Sunday, September 23, 2018

RECAP: Sea Dogs win 5-4

FINAL: Moncton 4, Saint John 5
SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs played yet another back-and-forth game on Sunday afternoon - but this time they came out on the winning end.

Just like Friday night against the Halifax Mooseheads, the Sea Dogs got themselves into a hole in the first period, going down 2-0. But, like Friday, Saint John rebounded with a strong second period and straightened things out from there.

16-year-old rookie Josh Lawrence was the major story, recording a hat trick and an assist in just his second career QMJHL game. The Fredericton native now has four goals and two assists in two contests.

Jeremie Jacob and Maxim Cajkovic also scored for Saint John. William Poirier added three assists and Alex D'Orio made 34 saves in the win.

Moncton had a pair of goals from Elliot Desnoyers and singles from Jordan Spence and Dylan Seitz. Charles-Antoine Lavallee, in his first QMJHL start, allowed five goals on 35 shots in the loss.

Through two games, the Sea Dogs have shown that they can be competitive and very entertaining. They'll face a tough test on Wednesday in Charlottetown and then will play Moncton on Friday. The Dogs and 'Cats have played several times over the past month and most of those games have been very entertaining. Hopefully that will continue this week.

Game Day 2: vs Wildcats

SAINT JOHN - After a thrilling season opening game, the Saint John Sea Dogs will try to do one better this afternoon - and try and pick up their first win of the season.

The Sea Dogs host the rival Moncton Wildcats today at 2 p.m. at Harbour Station. The two teams met four times in the pre-season with each squad winning twice. All four games were fairly entertaining, and there is good reason to believe this could be a very fun season series.

The Wildcats opened up the year with a win on Thursday night in Bathurst and have not played since.

TV/Radio/Webcast: Rogers TV/Sea Dogs Radio/QMJHL Live

Records: The Sea Dogs are 0-0-1-0 this season (5th Maritimes, 13th overall) while the Wildcats are 1-0-0-0 (second Maritimes, seventh overall).

2017-18 records: Saint John finished last overall in the QMJHL standings with a 14-43-9-2 record for 39 points while Moncton finished 14th overall with a 27-33-5-3 record for 62 points.

Last games: The Sea Dogs are coming off a 5-4 overtime loss to the Halifax Mooseheads on Friday night at Harbour Station. Robbie Burt, Brady Burns, Josh Lawrence and William Poirier scored for Saint John. Alex D'Orio made 31 stops in the loss. The Wildcats are coming off a 3-1 win in Bathurst on Thursday night. Dylan Seitz, Tristan DeJong and Mika Cyr scored for Moncton. Francis Leclerc made 33 saves in the win.

2017-18 head-to-head: The Sea Dogs were 3-4-2-0 against the Wildcats last season while Moncton went 6-1-1-1 against Saint John.

Last meeting: Sept 16 in pre-season play where the Wildcats defeated the Sea Dogs 7-3 in Bouctouche. Maxim Cajkovic scored all three Saint John goals. Elliot Desnoyers and Nicolas Kingsbury-Fournier scored twice for Moncton while singles came from Jeremy McKenna, Dylan Seitz and Brady Pataki. Stewart Bagnell allowed seven goals on 39 shots in the loss. Francis Leclerc allowed three goals on 28 shots in the win.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Report: Dogs to trade Safin to Mooseheads

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SAINT JOHN - Ostap Safin is headed to the Halifax Mooseheads, reports TVA Sports.

Mikael Lalancette reports that the Sea Dogs forward, who was sent back to junior by the Edmonton Oilers last week, will be traded to the Memorial Cup hosts in a deal that has not yet been confirmed.
Safin, 19, had 26 goals and 31 assists in 61 games with the Sea Dogs last season. He would have been a big help to the Sea Dogs this season - but trading him makes much more sense. The Dogs drafted two quality imports this year who fit their rebuild much better (and if the Dogs had kept Safin, they would have had to let one go). The return Safin will get - even if it isn't a whole lot - is better than nothing.

What the Sea Dogs get in return is the big question. The team doesn't have a lot of options as there are few teams with vacant - or willing to make vacant - import spots.

The Mooseheads have made the most sense as a trading partner for some time. Halifax has one official import on their active roster - forward Marcel Barinka. If Filip Zadina is returned by the Detroit Red Wings, he and Safin would make a solid duo (the two have played together with the Czech Republic national junior team in the past).

The Sea Dogs host the Moncton Wildcats tomorrow at 2 p.m. Their next meeting with the Mooseheads is on Oct. 12 at Harbour Station.

RECAP: Sea Dogs lose 5-4 (OT)

FINAL: Halifax 5, Saint John 4 (OT)
SAINT JOHN - If anything, the Saint John Sea Dogs proved they'll be entertaining to watch this season.

The Sea Dogs opened the 2018-19 season with a back-and-forth, hard fought 5-4 overtime loss to the Halifax Mooseheads on Friday night at Harbour Station. Sure, the Mooseheads were missing several regulars, but this young Sea Dogs team showed that they'll be able to give some teams a good run.

Saint John looked a bit unorganized and nervous in the first period and trailed 2-0. But the Sea Dogs turned things around at intermission and the remainder of the game was fairly evenly played. The point was well deserved.

The Sea Dogs' youth had a good night with Josh Lawrence putting up a goal and an assist; Brady Burns recording a goal; and Jeremy Poirier looking like a veteran on the blue line. Returnees William Poirier and Robbie Burt scored Saint John's other goals. Alex D'Orio made 31 saves in the loss.

Arnaud Durandeau scored twice for Halifax while singles came from Gavin Hart, Justin Barron and Patrick Kyte. Alexis Gravel made 34 saves in the win.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Game Day 1: vs Mooseheads

SAINT JOHN - A new era of Saint John Sea Dogs hockey begins tonight at Harbour Station.

With a new young core of players in place, this season marks year one of a rebuild (if you look at last season as year zero). This will, if history repeats itself, be the beginning of a climb back to a league championship in a couple years.

The Sea Dogs will be tested right away, opening the 2018-19 season with a home date against the Memorial Cup hosting Halifax Mooseheads. Even with some regulars still missing, the Moose will dress a much more experienced lineup. Game time tonight is 7 p.m. at Harbour Station.

TV/Radio/Webcast: RogersTV/Sea Dogs Radio/QMJHL Live

Records: This is the first game of the season for both clubs. Last season, Saint John finished last overall in the QMJHL standings with a 14-43-9-2 record for 39 points while Halifax finished fourth overall with a record of 43-18-6-1 for 93 points.

Last games: The Sea Dogs are coming off a 7-3 loss to the Moncton Wildcats in Bouctouche this past Sunday. Maxim Cajkovic scored all three of Saint John's goals. Stewart Bagnell made 32 saves in the loss. The Mooseheads are coming off a 2-1 overtime loss to the Moncton Wildcats on Saturday at the Halifax Forum. Raphael Lavoie scored the Mooseheads' lone goal. Cole McLaren made 47 stops in the loss.

2017-18 head-to-head: The Sea Dogs were 2-5-1-0 against the Mooseheads last season while Halifax went 6-2-0-0 against Saint John.

Last meeting: March 14 at Scotiabank Centre where the Mooseheads defeated the Sea Dogs 7-3. Benoit Olivier-Groulx scored twice for Halifax while singles came from Jared McIsaac, Brett Crossley, Ben Higgins Barrett Dachyshyn and Joel Bishop. Saint John goals came from Cedric Pare, Aiden MacIntosh and Ben Reid. Alexis Gravel made 28 saves in the win. Tommy DaSilva allowed six goals on 31 shots in 40 minutes of play while Stewart Bagnell allowed one in the third period.

Ex-Sea Dogs on the Mooseheads: None.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

RECAP: Sea Dogs lose 7-3

FINAL: Saint John 3, Moncton 7
BOUCTOUCHE – The Saint John Sea Dogs' defensive struggles continued on Sunday afternoon.

For a third straight pre-season game, the Sea Dogs had a difficult time keeping the puck out of their own net, falling 7-3 to the Moncton Wildcats at Bouctouche's JK Irving Centre.

The loss comes after a 7-0 loss to the Charlottetown Islanders last weekend and a 7-6 shootout loss on home ice to the Wildcats on Thursday. Saint John ends the pre-season on a three-game losing skid.

The Dogs are still missing their best defender - goaltender Alex D'Orio - due to Pittsburgh Penguins rookie camp. He'll be a difference maker this season - and he'll have to be at many times.

Stewart Bagnell allowed seven goals on 39 shots in the loss. Maxim Cajkovic scored all three of Saint John's goals - and could have easily had two more if not for some fine saves by the Wildcats netminder.

Moncton had a pair of goals from both Elliot Desnoyers and Nicolas Kingsbury-Fournier. Solo markers came from Brady Pataki, Dylan Seitz and Jeremy McKenna. Francis Leclerc made 25 saves in the win.