Bisons defeat Cougars 4-1 in Winnipeg

Photo: Adrian Shellard
Photo: Adrian Shellard

WINNIPEG- The University of Manitoba Bisons men's hockey team proved victorious in an entertaining affair over the visiting University of Mount Royal Cougars by a score of 4-1 on Friday, Oct 27 at Wayne Fleming Arena in Winnipeg.

"It was a good team win, we had contribution in different ways from a lot of different guys" said Bisons Head Coach Mike Sirant after the game.

With the win, Manitoba improves their record to 4-3-0 on the season, while Mount Royal drops to 3-3-1.

Michael St. Croix led the way for the Bisons with his first two goals of the 2017-18 season and notched an assist to finish up with three points and was also named the first star of the game.

"I thought that you could tell right from the opening shift that he really came to play tonight and really competed hard" Sirant said about St. Croix's performance.

Both teams were able to generate high quality scoring chances throughout the first period but it was the home side who were able to strike first, with Adam Henry burying his second goal of the year off a beautiful feed from Michael St. Croix at nine minutes of the first period.

Penalties would prove costly for the Bisons late in the period as Mount Royal was able to capitalize on a 5 on 3 power play with just 2:24 remaining in the first period as Connor Rankin netted his first goal of the season with the lone assist going to Kord Pankewicz.

The second period saw the physical play start to ramp up for both teams in what was a back and forth second frame. The Cougars were dominant and hemmed Manitoba in their own zone for much of the first half of the second, but the Bisons relentless forecheck found its legs in the later minutes of the period, putting sustained pressure on MRU.

The wave of momentum was capped off by a goal for the Bisons when Michael St. Croix scored his first goal as a Bison from Zach Franko to give Manitoba a 2-1 lead.

Manitoba would carry the one goal advantage into the third period.

The two teams kept up the back and forth play throughout the third period, which resulted in quality scoring chances for both teams with Manitoba capitalizing on a tally from St. Croix from Lucas Skrumeda late in the third period. Spriggs stood tall between the pipes keeping the lead in tact for Manitoba despite numerous breakdowns and turnovers in the defensive zone which resulted in opportunities for the Cougars.

The Bisons would add an empty net goal with 17 seconds remaining in the game from Liam Bilton.

Manitoba and Mount Royal will meet once again on Saturday, Oct 28 at 7:30 p.m. CT at Wayne Fleming Arena in Winnipeg.