Herd falls flat against Regina

Winless Cougars limp into Winnipeg and claim two points

Bisons head coach Mike Sirant looks on during the action.

The U of M Bisons men’s hockey team took on the Regina Cougars Friday night, handing Regina its first win of the campaign 3-1.

The Bisons played on their heels for most of the game, losing puck battles and mishandling passes.

“We just got away from our identity so much in this game tonight,” Bisons head coach Mike Sirant said postgame.

“We’ve had a good start to the season because we played to our identity — we got so far from playing to our identity [tonight] that we didn’t deserve to win.”

After a scoreless first period, Regina broke through in the second with a shorthanded goal from Zach McPhee.

A blocked Bisons shot was sent up ice where McPhee chased it down. He walked in on a partial break and snapped a shot five-hole on Byron Spriggs  to give the Cougars a 1-0 lead.

“That was early in the game, we had plenty of time to bounce back from that,” Sirant said.

“We didn’t start really competing and playing the way we should until in the third period, and that’s what happens, you run out of time.”

Regina added to its lead late in the frame, as Tristan Frei and Arthur Miller broke into the Manitoba zone. Frei sent a pass from the half-wall to a streaking Miller, who deflected the puck over a sprawled Spriggs for a 2-0 lead.

The snowball continued to roll in the third, as Corey Kosloski was the beneficiary of a Bisons defensive breakdown for the 3-0 lead. The herd finally responded two  minutes later.

A Mackenzie Dwyer point-shot was stopped by Regina goalie Dawson MacAuley and the puck dropped in front. Brett Brooks won the foot race and tucked in his second of the year to cut the Cougars’ lead to 3-1.

That was all the herd got, as they fell to 2-3-0 on the year.

The Bisons will be back in action against the Regina Cougars today at 2 p.m. CDT.