Men’s hockey Pan­thers bat­tle in­juries, Ax­e­men

UPEI soc­cer teams close out reg­u­lar sea­son on the road this week­end

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - Sports -

In­juries have be­come a ma­jor is­sue for the UPEI Pan­thers as they pre­pare to host the Aca­dia Ax­e­men in At­lantic Uni­ver­sity Sport men’s hockey action tonight.

Game time at MacLauch­lan Arena is 7 p.m.

The Pan­thers (2-2-1) may have as many as six play­ers on the side­line for their lone game this week­end. Cory Vitarelli, Jor­dan Knox and Howie Martin are out for the game while Zach McCul­lough and Greg O’Brien are day-to-day and Aaron Daw­son is ques­tion­able

“We have dealt with the chal­lenge of in­juries since the start of this sea­son,” said UPEI head coach Dy­lan Tay­lor. “What we have done is fo­cus on find­ing a way to get it done as a team all year and we ex­pect to ap­proach things the same way against Aca­dia.”

The Ax­e­men (2-2-0) beat UPEI 4-1 in Wolfville, N.S., last Satur­day.

“Aca­dia will be a big chal­lenge for us to re­spond to be­cause we didn’t per­form to the best of our abil­ity the last time we played them,” said Tay­lor. “They are deep up front and can score some goals. They have vet­er­ans like Jonathon Laberge and Philippe Ber­trand and cou­ple of re­ally good rook­ies in Spencer Jeze­rou and An­drew Clark.”

Sec­ond-year for­ward Matt Carter leads the Pan­thers with six goals and three as­sists and his goal to­tal has tied for the con­fer­ece lead. Rookie Dy­lan Quaile, with three goals and five as­sists, is sec­ond in UPEI scor­ing and also sec­ond in con­fer­ence scor­ing for de­fence­men.

Kris MacDon­ald from Orwell is in his fourth sea­son with the Ax­e­men.

UPEI-Saint Mary’s game at MacLauch­lan Arena which was orig­i­nally sched­uled for Fri­day has been moved to Nov. 22.

MEN’S SOC­CER

The UPEI men’s soc­cer team fin­ishes off the reg­u­lar sea­son this week­end in Hal­i­fax with games to­day at Dal­housie and Sun­day at Saint Mary’s.

It’s an im­por­tant week­end for the Pan­thers as they seek to fin­ish ei­ther first or sec­ond to earn a firstround bye at the AUS cham­pi­onship, Nov. 6-8, at Dal­housie.

The Pan­thers (8-3-0) are sit­ting three points be­hind first-place Cape Bre­ton (8-1-3) and need wins in both games this week­end and ei­ther a loss or tie by the Capers Sun­day at Aca­dia to clinch first place.

If that doesn’t work, sec­ond place can be wrapped up on to­day by de­feat­ing the Tigers.

“We lost con­trol of our own des­tiny last Sun­day when we lost to Monc­ton,” said UPEI head coach Lewis Page. “Now we will have to tighten up and give our best ef­fort against Dal­housie on Satur­day and hope Aca­dia does a job in their game against Cape Bre­ton. Re­gard­less, we know that it’s re­ally im­por­tant to fin­ish out the sea­son on a high note, go­ing into the play­offs next week­end.”

WOMEN’S SOC­CER

Sport­ing a 8-2-1 record, the women Pan­thers travel to Hal­i­fax for games to­day at Dal­housie and Sun­day at Saint Mary’s know­ing one of three out­comes will de­cide their play­off seed­ing for the AUS play­offs in St. John’s, N.L., Nov. 6-8.

Two wins guar­an­tees first place, one win guar­an­tees sec­ond place and no wins means ei­ther third or fourth place.

“It’s in our hands,” said UPEI coach Mike Red­mond. “If we were told two months ago we would be in this po­si­tion head­ing into the fi­nal week­end, we would have gladly ac­cepted it.”

Red­mond is pleased to have vet­eran striker Kinza Baker back for the week­end, as her pace and ag­gres­sive­ness were missed in re­cent matches.

Vet­eran full­back and cap­tain Mandy McKenna is ques­tion­able, for the week­end hav­ing missed the last three games with a lower body in­jury.

McKenna’s re­turn would al­low Gina Lisa to play her favoured wing po­si­tion, a pos­i­tive for the Pan­thers against an ath­letic Dal­housie mid­field.

It is also ex­pected Carolyn McKenna’s strong per­for­mance last week­end will earn her sub­stan­tial min­utes against the Tigers.

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