Cougars and Thunderbirds clash in round one of the Canada West playoffs

Cougars and Thunderbirds clash in round one of the Canada West playoffs

GAME DATE: Friday February 19 vs. UBC
LOCATION: Flames Community Arenas – 7:00pm MST

GAME DATE: Saturday February 20 vs. UBC
LOCATION: Flames Community Arenas – 7:00pm MST

GAME DATE: Sunday February 20 vs. UBC
LOCATION: Flames Community Arenas – 7:00pm MST (if necessary)

HEADLINES:

The Cougars missed their shot at a first round bye last weekend and are now forced to play a three game series with the UBC Thunderbirds. Despite having 11 more points than the Thunderbirds, UBC has always proven to be a tough matchup for the Cougars and this weekend will be no different. Mount Royal is looking to avenge last season's playoff loss to the Dinos that had them one win away from nationals.

THE SERIES:

The Cougars are 6-6-4 lifetime against the Thunderbirds. This season UBC claimed the first two games in Vancouver but Mount Royal won both of their matchups at Flames Community Arenas.

(3) MOUNT ROYAL COUGARS (17-8-3)

The Cougars are 8-4 in the winter semester and have locked up third place in the conference for the second straight season. The Cougars dropped two straight to the Alberta Golden Bears but were unable to field a full lineup. It looks like this week, most of their top players should be good to go against the Thunderbirds. Tyler Fiddler has led the team in scoring all season but it has been Cam Maclise who has carried the offensive load in the second semester. Maclise has 29 points in 28 games and has just fully begun to hit his stride. Colin Cooper will likely get the nod in goal for Mount Royal. The sensational rookie is second in the conference in goals against (2.30) and fourth in save percentage (0.913%).

(6) UBC THUNDERBIRDS (11-13-4)

The Thunderbirds are limping into the playoffs after an impressive start to the season. UBC is 3-9 since the holiday break, suffering losses to both the Regina and Lethbridge in the process. They did however beat the Alberta Golden Bears in their own rink in early January. The Thunderbirds are not extremely deep at forward but their top three of Bardaro, Lockhart and Vetterl are as good as anyone in the league. Anthony Bardaro is tied for 12th in league scoring, racking up 27 points in just 26 games this season. In goal it is anyone's guess as to who Head Coach Adam Shell with go with on Friday night. Matt Hewitt and Eric Williams have nearly identical stats and have each appeared in 14 games this season. Hewitt boasts slightly better numbers with a 6-6-2 record and a 2.53 goals against average.