Cougars clubs return from Mac's

It was a tough week for both the Cariboo Cougars and the Northern Cougars Female Major Midget squad last week at the prestigious Mac’s Midget AAA Hockey Tournament in Calgary.

The Northern Female Cougars, with Williams Lake’s Tessa Hare, Victoria Byer and Chantelle Beadman-Rolph on the team, finished the tournament with no wins, three losses and a tie.

Colton Thomas and Chase Dubois, who play for the Cariboo Cougars of the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League, wound up with no wins and four losses at the event.

On the girls’ side the Northern Cougars opened with a 1-1 draw against the Winnipeg Ice. Byer chipped in an assist on the Cougars’ only goal.

Game two saw the Northern Cougars face the Calgary Flyers, coming out on the wrong side of a 3-2 score. The Cougars grabbed an early two-goal in the first period with goals from Hunter Mosher and Beadman-Rolph, before the Flyers potted three in a row to seal the deal.

Next, the Northern Cougars met the Swift Current Wildcats.

“[We] started the game fast with two power play goals from Sage Desjardins and Madison Fjellstrom, assists going to Taylor Back and Byer, with two,” said Northern Cougars manager Scott Forrest.

Again, however, the team let the lead slip away for the second straight game as Swift Current potted four consecutive unanswered goals before adding an empty netter in the 5-2 win. Byer was named the game star in the loss.

“In our fourth and final game we were challenged against the Edmonton Thunder, ranked No. 2 in Alberta,” Forrest said. “Knowing this was going to be a tough game the coaching staff wanted to get a solid 60 minutes out of the team — something they hadn’t done all tournament.”

Edmonton, however, came out flying, skating to an early 3-0 lead. The Northern Cougars would settle down in the second period with a goal from Jayden Malgunas, with the assist going to Hare, to cut the deficit to two goals.

Edmonton would score a late goal in the second period, and another in the third, to take a 5-1 win.

“Even though [we] lost 5-1 this game was probably the most complete team effort we had for 60 minutes throughout the tournament,” he said, noting the game star went to Hare for her efforts.

“The team gained much-needed experience from this tournament and are looking forward to the Super weekend in Burnaby on Jan. 10 where they have four games versus league opponents.”

Hare, meanwhile, was recognized for her play at the tournament, receiving a $1,500 scholarship from the Mac’s tournament committee.

The Cariboo Cougars began with a 6-1 loss to the Notre Dame Argos, before falling 5-2 to the Red Deer Optimist Chiefs with Thomas recording a helper in the contest.

The Cougars then lost for the third consecutive time, 6-2, to the Okanagan Rockets. Dubois added a goal for the Cougars in the losing effort.

Lastly, the Cougars took on the Calgary Flames, falling 7-1.


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