Season-opener split

Captain pots three in season-opening series split with Calgary

Lucas Skrumeda had a goal in Manitoba's win over Calgary on Saturday

The U of M Bisons men’s hockey club opened the 2018-19 Canada West season splitting a road series with the University of Calgary Dinos over the weekend.

Bisons captain Brett Stovin got the season started on the right foot, scoring three goals on the weekend, despite the club only earning two points of a possible four.



Manitoba fell behind early in the season opener, but threatened to battle back only to lose 5-2 Friday night.

Logan Fisher snuck one by goaltender Byron Spriggs just 39 seconds in for the 1-0 Dinos lead.

After Riley Sheen put a shot over Spriggs’s shoulder to make it 2-0 Dinos in the second, Manitoba responded.

Liam Bilton found Stovin cutting in toward the net. Stovin put a backhander by Calgary goaltender Jordan Papirny to cut deficit to one.

Two minutes later Devon Skoleski snuck a wrister in at a tough angle to tie things up 2-2. The goal was Skoleski’s first as a Bison.

Everything fell apart for Manitoba in the third.

Just under three minutes into the final frame Ryan Graham roofed the puck to restore the Dinos lead.

Cain Franson scored just over a minute later and Tim Vanstone added an empty netter for the 5-2 final.

Skoleski had a goal on two shots in his Bisons debut, while fellow rookie Mackenzie Dwyer went pointless with two shots and was a -1 on the night.




The second game of the weekend was the opposite of the first, as Manitoba got ahead early, and stayed that way, cruising to a 5-3 win.

Skoleski continued a strong debut weekend for the Bisons in the first. The Bisons broke into the Calgary zone on an odd-man rush and Skoleski beat goaltender Matt Greenfield for the 1-0 lead.

Lucas Skrumeda put one by Greenfield on the powerplay, and Manitoba ended the first with a 2-0 lead.

In the second, Stovin struck again. After Dane Gibson took a hooking minor to give Manitoba the man-advantage, Skrumeda found Stovin and he put his second of the weekend away for a 3-0 lead.

However, the Dinos did not go away after that.

Sheen notched back-to-back goals, just over a minute apart, to cut the Bisons lead to 3-2 at the end of the second.

Forward Brett Brooks restored Manitoba’s two-goal lead in the third and James Shearer gave Calgary another.

Stovin notched his third of the year to put the game away 5-3, and the Bisons earned the split.

The Bisons will head down south next weekend for a pair of exhibition games. The herd plays the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks Oct. 6, and the University of Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks Oct. 7.


The next regular season action for Manitoba will be the home opener series against the University of Alberta Golden Bears. Game one is Oct. 12 and game two is Oct. 13, both at 7 p.m. CDT.