Wildcats win playoff opener in special teams battle

Sara Kendall was fully extended during the Wildcats' playoff opener. STEVEN MAH/SOUTHWEST BOOSTER

The Swift Current Diamond Energy Wildcats scored three power play goals in a 6-2 win over the visiting Battleford Sharks to open the Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League playoffs.

The game’s first three goals were scored on the power play and the two teams combined for five power play goals overall.

Maddy McCleary scored the only goal of the first period with a power play blast.

Taylor Lind, fresh off being named the league’s Most Valuable Player, opened the second period with a power play goal that was assisted by netminder Amaya Giraudier. Ensley Fendelet got the Sharks on the board with a screened shot on the rush with 7:24 left in the middle stanza. Carissa Hogan restored the two-goal lead with a late goal in the period when she kept the puck on a two-on-one and wired it top shelf.

The Wildcats added three goals 2:57 apart in the third period when Sara Kendall scored on the power play and Baylee Kirwan scored on a penalty shot. Kendall quickly added her second of the period for a 6-1 lead.

Sydney Rowley added a late power play goal for the Sharks to close the scoring.

Lind and Hogan, who recently represented Saskatchewan at the Canada Winter Games, each added two assists during three-point outings. Crystal Wale, Ashlee Wolfe, and McCleary also added assists.

Giraudier made 19 saves in the win. Haylie Biever took the loss with 34 saves.

Game two will be Friday in the Battlefords.