Women’s hockey: Ready for revenge
The goal is simple.
In their last season playing Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference hockey before Mount Royal University makes the switch to Canada West play, the Cougars women’s hockey team looks to go all the way.
“Every year we head into (the season) with the mindset of winning a championship and with this being our last year in the ACAC, it would be pretty special to go out on top,” said head coach Scott Rivet.
In a stunner last season, the Cougars lost only one regular season game, but were swept by the SAIT Trojans 4-2, 5-2 and 4-0 to lose out on the bid for their fifth ACAC Championship.
This season, the Cougars will be looking to dominate their opponents once again with 10 returning players and 14 new faces.
“We were able to identify some of our needs for the year and we were able to go out and fill those spots,” Rivet said.
“Everyone brings something a little different but all extremely important to the success of our team,” he explained. “It’s going to take some time and patience, but we like the mix this season.”
Included in the mix of new players, are three teammate forwards from the Midget Triple-A Saskatoon Stars: Kacy Smith, Ellen Lind and Jade Osadchuk.
Smith had 20 points in 28 games last season while Smith had 19 and Osadchuk had 16 points in 27 games.
The trio should be great for the team offensively, but Rivet explained it’s the back end that will help determine the Cougars women’s team success.
“Any coach will tell you (a team) needs to be strong defensively,” he said. “If we are strong without the puck, I think it will allow us to spend more time on the attack.”
As far as competition this season, Rivet said things are pretty even in the ACAC, so it’s hard to nail down a major rivalry.
“On any given night, anyone has a chance to win, so it really pushes you to be at your best every night,” he said. “SAIT enters the season as defending champs, so I would have to say they probably are the team to beat headed into the year.”
The Cougars have a busy pre-season facing varsity squads including the University of Saskatchewan, University of Lethbridge and the University of Alberta before they face off against the Trojans for their season and home opener Oct. 14 at Flames Community Arenas.