In the hierarchy of nature, a bear isn't supposed to be able to bend over a dinosaur. Nature freaks will be startled to learn, then, that this implausible scenario happened--yet again--in Edmonton Mar. 5-6.
A masterful pair of performances over the southern rival hockeysaurs have the University of Alberta Golden Bears moving on to face the University of Saskatchewan Huskies in the Canada West Championship series for a shot at another national championship berth. The Prairie Dogs knocked off their wheatland rivals, the University of Regina Cougars, to earn the opportunity to be next in a long line of ass-kickings which the Bears have administered this season.
After entering the series against Alberta believing to a man that this year would be different than their recent failed attempts at knocking off the country's perennial post-secondary powerhouse, the Dinos' hopes came crashing down to earth after a deflating 4-1 loss Friday night.
Led by Canada West hockey Most Valuable Player Ryan Wade and fifth-year senior Kevin Marsh, the Bears' offensive attack was too much for a shell-shocked Donald Choukalous, who played outstanding stopping 40 of 44 shots. Richard Mueller scored the Dinos' only goal of the weekend, as the team would be shut out the next night at a sold out Clare Drake arena.
The Dinos inability to pull off a miracle upset and knock off the Bears may not come as a shock to fans, but is definitely viewed as a major disappointment to a veteran-laden team that had it's sights set on a much better outcome.
"Anything short of making it to nationals will be a huge disappointment for our team," said team captain Sean Robertson before boarding the bus to Edmonton.
Although Robertson will be back to take another run at the title next year, there are a few seniors who have played their last game in a Dinos uniform. Timothy Linberg, Jeffery Yopyk, Sheldon Nedjelski and Ken McKay all saw their varsity careers end without the opportunity to win the last game of the year, something not soon be forgotten.