In a thrilling and high-scoring game Friday night, the University of Western?Mustangs downed the Queen's Gaels 17-16 in overtime to move on to the Baggataway Cup semifinals. Queen's overcame four- and five-goal deficits, then had to come back once more with a goal by Alex Wright with just seven seconds to play in regulation time to force overtime. The Gaels then took the lead in the first of two four-minute overtime periods with another goal by Wright, but Kyle Childerhose scored twice in the second half of overtime to give the Mustangs the win that propels them to a semifinal matchup at 3 pm Saturday. The game between Western and the McGill Redmen will be available to view via free live webcast by JVI Video.
Last year, Queen's overcame a late deficit with three goals in the final minute of the game to upset the Mustangs in the Baggataway quarterfinals. Friday night, Western came out of the gates looking like they were determined not to leave the outcome in doubt. The Mustangs got the game's first four goals as they controlled play all over the field.
But Queen's, playing in the Baggataway Cup for just the second time, once again proved there's no give up in them. They fought back to tie the game and actually took a 6-5 lead when Brendan Zoehner scored with just under five minutes to play in the half. Goals by Ryan McCrory and Childerhose gave the Mustangs a 7-6 lead as the teams went to halftime.
Western went on a four-goal run, including another pair by Childerhose, in the third quarter to pull ahead 12-7. This time it looked the Gaels were done for, but they made use of lots of ball and player movement in the offensive zone to create scoring chances and took advantage of them. Queen's ran off six straight goals and just like that they were back in front, 13-12.
Jesse Gamble scored to tie it up for Western, but the Gaels moved back in front on a goal by Wright. Then it was Gamble again for the Mustangs. This time, Western was able to string a pair of goals together when Jordan Tripp fired home his second of the game.
It was looking dire for Queen's when they still trailed by one goal as the timer came onto the field to indicate there were less than 30 seconds to play in regulation time. The Gaels pressed and Zoehner was able to sneak a pass across the crease to Wright, who calmly stepped out from the side of the crease to the top and deposited the ball past a diving Western goalie and defender to tie the game. Just seven seconds remained.
In overtime, it was once again Wright from Zoehner connecting, this time to give the Gaels the lead two and a half minutes into the first period. Western took advantage of a power play to tie the game up on Childerhose's marker a minute and a half into the second overtime period.
Then, with less than a minute to play, Childerhose found the back of the net again for what would hold up as the winning goal. He totaled five goals and an assist and was named player of the game for the Mustangs. Wright's four goals at crucial times earned him player of the game nod for Queen's.