Through three games to start 2019, it’s been all Diamond Energy Female Midget AAA Wildcats.
The Wildcats increased their brief winning streak to a third game last night on the road, edging the Melville Prairie Fire 3-2.
Both teams were held off the board through the first frame, with Swift Current opening scoring just under three minutes into the second.
Captain Taylor Lind took a feed from Brooklyn Rublee to put the Wildcats up one – a mark they’d add to under three minutes later.
On the powerplay, forward Carissa Hogan was set up by Lind and Maddy McCleary for her fifth of the season.
However, the Prairie Fire were able to work their way back into the game.
Megan Hayhurst scored on the powerplay with six minutes remaining in the second period to cut Swift’s lead to one. Then, Allison Hayhurst put one home unassisted just over seven minutes into the third to tie things up.
"We kind of got into a track meet for two periods where we weren't controlling the puck, we were throwing it away and turning it over,” said Wildcats head coach Terry Pavely. “It was back and forth - probably a fun hockey game to watch as a fan, but we didn't really establish our style of play until the third period."
In what was a dominant third period for the Wildcats, it didn’t take long for them to jump back ahead, as Hogan found Lind, who found the back of the net just 1:38 later for the eventual game-winner.
"That was really the turning point. They tied it up and we responded really well. The next shift we came out and scored. That was really where we took control.”
In the impressive final frame, Swift Current outshot the Prairie Fire 17-9, logging a ton of puck possession in the offensive zone.
"They tried to get their goalie pulled, and they couldn't get the puck out of their end for the last two-and-a-half minutes. That's just because we played the right way. That was important for us to really establish that down the stretch. For us to be able to really neutralize them and not let them get the opportunity to let them pull their goalie, it was kind of the exclamation point on the third period."
The Wildcats outshot the Prairie Fire 40-31 in the game, while going 1-for-4 on the man-advantage.
Stopping 29 pucks, Amaya Giraudier picked up her third-straight win in net for Swift Current. Over the win streak, the product of Assiniboia carries a 1.67 goals-against-average, and .932 save-percentage.
Recording two goals and an assist in the game, Lind has now recorded a torrid five goals and ten points so far in the month of January.
She, along with fellow U18 Team Sask teammate Carissa Hogan (1 G, 1 A) had the long multi-point games for Swift.
Their head coach spoke on what's been stellar play, especially as of late:
Now at 9-9-0-1, the Wildcats and Prairie Fire (6-9-2-1) face off for the final time, before Melville drops down to the Female Midget AA level for next season.
Pavely spoke on the team’s gameplan ahead of the Sunday afternoon tilt:
Puck drop in the weekend finale is 1 p.m.