Jefferson Hagen, MacEwan Athletics
EDMONTON – The MacEwan Griffins men's hockey team left it too late and ended up with too little when the final buzzer sounded on a 3-2 loss to the visiting Calgary Dinos on Saturday night.
"I thought we pushed hard at the end and gave ourselves a chance," said MacEwan head coach Mike Ringrose. "It comes down to playing 60 minutes. Last night I thought we did a pretty good job and we just didn't get the result. Tonight I thought we weren't quite as good.
"We chased the game a little bit. That's a good team, a veteran team that knows how to lock things down. Credit to them, I thought they did a good job tonight."
Calgary never trailed in the contest and completed a weekend sweep over MacEwan after also winning 4-0 on Friday.
With the loss, the Griffins fall to 2-4-0, while the Dinos improve to 4-2-0.
Calgary thought they'd opened the scoring in the first period, but the official waved it off after Josh Maser batted in a rebound with his glove.
But the Dinos eventually would open the scoring for real at 5:24 of the second period. Just as he did on Friday, Riley Stotts scored the visitors' opener on a powerplay.
Tyson Upper also scored for the second time in as many nights, making it 2-0 visitors at 13:23 when he tapped a rebound into an empty net off Arjun Atwal's inspired rush.
MacEwan's David Kope cut the lead in half, though, just over a minute later, when he caught up to a breakaway pass from Cameron Reagan and chipped it upstairs when Brodan Salmond attempted a poke-check.
Before the game was 40 minutes old, however, the Dinos led by two again when Kaden Elder one-timed a cross-seam powerplay pass from Stotts over James Porter's glove.
Roach pulled the Griffins to within one late when his powerplay point shot found its way through traffic.
Porter finished with 27 saves for MacEwan, while Salmond stopped 20 for the Dinos.
"The takeaway for us is you just can't take a minute off at this level," said Ringrose of the weekend defeats. "You've got to be prepared to play 60 minutes two nights in a row and if you don't, if you take time off, they make you pay for it.
"There are good players on the other side that will burn you. I thought tonight we didn't have that complete effort and that was the difference."
Next up for the Griffns is a road trip to Calgary to visit Mount Royal University on Friday (7 p.m.) and Calgary next Saturday (6 p.m., both Canada West TV presented by Co-op).