Briercrest's undefeated streak ends at three

Posted: November 7, 2014

The Briercrest Clippers played well enough to win Friday night against the visiting Augustana Vikings, but ultimately came up short. Playing without the services of starters Dirk de Waal, Stephen Langford, Manny Schellenberg, BJ Pirus and Justin Steenhof, the Clippers took a "next man up" approach as their paddling of the Portage Voyageurs the previous weekend infused their lineup with an expectation to win from the drop of the puck.

Briercrest buzzed in the offensive zone early in the first period, but the guests were able to withstand the energy at the Barkman arena and organize a response. The Vikings struck twice in the span of thirty seconds at the twelve minute mark to open a 2-0 lead. Briercrest was not rattled, however, and the home side showed no cracks in their mental composure. The defensive pair of Erik Robitaille and Micah Abbott showed both valour and finesse as Robitaille laid out a Viking at the offensive blue line and Abbott cleaned up the subsequent rush.

A bewildering penalty call against Briercrest to start the second period tested an area of weakness in their penalty kill, but it was Aaron Armstrong blowing past former CIS star Alex Rodgers to bury a shorthanded marker and cut the lead to one. Augustana would get that back shortly afterward, as a misdirected bounce landed on the stick of Matthew Foster and left a sheepish look on his face as he collected an easy 3-1 goal. In an example of perhaps taking the Viking personae too far, one of their forwards speared a Briercrest player during a scrum and earned four minutes as a result. Armstrong's tour de force came just after the penalty expired as he fought through the mugging of no less than three defenders, getting knocked down in the process, before getting up and scoring his second of the night to again close the gap to one and seize the momentum heading into the second intermission.

An entertaining third period saw chances both ways as the Clippers left it all on the ice. Captain Josh Dufresne showed great heart in hustling back at the end of a long shift to intercept a threatening pass, and Connor Dobberthien was solid in net. Two more goals found their way through, however, and the final horn sounded at 5-2. 

Players of the game were Aaron Armstrong for Briercrest and Matthew Foster for the Vikings. Tomorrow's rematch, and the last home game of the semester, starts at 2:00pm. 

If you can’t make it to the Barkman Arena for tomorrow’s game be sure to watch online at

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