Fox outstanding despite home setback against Griffins

Madison Fox (33) played one of her best games of the season.
Madison Fox (33) played one of her best games of the season.

Brent Forster - RDC

Red Deer, AB – Queens goaltender Madison Fox gave her team a chance Saturday evening. The first-year netminder stopped 92 per cent of the shots she faced, but the Queens couldn't solve the Griffins goaltender and top ranked defence. The visitors used a two goal second period to down the host Red Deer College Queens 2-0 at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre.

The Griffins tested Queens goaltender Madison Fox only minutes into the first period, but the Bachelor of Science Nursing student made a nice right pad save, setting the tone for the scoreless frame. Both teams had chances on the power play, but neither side could convert. Madison Fox, from Maple Ridge, made 12 saves. Natalie Bender turned aside five for MacEwan.

In the middle stanza, the visitors scored the game's opening marker at 5:10. While on a five-on-three power play, the Griffins' Jayme Doyle quickly released a shot past Fox's glove on their 16th shot. Shyla Jans and Carley Jewell had the assists.

With 6:59 remaining in the period, MacEwan University went up by a pair. Chantal Ricker carried the puck across the slot, sent a backhand on Fox and then jammed home the rebound. Jordyn Reimer picked up the assist.

In the third, the Queens had a prime opportunity to climb back into the contest on a power play with 5:30 left. Mary Hirsch made a nice rush up the right side and tested Bender, but MacEwan's defence cleared the rebound.

Queens Head Coach Kelly Coulter pulled Fox with 2:33 remaining for the extra skater but the Queens couldn't tally.

"I thought our third period was good. Just a little inconsistent on little detail things in the d-zone, kind of missing our checks and not checking quickly," says Coulter. "They are a skilled team that moves the puck well. Our last 20 minutes we can build off of. We need a little bit more detail oriented going forward and more pressure oriented against their team."

Madison Fox was named the Collegiate Sports Medicine Queens Player-of-the-Game, making 23 saves out of 25 shots (0.920).

"I thought she had a very strong game for us. I definitely agree with her selection for player of the game. She is is working with the goaltending coach, getting focused and prepared and being calm in the net," explains Coulter.

"Madison had an excellent academic semester which helped and proved to herself that she can play hockey and handle the heavy academic load. She will be a nice player for us moving forward." 

Chantal Ricker received the award for the Griffins.

Natalie Bender turned aside all 12 RDC shots.

MacEwan struck once on four power plays. RDC couldn't score on three opportunities. 

Over the break, there was one departure and one first-year forward dealing with an injury.

"We lost Jessi-Lynn Sumuling, who decided to head back to Manitoba," says Coulter. "Right now we have Carissa Hogan out with an upper body injury."

On Friday, Jan. 17, the Queens (9-4-1-0) will host the NAIT Ooks (9-4-1-0) at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre at 7:00 pm. Both teams are tied for second in the standings with 19 points. 

The first place Griffins (13-3-0-0) will be back in action on Friday, Jan. 24, when they play NAIT (9-4-1-0) at 7:00 pm.