Cougars grab 5th ACAC title
Women’s hockey team knocks off Griffins in 5-game series
Jonathan Vern McGill
The Mount Royal Cougars overcame the Grant MacEwan Griffins this past weekend, claiming their fifth award for the Alberta Colleges Athletics Conference (ACAC) for women’s hockey in a best-of-five series.
The Cougars had been nearly unbeatable this post-season, led by captain Chrissy Hodgson and coach of the year, Scott Rivett, leading the team to victory in game four 3-0 of the series over the Griffins.
“It’s nice to see the kids come through and get rewarded for their eight months of hard work,” Rivett said after the game to the ACAC. “It’s been a long season. It feels good.”
The Cougars had lost game three in a penalty shot, final score 3-2, but had won the first two games against the Griffins 2-1 and 3-2 the previous weekend.
“It has been a physical series. I thought the officials did a good job of calling what needed to be called, and letting the girls play,” Rivett said.
Many penalties were called, and both teams spent a lot of time playing short-handed or four-on-four, but Rivett said the Cougars’ five-on-five was still strong, even this far into the seasons’ end.
“Both teams wanted it really bad tonight and I thought both teams competed hard. There was a lot of crashing and banging,” Rivett said. Both head coaches said they were proud of their teams for the season.
“In every sport there is always a winner and a loser,” Griffins head coach Lindsay McAlpine said. “That’s why we keep coming back. You search for the feeling they have and you play for the highs and you play through the lows.”
“Of course it doesn’t feel good standing on the other side of it, but I couldn’t walk out of this rink more proud to coach those 20 girls,” McAlpine said.
Rivett has won the ACAC award for coach of the year four times now, and gives credit to his assistant coaching staff, Derek MacLean and Paul Pinel, who have been with him for his seven years at the ACAC, and Carla MacLeod, who has two seasons on Rivett’s team.