Overtime ecstasy for hockey Herd

Oswald's goal lifts University of Manitoba to series win over Regina

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Courtlyn Oswald stepped out of the Manitoba Bisons hockey team dressing room, her smile bright enough to light up most of south Winnipeg.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 23/02/2015 (2846 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Courtlyn Oswald stepped out of the Manitoba Bisons hockey team dressing room, her smile bright enough to light up most of south Winnipeg.

“Oh gosh… I’ve scored a few goals with the Bisons, but I don’t think any goal is going to compare to that,” began Oswald. “There’s no better feeling. A lot of the girls are still wearing their equipment in there.

“I think we’ll be here for a few hours.”

Winnipeg Free Press john woods / winnipeg free press Bisons Michelle Pawluk, Alana Serhan, Maggie Litchfield-Medd and Erica Rieder (from left) celebrate Litchfield-Medd's second-period goal against the University of Regina Cougars Sunday night.

Oswald played the hero for the Bison women Sunday night, scoring the game winner — and series winner — 3:54 into overtime to give Manitoba a 3-2 victory over the University of Regina Cougars at Wayne Fleming Arena.

The win, coming in Game 3 of the Canada West quarter-final series, pushes the Bisons into Round 2 of the playoffs next week against the UBC Thunderbirds.

It certainly didn’t come easy.

After winning the series opener Friday, the Bisons fell 4-3 in double overtime Saturday. And the dramatics spilled over to Sunday, as the Bisons blew a 2-0 second-period lead, including giving up the tying goal with just 1.3 seconds left in the game and the Regina net empty.

That set up the dramatic finish, as Oswald crashed the net following an excellent rush by teammate Lauryn Keen. Canada West leading scorer and top rookie Alanna Sharman opened the scoring with captain Maggie Litchfield-Medd putting the Bisons up 2-0 before the Cougars rallied on goals by Emma Waldenberger and Bailey Braden.

“We’ve been up and down, I’m not going to lie,” said Oswald. “But I feel like we bounced right back after a tough loss. A lot of the girls were really down after (Saturday’s) game but our captain really got us going again and we came out flying, ready to win this today.

“We all felt it, obviously, when they tied it up. But there’s no time to really experience any emotions.”

The victory, and series win, was significant for the Bisons program, under the guidance of Canada West coach of the year Jon Rempel. Manitoba has 10 freshmen and five sophomores in its lineup and, while that showed at times in this series, their resilience was also evident.

“I have to give this group credit because that was an emotional loss Saturday night and to come back and win it in overtime is what this group is all about,” said Rempel.

“This group has been doing this all year. They really don’t know how to take no for an answer. They’ve been a pleasure to coach. I don’t have enough good things to say about this group.”

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca Twitter: @WFPEdTait

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