EDMONTON – Cam Gotaas is the MacEwan Athletics first star of the week after leading the men's hockey team to two huge road wins on the first weekend of the 2018-19 regular season.
Making his regular season debut as the Griffins' new captain, Gotaas not only got his team ready to play at a high level in 9-1 and 11-1 wins, but he totaled four goals and three assists in doing so.
Other athletes recognized this week include second star Jamie Erickson of the women's soccer team and third star Jordyn Reimer of the women's hockey team.
Erickson makes her second appearance of the season on the three stars list, having previously been named third star on Sept. 4, while both Gotaas and Reimer are being honoured for the first time in 2018-19.
1st star: Cam Gotaas, F, men's hockey
Sherwood Park, AB, third-year, Commerce
Making his regular season debut as the new captain of the MacEwan Griffins, the veteran forward produced seven points in two games, leading his squad to two huge road wins at Briercrest in Caronport, Sask.
In Friday's 9-1 victory that kicked off the season for both teams, Gotaas not only prepared his team to play the right way, he scored a natural hat-trick – netting MacEwan's third, fourth and fifth goals of the game from the 11:11 mark of the first period to the 2:04 mark of the second. He later added an assist in the rout.
In Saturday's 11-1 win over Briercrest, Gotaas was again on point, scoring MacEwan's eighth goal of the contest at the 4:42 mark of the third period, while adding assists on their sixth and 10th tallies.
As a result of his offensive explosion in the first weekend of the season, Gotaas leads the ACAC in goals (4) and is tied for the conference lead in points (7).
Gotaas leads the Griffins into their home opener on Friday vs. Portage (7 p.m., Downtown Community Arena).
2nd star: Jamie Erickson, D, women's soccer
Edmonton, AB, fourth-year, Science
A major reason why the Griffins remain in contention for top spot in the Pacific Division with a 7-2-1 record, the rock solid centre back consistently repels the attacks of the conference's top strikers.
Erickson has played every minute of every one of MacEwan's 10 games so far this season, but Friday's 3-2 win over UNBC might have been her best … offensively, at least.
She scored twice and added an assist in a dominant effort – a game that was highlighted as Canada West's stat line of the week.
Erickson headed home the game's opening goal off a corner kick in the 16th minute, then set up MacEwan's second goal seven minutes later when her free kick was booted home by Salma Kamel.
The veteran defender added her second of the match on another header off an 83rd-minute corner kick, which proved to be the game-winner.
Defensively, Erickson led the Griffins in backline blocked shots and defensive interceptions.
For the season, she is tied for 10th in Canada West with four goals and is tied for 17th in points, despite primarily playing defence.
Erickson and the Griffins are on the road again this weekend with games at Lethbridge and Calgary on Saturday and Sunday.
Jamie Erickson was a force on both ends of the pitch for the Griffins against UNBC over the weekend (Chris Piggott photo).
3rd star: Jordyn Reimer, F, women's hockey
Winnipeg, MB, fourth-year, Arts
While the two-time defending ACAC champion Griffins dominated SAIT in their home opener last Friday – outshooting them 44-19 – they relied on Reimer to score the only goal of the game to secure a 1-0 win.
The fourth-year forward backhanded a rebound past SAIT goaltender Elisha Oswald midway through the first period and the goal stood up as the game-winner.
In Saturday's rematch in Calgary, Reimer was again one of the team's top players on both ends of the ice. Not only did she play a crucial role on the penalty killing unit, she also stepped up on the powerplay, netting an assist in a 5-2 win.
Reimer and the Griffins head into a home-and-home series against Olds this weekend, with Saturday's game at home (6 p.m., Downtown Community Arena).
Teammates help Jordyn Reimer (#9) celebrate her first period goal against SAIT in last Friday's home opener (Matthew Jacula photo).