Dinos successfully skate up icy slope

It was a strong week for the Dinos men’s hockey team as they took three of four possible points from the University of Regina Cougars Nov. 11-12.

On Friday, both the Dinos and Cougars came out with almost no firepower; shots were 7-5 for Regina early on. The only dangerous scoring chance went to the Cougars in the form of a two-on-one, resulting in the lone goal of the first period.

The Cougars jumped out to a two-goal lead shortly into the second, but it didn’t last long. Midway through the period, Dino Andre Blanchette took advantage of a power-play opportunity, getting the puck past Cougar goalie Clint Chalmers. The Cougars answered less an a minute later, with an even-strength goal by Caine Pearpoint.

Fortunately, the third period was a totally different story. Not only did the Dinos dominate the shots-on-goal count, but, more importantly, also dominated the scoreboard. Two goals, scored by Colin McRae and Tyrel Lucas, in the first three minutes erased the Cougars’ lead. The Cougars failed the capitalize on their three man-advantages and the score was 3-3 at the end of regulation and overtime.

Although the Dinos came back to tie the game, Atkinson thought the team could’ve done much better.

“We weren’t happy that we were [down 3-1]. The fact that we didn’t win on Friday night was disappointing,” he said. “Tying and coming back is positive, but we shouldn’t have been in that spot.”

And the team made sure they wouldn’t be in the same spot the next day. The second game turned out to be a Dinos offensive showcase. The Cougars couldn’t stop the Dinos getting the puck on goal. It would’ve been disastrous if not for Chalmers’ strong performance.

In the first period alone, Regina allowed 17 Dinos shots on net. Despite all these chances, the Dinos only managed to score one goal, an even-strength marker by Wade Davis.

As if that period wasn’t bad enough for the Cougars, the second was even more lopsided. The Dinos scored two power-play goals–Blanchette with one and Lucas with the other–to make the game 3-0. They out-shot Regina by a ridiculous count of 20-4 in the second period alone.

Although Regina managed to score a goal on Scott Talbot in the first half of the third period, the Dinos once again out-shot them. Davis put the game away for good when he scored in the last few minutes of the game. He ended up with two goals and two assists for an impressive four points over two games.

“He is one of the keys to our success, no doubt about it,” said Atkinson.

Jarret Lukin picked up four assists, two in each game, bringing his point total to 14 in 10 games. He is the fifth highest point earner among Canada West players, and 11th overall in Canadian Interuniversity Sport.

“We feel he’s going to be a top player in the university league. He brings a very complete game to the table,” Atkinson praised. “In my mind, this league is made for him.”

The Dinos now have a 5-3-2 record and 12 points, good for first place in the Mountain division. They are home in Calgary Nov. 18-19, facing the University of Saskatchewan Huskies. Both games take place in the Father David Bauer Arena at 7 p.m.

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