Friday, April 15, 2011

PRE-GAME: Game Five at Victoriaville Tigres

President’s Cup Playoffs - Round 2, Game 5
Saint John Sea Dogs vs Victoriaville Tigres
Tonight, April 15, 2011 at 8:00 pm
Colisee Desjardins

The top-seeded Saint John Sea Dogs currently lead the 11th-seeded Victoriaville Tigres 3-1 in the best-of-seven quarter-final playoff series.

VICTORIAVILLE, Que. – The Saint John Sea Dogs can book their trip to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League semi-finals with a win tonight in Game Five of their quarter-final series against the Victoriaville Tigres.

Saint John currently leads the series 3-1 following an entertaining 5-4 overtime victory in Game Four on Wednesday at Colisee Desjardins. The Tigres scored first but the Sea Dogs quickly took a 2-1 lead. The rest of the match would be back-and-forth with Victoriaville always finding a way to even the game up.

Despite a resilient effort, Jonathan Huberdeau ended any chances of a Victoriaville win when he tapped home a Stanislav Galiev rebound to give the Dogs an extra time win. Also scoring for Saint John was Jason Cameron, Eric Gelinas, Stephan MacAulay, and Tomas Jurco. The Tigres had markers from Phillip Danault, Benjamin Laliberte, Philippe Maillet, and Brandon Hynes.

Both goaltenders were excellent as they have been all series long. Jacob DeSerres made 24 saves for the win while 17-year old import David Honzik made 39 stops in the loss.

The Tigres will likely come out flying tonight as they have for much of the series. Saint John will have to match their intensity level and play a solid game. One of the issues in Game Four was that the Sea Dogs continued to let Victoriaville get back in the match and never took a two-goal lead at any point.

"They're not going to lay down and our team will be ready to play and hopefully wrap it up, but it won't be easy," Sea Dogs head coach Gerard Gallant said to "It will be the toughest one."

It has been a hard fought series with two of the four games being decided by one goal. Whatever it is that Victoriaville is doing – it’s working. After sweeping the sixth-seeded Acadie-Bathurst Titan in the first round, the 11th-seeded Tigres are have done extremely well against the nation’s top-ranked team.

If the Sea Dogs are unable to end this series tonight, Game Six is Monday at Harbour Station.


VictoriavilleSaint John
Record35-29-1-3 (3rd East)58-7-1-2 (1st Maritimes)
Home Record- - -32-0-1-1
Road Record19-13-1-1- - -
Last 105-5-0-08-2-0-0
Goals For256324
Goals Against240165
Goals/Game3.76 (6th)4.76 (1st)
Goals Against/Game3.53 (12th)2.43 (1st)
Shots/Game31.16 (6th)36.81 (1st)
Shots Against/Game30.24 (10th)26.96 (5th)
Overall PP22.1% (11th)25.1% (6th)
Home PP- - -24.4% (8th)
Road PP25.4% (6th)- - -
Overall PK75.0% (16th)83.7% (1st)
Home PK- - -86.1% (1st)
Road PK75.9% (14th)- - -
PIM/GAME14.0 (11th)13.1 (13th)

Game One – Tigres 1, Sea Dogs 4
Game Two – Tigres 3, Sea Dogs 3
Game Three – Sea Dogs 6, Tigres 3
Game Four – Sea Dogs 5, Tigres 4 (OT)
Game Five - Friday, April 15, at 8:00 pm at Colisee Desjardins
*Game Six – Monday, April 18 at 7:00 pm at Harbour Station
*Game Seven – Tuesday, April 19 at 7:00 pm at Harbour Station

*if necessary

The human stop sign, David Honzik, has been Victoriaville’s best player so far in the post-season. Scott Briggs had a solid feature on the import netminder in yesterday’s Telegraph-Journal.

"He's used to big games,'' Tigres head coach Yanick Jean said. "When everybody's emotion goes high, his kind of goes low. He's more focused and more in his own world (under pressure).''

Patrick King of Rogers Sportsnet had a good article on the surprising Tigres yesterday.

Brandon Hynes on goaltender David Honzik:

"Since he's came here he's just been on a constant climb," Hynes said. "I've never seen a goalie like this in my career. He gives us a chance to win."

Jonathan Huberdeau’s goal streak was in jeopardy of ending on Wednesday night, but a clutch overtime marker kept the streak going.

Huberdeau has now scored in seven straight playoff games. The only game he failed to score in was the opening match of round one against the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles, a game in which he had four assists.

In just eight playoff games, the 17-year old sniper has 10 goals and nine helpers.

The Lewiston MAINEiacs have been a pleasant surprise in the second round of the 2011 President’s Cup Playoffs. The eighth-seeded Maineiacs are one-win away from pulling off a large upset over the second-seeded Montreal Juniors.

Lewiston currently leads the series 3-1 with Game Five tonight at 8:05 pm in Verdun.

A Lewiston win tonight will propel them into the semi-finals. With the team being the lowest seeded team remaining (assuming Saint John moves on, eliminating Victoriaville), they would play Saint John in the third round.

Shawinigan at Quebec - 7:00 PM EDT
Saint John at Victoriaville - 7:00 PM EDT
Lewiston at Montreal - 7:05 PM EDT
Gatineau at Drummondville - 7:30 PM EDT

Venue: Colisee Desjardins
Capacity: 2,933
Reg. Season Average Attendance: 2,551
Playoff Average Attendance: 2,484
QMJHL Arena Guide

Radio (Sea Dogs): News 88.9 FM
Live Web Feed: Telus
Television: None
Post-Game Coverage: Station Nation, Telegraph-Journal, La Nouvelle Union
Live Coverage: There will be no SN Live Coverage of tonight’s game.

If Victoriaville wins tonight, Game Six will be Monday night at 7:00 pm at Harbour Station.

Photo Credits: Tigres website, Google

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