Wpg. Free Press: Bisons stampede into U Sports tourney
As the Winnipeg Free Press reports:
The University of Manitoba Bisons will begin the U Sports Women’s Hockey Championship in London, Ont., as a solid favourite to win their first national title.
But the No. 1-ranked Bisons have hardly built their reputation on blowout victories. Head coach Jon Rempel’s squad is as battled-tested as they come.
In fact, the newly crowned Canada West champions are 26-7 overall and have played in an astonishing 22 one-goal games this season, winning 18 times. They have also won six of the eight overtime games they’ve played in 2017-18.
“This group we have right now has been through a crazy amount of tight games and key games, so we definitely have the battle mentality,” fifth-year Manitoba forward Alana Serhan said from London, where the team practised for the second time Wednesday in preparation for Friday’s quarter-final matchup with the Queen’s Gaels.
“We know how to handle stressful, tight situations. Long overtimes, a lot of 1-0 games… it’s certainly something we’ve been through and something we’re prepared to do again this week if we have to.”
The speedy Bisons are also dedicated to defence, and they’ll need to be in top form to contain Queen’s star forward Katrina Manoukarakis, who was the Ontario University Athletics’ player of the year, after scoring 15 goals and 31 points in 30 games. Stephanie Pascal of the Gaels was the OUA’s goaltender of the year, posting a 14-3-3 record in 2017-18.
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