Griffins pelt Trojans with 57 shots, seal 5-1 win with three late third period goals

Rookie Shyla Kirwer had a goal and an assist to lead the Griffins to a 5-1 win over SAIT on Friday night (Matthew Jacula photo).
Rookie Shyla Kirwer had a goal and an assist to lead the Griffins to a 5-1 win over SAIT on Friday night (Matthew Jacula photo).

MacEwan Athletics

EDMONTON – With contributions from five different goal scorers, the MacEwan Griffins beat the SAIT Trojans 5-1 in Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference women's hockey action at the Downtown Community Arena on Friday night.

For a while, it was looking like another one of those nights where the puck just wouldn't go in as the Griffins pelted SAIT goaltender Elisha Oswald with 41 shots in the first two periods and only had two goals to show for it.

But after the Trojans snuck within one on a powerplay marker from Ashton Holmes 7:37 into the third period, their finishing touch woke up. MacEwan scored three times in five minutes to put the game out of reach.

"In Griff fashion, the game could have been a lot more goals for us than it was," said head coach Lindsay McAlpine of a familiar issue the team has had at times this season. "We definitely dominated them.

"It was nice that in the end we saw our offensive chances go in the net. It took a wakeup call where they scored a goal to make it 2-1 in a game that was very unbalanced at that point," she continued. "It was still a 2-1 game and our girls responded very well.

"Within the next shift, we came down and got a goal and then two more after that – forcing SAIT to call a timeout and then we just had control from there."

Raven Beazer opened the scoring for MacEwan midway through the first period when she went wide on the SAIT defence and buried a back-hander.

Rookie Shyla Kirwer beat Oswald from the high slot in the final minute of the first before the scoring dried up.

That is until SAIT pulled to within one in the third and Jordyn Reimer took a dish down low from Kirwer and planted it five-hole.

Carley Jewell and Chantal Ricker went in alone 2-on-0 with 7:15 left in the contest with Ricker burying her teammate's one-time pass under the bar.

Rookie Jayme Doyle put the finishing touches on the victory, scoring a gritty rebound goal off Jill MacWilliam's shot with 6:08 left.

It was MacWilliam's first game back from injuries since Nov. 2.

"She's a nice addition to our lineup," said McAlpine of the third-year forward who has eight points in 10 games this season.

She also praised rookies Kirwer (two points) and Doyle (one goal) for their contributions.

"Again, it's not shocking that either of them is contributing offensively, but it's nice to see that they are at this point of the season," said McAlpine. "Jayme Doyle – that's probably the strength of her play. Shyla is more of a defensive specialist, but she has a really great hockey IQ and a great touch in front of the net. They put goals away when we needed them tonight."

Sandy Heim stopped 17 of 18 for the Griffins.

The win moves the Griffins to 13-3-1-0 on the season, now just a point behind NAIT (13-2-2-0) for top spot in the ACAC after the Ooks lost to Red Deer College 3-2 in overtime on Friday. SAIT falls to 4-13-0-0.