SAINT JOHN – The veterans came to play for the Saint John Sea Dogs on Saturday night.
Stephen MacAulay led the way with two goals and an assist, Jonathan Huberdeau and Kevin Gagne each recorded a goal and an assist, and Pierre Durepos recorded two helpers as the Sea Dogs defeated the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 4-1 on Saturday night at Harbour Station.
Goaltender Sebastien Auger made 25 saves in the win.
Saint John, playing their first home game in roughly forever, has now won back-to-back games. The win improved to Sea Dogs back to the .500 mark with a 12-12-0-0 record. They host the Baie-Comeau Drakkar tomorrow afternoon.
The Sea Dogs grabbed a 3-0 lead after one and took a 4-0 lead early in the second. They then cruised to a victory, getting some revenge on the Screaming Eagles team that beat them last week.
Cape Breton’s only goal came from Jakub Culek. David Honzik could not contain the Sea Dogs like he has in the past, allowing four goals on 24 shots in the loss.
Stephen MacAulay and Loic Leduc headed to the box at 3:44 following some rough stuff. Soon after, Jonathan Huberdeau centered the puck for Ryan Tesink but he couldn’t get a shot off.
Stephen MacAulay made it 1-0 Saint John at 8:05. Jonathan Huberdeau was along the boards and fed MacAulay who then beat David Honzik to open the scoring.
Jakub Izacky showed off some smooth moves moments later when entering the zone, sliding the puck through a couple Cape Breton defensemen but couldn’t get a shot off.
Huberdeau gave the Sea Dogs a 2-0 advantage at 11:25. Durepos fed the Sea Dogs captain who was parked at the side of the net to double Saint John’s lead.
Olivier LeBlanc was hit hard from behind by Raphael Corriveau at 12:20. Corriveau was given a five-minute major and game misconduct, but because Aidan Kelly picked up a roughing penalty on the play, the Sea Dogs only had a three-minute man advantage. LeBlanc would be okay which was the only good news to come out of that power play.
Late in the frame, Sea Dogs goaltender Sebastien Auger made a nice glove save on a point shot that went through some traffic.
MacAulay netted his second of the period at 19:55. The 20-year old ripped a shot past Honzik from just below the faceoff dot to make it 3-0 Sea Dogs.
Shots in the first were 10-8 in favour of the Sea Dogs.
Kevin Gagne literally fired the puck through the net at 4:07 to give Saint John a 4-0 lead. He wound up and fired a shot past Honzik and straight through everything to extend the Sea Dogs’ lead. Play originally continued but was reviewed and called a good goal.
The Sea Dogs continued to buzz after the goal. MacAulay and Tesink both had decent scoring chances but could not connect.
Some rough stuff in front of Auger saw Cape Breton awarded a power play at 9:39. A massive turnover in the Eagles zone gave Oliver Cooper a great shorthanded chance but he fired wide. The Eagles had just one good scoring opportunity on the power play and Auger stopped that.
Jakub Culek got the Eagles on the board at 12:59. Cole Murphy made a great pass from behind the net to a wide open Culek in the slot. He beat Auger to make it a 4-1 game.
The Eagles headed to a four-minute power play at 16:57 because of a Jakub Izacky high sticking penalty. Nothing happened.
Shots were 13-5 Cape Breton in the second.
MacAulay had a great chance just seconds into the period but Honzik got part of his glove on the puck to keep it out.
Izacky came out of the box and headed back into it 12 seconds later to put Cape Breton back on the power play. At 3:31 the Sea Dogs went to a power play of their own but nothing happened.
Near the 13-minute mark, Noah Zilbert turned on the jets and cut into the crease area but couldn’t get much of a shot off.
Some four-on-four action took place at 8:54 as Billy Hartly and Oliver Cooper headed to the box. During the four-on-four, Izacky tried to feed Huberdeau on a two-on-one but the pass was deflected.
Following some clock difficulties in the final 10 seconds, the score would end 4-1 Saint John.
Shots in the third period were 9-5 in favour of the Sea Dogs.
Saint John went 0-for-2 on the power play while Cape Breton went 0-for-4.
NOTES: See Sea Dogs Postscript tomorrow on SN.
NEXT GAME: The Sea Dogs take on the Baie-Comeau Drakkar tomorrow at 3pm at Harbour Station.
Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation
Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation