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Panthers hosting top-ranked UNB tonight

Darcy Ashley takes a pass during a UPEI Panthers practice Tuesday in Charlottetown.
Darcy Ashley takes a pass during a UPEI Panthers practice Tuesday in Charlottetown. - Jason Malloy

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. – The UPEI Panthers get to measure themselves against the top men’s hockey team in the country tonight.

The Gardiner MacDougall-coached UNB Varsity Reds come to town for a 7 p.m. contest at MacLauchlan Arena.

“It’s a good measuring stick,” Panthers head coach Forbes MacPherson said before Tuesday’s practice. “It’s good for guys to continue to evaluate their game.”

Playing one of the top U Sports teams is nothing new for the Panthers.

RELATED: Tanner McCabe making an impact in rookie season with UPEI.

UPEI has played six games in January, including two games against St. FX and one against Acadia and Saint Mary’s. The Panthers went 2-2-0 against the three teams, who were ranked in the top six when the Panthers played them.

The Panthers will be looking to build on last weekend’s game that saw them defeat Acadia before losing to Saint Mary’s in a game that the Huskies were leading 3-2 with four minutes to play. UPEI also out-chanced the Huskies early with plenty of Grade A scoring chances.

“Guys were feeling confident from the night before. . . ,” he said, but “there’s quality goaltending in this league.”

The Varsity Reds (20-1-3) have long clinched a playoff spot but are only a point up on St. FX for first place in the Atlantic University Sport hockey conference. The Panthers are 6-17-1 and two points up on Dalhousie for fifth in the seven-team conference where all but one team makes the post-season.

UPEI will dress five defencemen for tonight’s game as Bobby Zinkan is out for the regular season with a broken collarbone sustained Friday night.


Remaining games

A look at the UPEI Panthers men’s hockey team’s remaining regular season games:

Tonight

7 p.m. – UNB at UPEI.

Friday

7 p.m. – UPEI at Moncton.

Friday, Feb. 2

7 p.m. – UPEI at Acadia.

Saturday, Feb. 3

7 p.m. – UPEI at Saint Mary’s.

Friday, Feb. 9

7 p.m. – Dalhousie at UPEI.

Saturday, Feb. 10

7 p.m. – St. FX at UPEI.


Schedule

A look at this week’s UPEI Panthers varsity sports schedule.

Tonight’s game

Men’s hockey

7 p.m. – UNB at UPEI.

Friday’s Game

Men’s hockey

7 p.m. – UPEI at Moncton

Saturday’s Games

Women’s basketball

6 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.

Women’s hockey

7 p.m. – UPEI at Moncton.

Men’s basketball

8 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.

Sunday’s Games

Women’s basketball

1 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.

Men’s basketball

3 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI

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