Hayley Wickenheiser and the Calgary Dinos opened the 2013 Championships hoping to retain their CIS championship title. And the Dinos certainly started the tournament with a statement, blanking the St. Francis Xavier X-Women 4–0. Despite winning it all last season, Calgary entered the tournament as the fifth-seed this year, and their defeat of the second ranked X-Women proved an upset. The Calgary victory also successfully ended the X-Women’s 17 game win streak.
The Dinos’ two Olympians Wickenheiser and Iya Gavrilova teamed up to exploit an early two-man advantage for the first goal. Gavrilova set Wickenheiser up in front of the net with a beautiful pass to allow the Canadian to send the puck straight into the back of the net past the X-Women goaltender, Kristy Garrow.
At the end of the first period, once again on the powerplay advantage, Dinos fifth year Elana Lovell gave Calgary a two-point lead heading into a scoreless second period. The five X-Women penalties in the first period alone proved deadly to their offensive attempts as the women were unable to get much momentum going and were forced to play catch-up from early on.
The X-Women battled hard in the second period, but could not convert on any of their four powerplay opportunities.
In the third, the Dinos continued to extend their lead. Gavrilova added to her first period assist with a goal from an Elana Lovell rebound. That goal was followed by a score off the stick of Calgary team captain Tanya Morgan six minutes later, to round out the scoring in the Dinos’ shut out victory.
Dinos head coach Danielle Goyette told the CIS, “We knew it would be a battle today, St. FX is a team that isn’t used to losing. We knew that they can bounce back, so we really had to tie them up in the defensive zone and not give them any opportunities. The girls played well today, and the longer the game went on the better we played.”
“They are a very good hockey team and if you don’t take advantage of your opportunities early on, it’s really hard to come back,” explained X-Women head coach David Synishin. “We have to reset. The thing about this tournament is that if you win one game you’re in the bronze-medal game, and I think that’s a very legitimate goal for us.”