The UPEI Panthers are chasing their first Atlantic field hockey championship in five years this weekend in Halifax.
The Panthers are ranked second, behind Saint Mary’s, going into the six-team event. They play Saturday at 3 p.m. against UNB and at 7 p.m. against Acadia.
The top two teams in each pool advance to Sunday’s semifinal with the winners playing in the championship at 1:30 p.m., a match the Panthers hope to be part of.
“We know we’re right there and just have to put a full game together to beat Saint Mary’s,” said Panthers coach Charla Currie. “We certainly believe we can do it.”
To get there they will have to shoot the ball, get shots on goal and go hard after rebounds while shutting down penalty corners.
Currie said the team has had a great week of practice and the Panthers are upbeat heading into the championship weekend.
“Things are clicking,” she said. “Maybe we’re peaking at the right time, which would be perfect.”
The team is relatively young, but many have experience playing provincially.
The Panthers will be looking for strong performances from Katherine Koughan, Stephanie MacKinnon and Eliza MacLauchlan.
“They’re our three keys,” Currie said. They “set the tone for the team and really put the defence on their heels.”
This weekend’s winner will represent Atlantic Canada at the Ontario University Athletics championship.