Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Duggan delivers double OT winner, as Huskies defeat REDS 2-1 to extend semifinal series

Duggan delivers double OT winner, as Huskies defeat REDS 2-1 to extend semifinal series

HALIFAX, NS – With the Huskies season on the line, forward Jillian Duggan delivered the game winning goal, 14:54 into double overtime, lifting Saint Mary's to a 2-1 double overtime victory over the UNB REDS in game three of the Atlantic University Sport women's hockey semifinal on Sunday night at the Dauphinee Centre in Halifax.

"It was definitely tough on the road, we played our hardest and had two tough games but couldn't get the win, but it felt great to pull through as a team tonight and everyone was connected," said Duggan post-game.

The do-or-die game three victory extended the AUS best-of-five semifinal series, forcing game four which will be played Monday night at the Dauphinee Centre. GET TICKETS

The first period saw few chances between the two teams, with lots of play in the neutral zone. Early in the period, REDS defender Raine Murdoch (Sherwood, AB) fired a shot from the point that was saved by Huskies goaltender Ridleigh Hansen (Red Deer, AB).

With just under five minutes remaining in the period, Huskies forward Kate Gallant (Brooklin, ON) generated the best scoring opportunity for the home team, as she wrapped around the REDS net, firing a shot that was denied by goaltender Kendra Woodland (Kamloops, BC), with the rebound being cleared away by a REDS defender.

The REDS outshot the Huskies 11-7 in the first period, and the two teams went into intermission with a scoreless tie.

Less than a minute into the second period, the REDS found a go-ahead goal as defender Mackenzie Keenan (Midhurst, ON) received a pass from league MVP Lillian George (Nipissing First Nation), and fired a high shot past a screened Hansen to put the visitors up 1-0, 45 seconds into the second.

The REDS seemed to find some offensive momentum from their goal, peppering shots on Hansen over the next few minutes, but the Huskies netminder was able to turn all attempts away.

It was the Huskies that would find an equalizer as defender Allie Barter (Hammonds Plains, NS) fired a point shot that was redirected into goal by forward Keyara Nelson (Belleville, ON), to tie the game at 1-1, 4:52 into the second period.

The Huskies seemed reenergized by the equalizer, generating several chances but Woodland made quality saves on Huskies forwards Kara MacLean (Antigonish, NS) and Avery Cant (Waterloo, ON).

Not to be outdone, Huskies netminder Ridleigh Hansen made a nice glove save on league-leading scorer Lillian George to keep the game tied at one.

The Huskies line of Keyara Nelson, Kate Gallant and Mackenzie Beggs (Kemptville, ON) continued to generate chances, with Beggs crashing the net for several rebounds, but unable to beat Woodland.

After both teams took penalties, four-on-four action saw open ice and end-to-end play, highlighted by Hansen making a nice save on REDS forward Payton Hargreaves (Whitby, ON).

Moments later, the Huskies got a great opportunity as Nelson and Beggs broke out on a two-on-one, with Nelson cutting back and firing a shot that was turned away by Woodland's blocker at the last moment.

The Huskies outshot the REDS 13-8 in the second period, taking a 20-19 advantage in shots on goal into the intermission, but the two teams remained tied 1-1.

The first 15 minutes of the third period saw very few scoring opportunities, as both teams appeared to be playing it safe, not trying to allow a late go-ahead goal. Saint Mary's had a chance to take the lead with just under four minutes remaining as a REDS turnover ended up on the stick of Huskies forward Gillian Lapierre (Port Coquitlam, BC), but once again, Woodland was in perfect position to make a blocker save.

With 60 minutes of regulation play solving nothing, the two teams headed into a four-on-four overtime period to decide the winner.

Just under two minutes into the overtime period, REDS forward April Reiner was sent to the penalty box for hooking, giving the Huskies a powerplay, but the visitors were able to kill-off the advantage.

Huskies defender Abigial MacKenzie (Stellarton, NS) fired a shot towards the REDS goal that was batted down by Woodland, and Avery Cant had several whacks at the rebound, but the officials quickly blew the whistle indicating that Woodland had covered the puck, much to the dismay of the Saint Mary's bench.

Neither team was able to find a winning goal through 10 minutes of overtime, and the game headed to a second OT period.

Early in the second overtime, Mackenzie Keenan fired a shot that rang off the post. Moments later the Huskies had a chance as Mackenzie Beggs fired a shot that bounced around in front of the REDS net before finally being covered up by Woodland.

Another faceoff in the Huskies zone saw a point shot from REDS defender Lindsay Smith that was stopped by Hansen, with a skirmish breaking out in front of the Huskies goal, perhaps an expected result of over 77 minutes of intense and gritty playoff hockey action.

Tempers continued to flare throughout the period, with veteran lead official Shauna Neary kicking a REDS fan out of the Dauphinee Centre. Moments later, Avery Cant had another quality chance for the Huskies, but Woodland continued her heroics, making her 34th save of the evening.

With just over five minutes remaining in the second overtime, Huskies forward Erin Denny (Eskasoni, NS) poked the puck away in the neutral zone, with Kara MacLean pushing the puck ahead up the left wing, and then cutting back and finding forward Jillian Duggan (Halifax, NS) diving towards the net, where she directed the pass past Woodland to give the Huskies the 2-1 victory in double overtime.

"I was a bit behind at first, so I was just trying catch up and find a lane where Kara could pass me the puck, and I found that lane and she passed me the puck. It was a pretty special moment with all the girls coming to congratulate me," said Duggan post-game.

The Huskies outshot the REDS 40-31 on the night, with Hansen making 30 saves for the win, while Woodland turned away 38 shots in defeat.

The Huskies win forces game four of the best-of-five AUS semifinal series, which will be played Monday, Feb. 26 at 7 p.m. at the Dauphinee Centre. GET TICKETS

Recap by Allan April / Saint Mary's Huskies Athletics
Photos by Eduardo Ibarra / Saint Mary's Huskies Athletics