The Swift Current Innovation Credit Union U18 AAA Wildcats dropped a 6-3 decision to the Saskatoon Stars on Saturday in a neutral site game at Martensville for the community's Hockey Day in Saskatchewan celebrations.
Caitlyn Perlinger opened the scoring for the Wildcats 5:04 into the first period, but Kolbee Ashe responded for the Stars just 24 seconds later and Mackenzie Mawson put Saskatoon up 2-1 at the 7:26 mark. Perlinger tied it up with her second of the game on the power play with 4:05 left in the first period, but Ashe scored her second goal with 94 seconds left to give Saskatoon a 3-2 lead after 20 minutes.
The Stars scored two more unanswered goals from Grace Millar and Keyra Buziak, then Calla Kampen got a power play goal to bring the Wildcats back within two before Ashe completed the hat trick with 4:57 remaining in the middle frame to make it 6-3 for the Stars, and that score would hold up through a scoreless third period.
Paige Fischer made 47 saves in the loss as the Stars outshot Swift Current 49-22.
The Wildcats (15-6-2-0) fall to third in the league standings with the Stars taking the three points and taking over second place. Swift Current will look to regain second spot and gain ground on first-place Regina when the two teams meet again today at Merlis Belsher Place in Saskatoon.