Prince George Cougars forward Troy Bourke cuts through centre ice during the second period of their game against the Medicine Hat Tigers on Wednesday evening at CN Centre.
Tigers tame Cats in doubleheader
By Alistair McInnis - Prince George Free Press
Published: March 02, 2012 8:00 AM
Updated: March 02, 2012 8:53 AM
Wednesday evening was another one of those nights at CN Centre.
The Prince George Cougars’ best player on the ice, goalie Drew Owsley, recorded 39 saves to keep his team in the game. But limited offence was provided in a 4-1 Western Hockey League loss to the Medicine Hat Tigers.
Forward Greg Fraser scored the lone goal for the home team, a power-play marker at 18:40 of the first period.
“It’s a little easier obviously playing when your team scores more goals, when you have the lead and stuff,” Owsley said. “But just for me, I just kind of have to stay focused the whole game because our margin of error is so small. My margin of error is so small back there that I have to keep her under three goals for us to have a chance.”
The Tigers’ top scoring duo of Hunter Shinkaruk and Emerson Etem showed again why they’ve combined for 98 of their team’s 233 goals. Both players were all over the offensive zone, Shinkaruk leading the way with a hat trick, his 45th tally of the season an empty netter that rounded out the scoring at 19:42 of the third period.
Etem chipped in with a pair of helpers and sits sixth in league scoring with 53 goals and 45 assists for 98 points.
Brendan Hurley scored Medicine Hat’s other goal, the game winner at 9:29 of the second period. The visitors outshot the home team 43-33.
Cougars head coach Dean Clark gave credit to Tyler Bunz of the Tigers, the winning goalie in both games of a doubleheader that began Tuesday night. In the first half of the two-game set, the Tigers downed the Cougars 3-2.
“He made some saves at some times of the game that were pretty crucial,” Clark said of Wednesday night’s contest. “I think the non icing call that led to the second goal for them was a pretty critical play of the game. It should’ve probably been 1-1 going into the third. But we gave up such a bad goal, the third goal with a line change that the guys are sleeping on and it ends up in our net, so we didn’t help ourselves either.”
The Cougars are riding a six-game losing streak, occupying the WHL basement with 19 wins, 42 losses, zero overtime setbacks and two shootout defeats (19-42-0-2). They start the second half of an eight-game homestand tonight, the first half of a weekend doubleheader against the Spokane Chiefs (7 p.m. at CN Centre). The two teams will meet at the same time and place on Saturday.