EDMONTON – A quick strike in the third minute by senior midfielder Morgan Corbett eventually led to the first win of the season for the No.10 University of Alberta Pandas, taking a 1-0 decision over the Mount Royal University Cougars, Sunday afternoon at Foote Field.
The lone goal in the game is Corbett’s ninth career goal in conference play and the Edmonton native’s second career game-winner. Third-year netminder Ashley Turner made three saves and earned her first shutout in Evergreen and Gold silks.
Fourth-year netminder Katrina Greenley made nine saves in the loss.
The game’s only goal came from an early free kick awarded to Alberta just outside the 18-yard box, leading to an initial shot by fourth-year midfielder Kiera Fujimoto pounding off the crossbar before Corbett cleaned up the rebound for her first goal of the season.
The Cougars countered by unleashing an offensive wave between the 15th and 20th minutes, but every shot went wide to keep the score at 1-0.
A wave by the Pandas followed late in the first half, and another midway through the second half, but Greenley stood tall to keep her squad within reach throughout the rest of the match.
Sophomore forward MacKenna Parks had a glorious chance in alone in the 74th minute but Greenley made a point-blank save to prevent a two-goal deficit.
The Calgary native then made another stellar point-blank save with her legs off Fujimoto in the 76th minute, still giving the Cougars a chance to tie a Pandas team who gave up a late lead in their previous match the day before against Lethbridge.
Despite some heavy defence by Alberta in the final minutes to keep Mount Royal hemmed in their own zone, the Cougars earned two opportunities in the final seconds of injury time, sophomore forward Kaitlyn Clarke grazing a shot off the top of the crossbar and over the net before fourth-year midfielder Janai Martens had her shot blocked just before the final whistle blew.
The 0-2-0 Cougars head home to host UBC and Victoria next weekend while 1-0-1 Alberta heads out on the road to face off against UBC Okanagan and Thompson Rivers.