By Tim Lumsden
FINAL: Val-d’Or 7, Saint John 1
SAINT JOHN - After Friday's nail biter of a game, the Saint John Sea Dogs returned to Harbour Station on Saturday to face off against The Val-d'Or Foreurs.
Alex Fournier started in goal for Saint John while Francois Tremblay took the net for Val-d'Or.
As usual, Saint John led with the first penalty of the game. Oliver Cooper skated off for a tripping penalty at 1:24.
Val D'Or started off the scoring as Anthony Mantha scored an unassisted goal at 5:34.
It was not looking like it was Fournier's night as Val-d'Or's 3rd shot on goal of the game resulted in their 2nd goal, again by Mantha, but this time assisted by Vincent Dunn.
Mere seconds later, it was 3-0 for Val-d'Or as Mantha scored a natural hat trick at 8:30, assisted by Julien Leduc and Cedrick Henley.
11:10 saw Val-d'Or score their 4th of the night as Anton Zlobin put one in the Sea Dogs net. Samuel Henley and Guillaume Gelinas each took an assist.
The Sea Dogs saw a break at 12:46 as Anthony Mantha was sent off for hooking. The power play didn't grab them a goal but just as the Mantha penalty ended, Brett Hester was called for slashing and Saint John continued with the advantage.
The Dogs would go scoreless that period as the teams headed to the dressing room with Saint John down 4 points.
Sebastien Auger started off the second period in net for the Sea Dogs.
Five minutes into the period the Foreurs were shown by Auger that the game had changed and they would have to work harder if they wanted any more points, shutting down all attempts to score.
Val ‘Or charged 4-on-1 and broke through Auger's defences at 12:40 as Anton Zlobin scored the 5th goal of the night, increasing their lead 5-0. Vincent Dunn and Guillaume Gelinas grabbed assists on the goal.
On the high of their goal, came a penalty for Guillaume Rioux-Legault at 13:17 for tripping.
Fans were finally given their goal as Stephen MacAulay put the Dogs on the board thanks to an assist from Jonathan Huberdeau at 14:55. This raised the score to 5-1, still for Val D'Or, but it started to close the gap.
Shots on goal for the first two periods were 22-28, in favour of Val D'Or.
The period started with a bang as a brawl broke out at 2:52. When the dust cleared, penalties were handed out to Michael Mastrangelo. He earned two minutes for roughing, two for unsportsmanlike conduct and a 10-minute misconduct for resisting an official. Jeremie Fraser from the Foreurs skated to the box with only a two minute roughing penalty.
Val-d'Or took advantage of the penalties as Vincent Dunn shot one past Auger at 4:43, assisted by Artem Sergeev and Michael Beaudry. This expanded their lead to 6-1.
Tempers were running hot as yet another rumble broke out in front of the benches. This time, Ryan Tesink was given some time to cool down as he was sent off for roughing. MacAulay also grabbed a seat for roughing as did Thierry Comtois from Val D'Or.
The third period became less hockey and more MMA as Devon Oliver-Dares and Mason Gray decided to dance at 9:16. Oliver-Dares was given five for fighting and 10 for unsportsmanlike conduct. That would finish his night as he was sent back to the dressing room. Gray received five for fighting as well. Jessy Morin from the Foreurs was handed an unsportsmanlike conduct-miscoduct as a result of that altercation.
Moments later, a seven magically popped up on the scoreboard as the Foreurs’ Michael Beaudry sent one by Auger at 10:19.
Brett Hester pulled a two minute penalty at 14:37 for interference. That would be the final penalty of the night as the game finished. Saint John now prepares for a series of away games. Fans hope the bad luck will not follow them on the road.
Final shots on goal 37-31 in favour of Val-d’Or.
NOTES: See Sea Dogs Postscript tomorrow on SN.
NEXT GAME: Saint John's next game is in Quebec, against the Remparts, on October 17th. Puck drops at 8:00pm AST.
Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation