The Shaftesbury Titans staged a giant battle Friday morning forcing the Pursuit of Excellence team from Kelowna to come back from behind to win a third straight game at the 2013 Female Sport School Challenge at the MTS Iceplex.
The Pursuit team scored a pair of third-period power-play goals to defeat Shaftesbury 3-1.
Shaftesbury led 1-0 in the first period on a goal by defenceman Michela Esposito when her team was being outshot 24-12.
Shaftesbury goaltender Rachel Dyck was named her team's where of the game. POE's player of the game was team captain and Neepawa native Halli Krzyzaniak who scored her team's first goal which tied the game 1-1 in the second period and assisted on the insurance marker in the third.
"There's no doubt about it, if you want to put a measuring stick against somebody POE is the measuring stick in Canada. POE has established themselves as one of the top teams in North America," said Shaftesbury head coach Eugene Kaminsky, noting the POE team capitalized on two penalties taken by his team.
"That's something we can fix. We were in this game with them. Nobody likes losing but you can take some solace in the fact that we went against probably the best team in the country. I know they'll be in the final, I just hope we get another chance against them."
POE outshot Shaftesbury 32-20.
In the other Friday morning action, the host St. Mary's team lost 7-1 to the Edge School from Calgary. Meike Meilleur scored St. Mary's only goal on the power play late in the third.
The Okanagan Hockey Academy from Penticton shut out Fort Frances 6-0 and New Brunswick's Rothesay Netherwood beat the Banff Hockey Academy 6-1.
There are two remaining preliminary round games this afternoon after which the semi finalists will be determined.
At 3:15 p.m., Edge will play Fort Frances. Shaftesbury will take the ice at 3:30 p.m. against Rothesay Netherwood.
Both the POE and the Okanagan teams are 3-0.