Quartet of Newfoundlanders competing in University Cup

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Mosher, Randell, Owens and Trask part of Acadia Axemen team competing in Saskatoon

Could a goaltender from Newfoundland backstop his team to a Canadian Interuniversity Sport men’s hockey title for a second straight year?
Evan Mosher of Conception Bay South will attempt just that as he and his Acadia University Axemen teammates begin play at the Potash Corp University Cup CIS men’s hockey championship today in Saskatoon.

The Atlantic University Sport (AUS) champion Axemen — who have four Newfoundlanders on their roster — are second seeds in the six-team tourney, ranked behind only the University of Alberta Golden Bears.

Last year, it was Labrador City native Dan LaCosta who supplied championship goaltending — including a shutout in the CIS final — for the University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds. Mosher, in his third year at Acadia, has shown himself to be capable of providing similar netminding. This season, the 23-year-old posted a 2.12 goals-against average and .919 save percentage — both tops in the conference — as the Axemen won the AUS title, and his 17 wins (against five losses) tied for most in the conference. In the AUS playoffs, Mosher had a 6-2 record, 2.28 GAA and .910 save percentage.

On Wednesday night in Saskatoon, Mosher was revealed as a second-team CIS all-star. Earlier this month, he was named to the AUS first all-star team, which also included Acadia defenceman and St. John’s native Chris Owens.

The 24-year-old Owens, in his fourth year with the Axemen, had nine goals and 22 assists in 28 games this season, his 31 total points tops among all AUS rearguards.

The other Newfoundlanders on Acadian are forwards Travis Randell of Twillingate and Scott Trask of Bonavista. The 23-year-old Randell, a right-winger, had three goals and nine points this season, his second in the university ranks. Trask, 21, is in his first year with Acadia. In 24 games, the left-winger had three goals and seven assists.

Owens came to Acadia from the Miramichi Timberwolves of the Maritime junior A league. The other three Newfoundlanders on the Axemen are products of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League — Mosher with the P.E.I. Rocket, Randell with the Halifax Mooseheads and Trask with the Moncton Wildcats, although Trask did play his overage junior year with Summerside of the Maritime league.

Joining Acadia and Canada West conference champion Alberta at the CIS championships this week are the No. 3 Windsor Lancers (OUA champs), No. 4 McGill Redmen (OUA finalists), No. 5 Saskatchewan Huskies (hosts) and No. 6 Carleton Ravens (OUA bronze medallists).

Acadia is in a round-robin pool with Windsor and Saskatchewan, and opens its tourney schedule with a game against the Lancers at 9:30 p.m. NT. The Axemen’s remaining schedule will be determined by the result of that game.

The first-place finishers in each pool will meet in the gold-medal final, which will be broadcast live on Sportsnet 360 at 3 p.m. Sunday. The final two-round robin games of the tourney, being played Saturday, will also be broadcast.

Acadia (21-4-3 this season) has been to the University Cup tournament six times before this season, winning twice (1993 and 1996). The Axemen’s last appearance in the championship was 2006.

Organizations: Atlantic University Sport, University of Alberta Golden Bears.Last, University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Geographic location: Acadia, Saskatoon, Labrador Windsor Canada West Alberta Saskatchewan

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