CALGARY, Alta. (March 10, 2019) – The Calgary Inferno came out strong on Sunday to finish the series on a winning note and book their ticket to the Clarkson Cup final against Les Canadiennes de Montreal.
“[They were] high pressure games, obviously we didn’t want to start the weekend off down a game, but we came back and battled through, the last two games were all or nothing, and we wanted to get to the finals,” commented Brianna Decker, second star of the game with two goals.
It was a tentative start to the opening period for both teams. The pace picked up halfway through the frame with teams exchanging quality scoring chances. The Calgary Inferno finally capitalized on one of their chances with Brianna Decker firing a shot from her knees past Elaine Chuli in net for the Furies in the final minute of the first period, assisted by Rebecca Johnston and Zoe Hickel. Shots after the first were in favour of the Inferno 10-8.
The Inferno had a strong start to the second period, but it was Toronto who got on the board next. Carolyne Prevost tied the game 1-1 with a wrist shot from the short side assisted by Shiann Darkangelo at 5:35 into the period. Keeping up the pressure, the Inferno regained the lead at 17:20 into the frame, with Brianne Jenner tipping in a shot from Blayre Turnbull, Halli Krzyzaniak recorded the second assist on the goal. The Inferno out-shot the Furies 17-5 in the second for a total shot count of 27-13 after two.
Decker increased the Inferno’s lead to 3-1 half way through the third, netting her second goal of the game off a cross ice pass from Hickel, and Brigette Lacquette. The Inferno took a penalty for too many men with three minutes left in the third, Toronto scored shortly after, but the goal was waved off immediately as the ref’s whistle had blown. The Furies pulled their goalie to have a 6-4 advantage, and Kacey Bellamy put the game away with a shorthanded empty net goal. Final shots were 35-18 in favour of the Inferno in a 4-1 win. Toronto’s goalie Elaine Chuli made 31 saves in the game and Alex Rigsby made 17 saves for the win.
3 Stars of the Game:
- Brianne Jenner (Inferno)
- Brianna Decker (Inferno)
- Blayre Turnbull (Inferno)
Calgary will face off against Les Canadiennes de Montréal in the Clarkson Cup for the third time in five years. The game will be held in Toronto on March 24, 2019 and broadcast on Sportsnet. Calgary has won four of the six matchups against Montreal this season. Their last Cup win came in 2016 over Les Canadiennes. The Inferno have finished in the top three in the CWHL standings for the last five years.
“Going into Montreal, we just need to focus on us, and if we play like we did the last couple games here, I think we’ll be in good shape” added Decker
Recent Clarkson Cup Champions:
2018- Markham Thunder (2) vs. Kunlun Red Star (1) (OT)
2017- Les Canadiennes de Montréal (3) vs. Calgary Inferno (1)
2016- Calgary Inferno (8) vs. Les Canadiennes de Montréal (3)
2015- Boston Blades (3) vs. Montreal Stars (2) (OT)
2014- Toronto Furies (1) vs. Boston Blades (0) (OT)