Hockey Martlets hang on to edge Carabins; extend win streak to 25
Katia Clement-Heydra scored twice, including the game-winner as No.1-ranked McGill skated to a hard-fought 5-4 road victory over the No-3-Montreal Carabins in women's hockey at Arena CEPSUM, Friday.
The win improved McGill's record to 19-0 on the season and extended their win streak over CIS teams to 25 games, dating back to last year.
The Martlets, who were outshot 24-22, never trailed in the game, leading 1-0 after the opening period, extending that to 3-0 in the second and entering the final period with a 3-2 advantage. In the final stanza, the Martlets again took a stranglehold 5-2 lead but let the Carabins battled back with a pair to make for a hairy finish.
"We let them back in the game twice and it was just a case of us not managing the puck well when we got up by a few goals, " said McGill head coach Peter Smith. "We took some risks that we didn't need to take and they're a good hockey team. They're not going to back off, they're physical, they play tough and it was just a question of us not pushing the puck north when we needed to do so. It was a good game and there were lots of good lessons for our team to learn. We can't back off like we did."
Clement-Heydra, a third-year forward from St. Bruno de Montarville, Que., opened the scoring with a shorthanded effort at 15:47 of the first stanza, then broke open a 3-2 affair with the winning tally at 13:14 of the final period with her CIS-leading 24th goal of the season. She needs one marker in her final game to break the RSEQ single-season goal scoring record that she now shares with former teammate Ann-Sophie Bettez, who tallied 24 in 2008-09.
"Katia has been one of our most consistent players, game in and game out," said Smith. "The puck's going in for her and when you see someone work as hard as she does in practice and it works out for her in games, it's very rewarding for both her as a player but also for the coaching staff."
McGill appeared to be in cruise control when second-period markers by rookie Gabrielle Davidson (15th) of Pte. Claire, Que., and senior Kim Ton-That (2nd) of Beaconsfield, Que., were scored nine seconds apart to put them ahead 3-0. But the Carabins struck for two goals in 43 seconds from the sticks of Kim Deschenes (17th) of St. Quentin, N.B., and Marion Allemoz (3rd), a native of France.
Defenceman Elizabeth Hillier of Edmonton scored at 32 seconds of the final period to re-establish McGill's two-goal cushion. It was the sophomore's first career goal in 50 games overall with the Martlets. After Clement-Heydra made it 5-2, the Carabins awoke from their slumber with another marker from Alemoz (shorthanded) at 16:35 and one by Casandra Dupuis of Sherbrooke at 17:12.
Netminder Taylor Salisbury kicked aside 20 of 24 shots for the win. The senior from Surrey, B.C., improved to 12-0 on the season and 40-12-1 lifetime with the Martlets.
The Carabins started back-up Sarah Mailloux, a freshman from La Sarre, Que., but she was yanked at 5:15 of the second period after surrendering three goals on just eight shots. Elodie Rousseau-Sirois of Pohenegamook, Que., took over and saved 12 of 14 shots but took the loss as her record tumbled to 9-5.
McGill, which sits atop the RSEQ conference standings with a 19-0 record, will attempt to register a perfect season for the fifth time in school history when they play host to cellar-dwelling Concordia (2-16-1) on Saturday at 4 p.m. McGill is gunning for a perfect 20-0 season, which would match the RSEQ record for wins that they established in 2009-10 and equaled in 2010-11.
The Martlets improved to 26-1 lifetime against the Carabins, who finished their regular season in second place at 15-5-0. Montreal will meet third-place Ottawa (6-9-4) in an RSEQ best-of-three semifinal next week.
MARTLET MURMURS: Clement-Heydra is five goals shy of the CIS single-season goal-scoring record (29) set by Moncton's Marie-Eve Provost in 2009-10... Melodie Daoust collected one assist and has won the CIS scoring race with a 19-33-52 record in 19 games and one contest left to play.... Her closest rivals are already in playoffs... She needs two points in her final game to tie the RSEQ single-season points record set by McGill's Ann-Sophie Bettez in 2008-09... Daoust's 33 assists are a Quebec conference single-season record, breaking the mark of 30 set by Bettez that same season... The CIS assist record is 38, set by Alberta's Tarin Podloski in 24 games during the 2008-09 campaign... Podloski also owns the CIS points record with 61 that season.
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