EDMONTON – For the second-straight night, the No.1 University of Alberta Golden Bears came up short against their provincial rivals, the No.7 University of Calgary Dinos, taking a 2-1 loss Friday night at Clare Drake Arena.
Former Kootenay Ice Kevin King scored the game-winner and assisted on the other goal for the Dinos, a tally by sophomore rearguard Drydn Dow. Netminder Jacob DeSerres made 28 saves in the win, improving the third-best goals against average in CIS to 1.64.
Last season’s Canada West Defenceman of the Year, Jordan Rowley, scored the lone goal for Alberta in the final minute of play but the Bears couldn’t come up with the equalizer. Sophomore goaltender Luke Siemens made 16 saves in the loss.
Calgary improves to 12-4 on the season, now only two points back of 13-3 Alberta in the conference standings.
The Bears controlled the play for most of the opening period, keeping the puck in the Calgary zone for most of the frame, but it was the Dinos with the best chance, grabbing a two-on-none midway through the stanza that blueliner Davis Vandane used to shoot high right to keep the game scoreless after one, the home team outshooting the visitors 12-5.
On a Josh Derko penalty, Calgary opened the scoring at the 5:56 mark of the second period when Dow fired a slapshot along the ground from the top of the faceoff circle for his first of the season.
The two squads then played a defensive game for the rest of the middle 20 minutes, the second good scoring opportunity coming with 41 seconds left on the clock when Elgin Pearce, who scored four goals in Thursday night’s 5-3 Dino victory, handcuffed Siemens with a wrister, but the puck went just wide of the far post.
Down a goal with one period left, Alberta came out strong again in the third, second-leading scorer on the team, T.J. Foster, earning a point-blank rebound right in front 90 seconds in, but DeSerres was equal to the task, putting his right pad down for the sensational stop.
Two minutes later, former Moose Jaw Warrior Spencer Edwards had a chance at a Calgary insurance goal right on the doorstep of the Alberta crease, but Siemens turned in his own stellar save, redirecting the puck to the corner.
At the 10:37 mark, however, Edwards stripped rookie defender Dylan Bredo of the puck behind the Bears’ goal, feeding a wide-open King in the slot, the Calgary native slipping the puck to the left corner for his fifth of the season and the 2-0 lead.
Alberta, their 12-game winning streak snapped the previous night, struggled to regain focus after that goal, getting no shots on net during a man-advantage opportunity with five minutes left.
Yet swarming the Dino crease in the final minute, after Rowley and Foster were both unable to put home a loose puck just as the final minute began, the puck found its way back to Rowley with 47.6 seconds left on the clock, the Edmonton native backhanding it top shelf to cut the lead to one.
With Calgary forward Adam Kambeitz taking a high-sticking penalty with 31.0 seconds left, Alberta managed to create a few mad scrambles in the Dino slot, but the defence blocked every shot to cap off the weekend series sweep.
The Bears went 0-4 on the man-advantage on the night while Calgary finished 1-4.
Alberta remains at home next weekend, hosting the Manitoba Bisons, while Calgary will spend next weekend as host of the UBC Thunderbirds.