period as B.C. pulled away with three goals. Paul gave B.C. insurance nearly five minutes into the stanza with a wrist shot from the left circle, Chan zipped a low drive into the cage with 3:45 left on the clock and Klassen capped the scoring 11 seconds after that.
The shots were 11-3 for B.C. in the third period.
B.C. remains in the hunt for a spot in the semifinals. A win over the undefeated Ontario Blue on Thursday (1 p.m. CT) will be required to bolster its chances. Manitoba closes its preliminary round against Quebec (7 p.m. CT).