FINAL: Bathurst 2, Saint John 7
SAINT JOHN –Make it nine straight wins for the Saint John Sea Dogs.
The Sea Dogs scored three times in each of the final two periods to defeat the Acadie-Bathurst Titan 7-2 on Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action. The win gave Saint John their ninth straight victory and 39th of the season.
Stanislav Galiev, playing in his first home game since September, had two goals. Charlie Coyle, Jonathan Huberdeau, Zack Phillips, Spencer MacDonald, and Maxime Villemaire added singles. Coyle and Nathan Beaulieu each chipped in with two assists. Overall, 11 different Sea Dog players had points on Sunday.
Sebastien Auger had another strong performance in goal, making 22 saves for the win.
The Titan, who were missing their entire top line, had both of their goals come from Etienne Salvail. Christophe Lalancette assisted on both markers.
Jacob Brennan made a few big saves in net for Bathurst but couldn’t handle Saint John’s firepower on this night, allowing seven goals on 36 shots.
Despite leading just 1-0 after one, the Dogs had a strong opening frame and outshot the Titan 10-5. In the second, Bathurst would tie it at 1-1 before Saint John scored three straight goals. The Dogs would add another three in the final stanza.
This win capped off a strong weekend for the Sea Dogs as they also defeated the PEI Rocket 5-0 on Saturday. It seems like their offense has finally found their groove.
The Dogs will travel to PEI to face the Rocket again on Wednesday before hosting the Quebec Remparts on Friday in a nationally televised game.
Saint John headed to the power play at 2:30. At 2:57, Charlie Coyle made a cross ice pass to Zack Phillips who had an open net to give Saint John a 1-0 lead.
The Dogs headed back to the man advantage at 4:13. They had some good power play pressure but were unable to convert.
Oliver Cooper headed to the box at 6:51. On the power play, Jordan Murray blasted a shot from the point that just sailed wide.
The Sea Dogs headed back to the power play at 8:59. Jonathan Huberdeau had a breakaway on the ensuing man advantage but missed wide. Then Zack Phillips was in front but couldn’t connect.
Back at even strength, Danick Gauthier made some ice moves before passing over to Tomas Jurco who just missed wide.
Bathurst had a decent chance late as Christophe Lalancette sent a shot on net. It was bobbled a bit by Sebastien Auger but he managed to glove it.
Shots were 10-5 Saint John in the first period.
The Titan tied it at 1-1 at 3:40. Etienne Salvail grabbed a loose puck in front of the net and spun it into the goal to tie things up.
The Sea Dogs retook the lead at 5:01. Phillips made some unreal moves after he crossed the line, firing a hard shot on Jacob Brennan. The puck was loose behind the Bathurst ‘tender and pushed in by Maxime Villemaire to give the Dogs a 2-1 lead.
Saint John made it 3-1 at 5:46. Jonathan Huberdeau came down the wing and tried to centre it but the puck went in past Brennan to extend Saint John’s lead.
Just after the goal, Bathurst had a two-on-one opportunity but fired it wide.
The Sea Dogs made it 4-1 at 12:36. Stanislav Galiev passed over to Tomas Jurco. The Slovakian then fired a pass through the top of the crease and back to Galiev. The Russian had an open net to score his first goal since September.
A great fight took place 13:06 as Spencer MacDonald and Breant Turnbull dropped the gloves. Both players were throwing some bombs. MacDonald left with a blood stained jersey.
A few minutes after the fight, Gauthier fired a low shot off the post.
The Titan got back within two at 18:57. A pass from the corner found Salvail in the high slot who fired a hard shot past Auger to make it 4-2 after two.
Shots were 13-10 Sea Dogs in the middle frame.
Mirko Hoefflin had a chance early in the third but was denied by the pad of Auger.
The Sea Dogs extended their lead to 5-1 at 1:58 of the third. Beaulieu fired a bomb from the point that was tipped by Coyle.
Saint John headed to the power play at 7:31. On the man advantage, Huberdeau had a great chance at the side of the crease but Brennan made a nice move to snag it with the glove.
The Sea Dogs headed to another power play at 10:11 but it was short lived as Huberdeau headed off at 11:20. Nothing happened during the four-on-four sequence.
Galiev scored his second of the game 13:34. The wrist is looking okay.
The Sea Dogs made it 7-2 at 18:31. A pass from Huberdeau found Spencer MacDonald in the slot who ripped the puck past Brennan for his third of the year. That gave MacDonald the Gordie Howe Hat Trick.
Nick Egan and Ian Saab dropped the gloves in the final minute for a spirited scrap.
Shots in the third were 13-9 Saint John.
The Sea Dogs went 1-for-5 on the power play while the Titan went 0-for-2.
NOTES: See Sea Dogs Postscript tomorrow on SN.