The weekend the Dinos women's hockey team has been preparing for all season has finally arrived. The Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference quarter-finals begun Thu., Feb. 16, with the Dinos up against the third ranked SAIT Trojans. After playing some of their best games in record weeks, the Dinos have the potential to peak at just the right time and have a surprising playoff run.
The Dinos met the NAIT Ooks in their final regular season games Feb. 10-11. After suffering a 3-0 loss in Edmonton on Friday the Dinos weren't about to roll over and die.
On Saturday night, with a home ice advantage, the Dinos came out strong, looking for redemption. A hard-fought first period ended with no score. Then, early in the second, the Ooks caught the Dinos off guard, slipping one in past goaltender Katie Urness. The Dinos came back and evened things up later in the period with a goal from rookie Ashley Hatch.
At the end of the second, the game was still tied at one. Midway into the final period the Ooks struck again, putting the Dinos down by one. And while the Dinos fought hard through the rest of the game, the lack of scoring talent on the team left them with another loss, bringing their record for the season to a disappointing 2-18. Once again the Dinos goaltending show was amazing. Urness had a 96 per cent save average, turning away 43 shots that night.
"They had a really good second period, but just couldn't do it in the third," said Dino superfan Bill Spackman, who has been cheering for the ladies all season.
Hopefully the Dinos will carry the positives from the weekend into their battle with SAIT in the quarter-finals. And hopefully, all their early morning practices and two-a-day workouts will pay off...Hopefully.
The Dinos are at SAIT Arena Thu., Feb. 16 at 7:30 p.m., at Centennial Arena Fri., Feb 17 at 8:45 p.m. and, if necessary back at SAIT Sat., Feb. 18 at 6 p.m.