Vikings ACAC Champions!
Posted on March 24, 2012 by Jadene Mah
“Thank you Vikings Nation! After 37 years, we are once again on top!” – Hockey Coach Blaine Gusdal
After a closely-matched series versus the NAIT Ooks, the Vikings came into this evening’s game still up 2-1 in the series, and were determined to get it done on the road after last night’s overtime loss.
Assistant captain Dan Hope opened up the scoring only minutes into the first period and would go unanswered until the second. The Ooks scored on a power play to tie up the game.
The Vikings answered back almost immediately when Captain Torrie Dyck was able to get past the tough goaltending of Shannon Szabados. NAIT scored early in the third, tieing up the game at 2-2.
For the second night in a row, these two skilled teams headed into overtime.
For ten tense minutes both sides traded shots on net, showing exceptional defensive play and goaltending. Vikings goaltender Joel Danyluk made two very big saves, keeping his team in the game and forcing a second overtime. The teams headed to the locker room through the cheers of a big crowd of Vikings Nation who came out to NAIT to show their support for the boys.
With Vikings Nation on their feet or on the edge of their seats, the team headed into a second overtime. After 9 shots on net, Dean Prpick was able to sink one and claim victory for the Vikings. The team erupted onto the ice to the deafening cheers of fans and family!
Goaltender Joel Danyluk was awarded player of the game after his exceptional play – not only in this final game but throughout the playoffs. Captain Torrie Dyck and the team’s assistant captains – Daniel Hope, Ryan Cornforth, and Richard Dupre – were the first to raise the ACAC Championship cup.
“I cannot begin to explain how incredibly proud I am of this group right now,” said coach Blaine Gusdal. “Right from the coaching staff to our training staff and every single player – everyone went above and beyond for an entire season, preparing for a moment like this.” He laughed out loud. “To see the boys celebrating as Champions and especially as Vikings Champions is something I will never forget! It’s a very special feeling for me and I am so thankful for the opportunity to be here and so thankful for all our loyal supporters. Thank you Vikings Nation! After 37 years, we are once again on top!”
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