(FREDERICTON, NB) Shae Demale (Red Deer, AB) scored twice, including the overtime winner, as the U SPORTS No. 2 Saint Mary's Huskies rallied to beat the UNB Reds 2-1, in two overtimes, Sunday afternoon.
Demale's game-winning goal came at 0:56 of the second overtime, on a wrist shot from the slot. It beat Reds goalie Kendra Woodland (Kamloops, BC) high on the glove side.
"It was a pretty important game, going into playoffs, and I got to finish it off good," said Demale. "I had a lot of chances throughout the game, and we just couldn't figure her (Woodland) out, so we just had to hold on and wait for our chances."
Demale also scored the Huskies' tying goal, with 1:04 to play in the third. She was named the Subway Player of the Game.
The Reds struck early in this game, the Atlantic University Sport regular season finale for both teams, scoring the game's first goal just 1:19 in.
Frederike Cyr (Candiac, QC) found a loose puck in front of Rebecca Clark (Keswick, ON) and shoved it past the Huskies goalie.
The teams would trade scoring opportunities throughout the remainder of the period, with Saint Mary's coming closest.
Brooke Murphy (Balla Philip, NB) took a cross-ice pass with about 9:00 left in the period, but Woodland slid across to slam the door on the UNB net.
In the second period, the Huskies put considerable pressure on the Reds early, but Woodland held the line.
Another flurry of activity, with the Huskies on the power-play, in the later stages of the period was thwarted too, as Woodland continued to shine.
Huskies' forward Caitlin Pejkovic (Sherwood Park, AB) had a glorious chance to even the score early in the third period, but Woodland somehow managed to make a save on her shot from close range.
Mid-way through the period, Woodland stoned Pejkovic again following a nice cross-slot pass from Taylor Keeping (Hacketts Cove, NS).
Forced to kill a late penalty, the Huskies pulled Clark with 1:42 to play.
Skating 5-on-5, Demale let a wrist shot fly from just inside the blue line. It beat Woodland with 1:04 to play, tying the score 1-1.
The first overtime solved nothing, setting the table for Demale's heroics.
"A loss never feels good, but we had a really good game today," said Woodland. "I wouldn't change it, honestly. We can learn from this and move forward going into the playoffs."
The Huskies outshot the Reds 44-15, and held UNB without a shot for more than 19 minutes of the third period.
"You can't really be too upset. You give everything you can, everything is on the line," said Woodland.
The Reds finish the regular season with an 18-9-1 record, good for fourth place in the AUS standings.
UNB will face the St. Thomas Tommies in the opening round of the playoffs.
That best of three series begins Thursday night, at UNB's Aitken Centre. Game time is 7:00pm.
Game two goes Saturday, at Fredericton's Grant-Harvey Centre, with game three, if necessary, at UNB on Monday night.
The Huskies finish atop the AUS standings with a 22-5-1 record, and will enjoy a first-round bye.
"If we see them again, in the playoffs, we'll be more prepared than ever," said Woodland, of the Huskies.
RECAP BY: Andy Campbell/UNB Athletics
PHOTOS BY: James West/for UNB Athletics