It would turn out to be one of the biggest wins in franchise history.
The victory apparently sparked the Sea Dogs hockey club as they would not lose a game until December 12, 2009 where they fell to the Wildcats at the Moncton Coliseum. In total, the Sea Dogs would win 22 straight games – and all began on this night one year ago.
From the Sea Dogs’ Wikipedia page via a QMJHL press release:
During their streak, which extended from October 17 until December 12, Saint John scored 107 goals while allowing a mere 44. The offense was led mainly by Mike Hoffman (45 points and 8 game-winning goals), Nicholas Petersen (49), Michael Kirkpatrick (44) and rookie Stanislav Galiev (40 points). The strong defensive brigade saw its veteran, Yann Sauvé, register a solid +24 differential in addition to gathering 16 points. In nets, veteran Marc-Antoine Gélinas won 15 games, allowing a meager 1.83 goals per game along with a .933 save percentage. Karel St-Laurent posted the other seven wins. Following their incredible run, the Sea Dogs have taken hold of the top spot in the QMJHL overall standings, 9 points ahead of Drummondville. Their recent string of success places the franchise amongst the best in QMJHL history.During the streak, there were some incredible moments that resulted in some heart pumping among Sea Dogs fans. The streak even made an October game in Baie-Comeau one for the ages.
With two seconds to go in the game we already had “Sea Dogs lose 2-1 in Baie-Comeau” typed into Twitter and we were ready to press the Tweet button. But with the faceoff in the Saint John zone, Michael Kirkpatrick shot the puck off the draw and beat Drakkar net minder (and former Sea Dogs prospect) Nathan Dunnett five-hole to tie the game. Just to make things even more stressful, Karel St. Laurent allowed all three goals in the shootout before Kirkpatrick finally ended it in round five.
The streak gave the Sea Dogs a substantial lead in the Atlantic division and the overall QMJHL standings. Saint John would never look back, claiming both titles last season.
Another interesting note is that Saint John did not lose a game in November. Their last November loss came on November 30, 2008 in Rimouski where the team lost 8-4.
Today, as fate would have it, the Sea Dogs won their fifth straight game with a 4-2 win over the Victoriaville Tigres.
Photo Credit: David Connell