FINAL: Saint John 2, Victoriaville 4
VICTORIAVILLE – The Saint John Sea Dogs kicked off their Quebec road trip on a losing note.
The Sea Dogs dropped the fourth straight game in a 4-2 loss to the Victoriaville Tigres in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action on Thursday night. The Tigres, meanwhile, ended a four-game losing streak with the win.
Saint John has had some wild games in Victoriaville over the years but this one was kind of uneventful. The team on the longer losing streak was able to score more goals than the team with the shorter losing streak. The end.
Nathan Noel and Spencer Smallman scored for Saint John. Sebastien Auger allowed three goals on 43 shots in the defeat.
Mathieu Ayotte, Ross Johnston, Angelo Miceli, and Mark Tremaine scored for the Tigres. Brandon Whitney made 28 saves in the win.
Saint John’s road trip continues tomorrow in Sherbrooke and on Saturday in Gatineau.
Just 1:02 in, Mathieu Ayotte scored some goal to give the Tigres a 1-0 advantage. The goal would be reviewed and was declared a legit goal by the officials.
The Sea Dogs went to the power play at 1:37 after Mark Trickett high sticked Nathan Noel. The Dogs applied some okay pressure but failed to create any solid scoring opportunities.
Saint John went to another power play at 6:27 when Tommy Veilleux was sent off for interference. Early in the man advantage, Noel sped past the Tigres defense but couldn’t get a great shot off. Carl-Antoine Delisle had a good shorthanded chance on a partial break but could not score as he crashed into Sebastien Auger.
Victoriaville had some pressure on following that Saint John power play but could not score.
At 10:39, the Dogs went to yet another power play. This time Saint John would connect as Spencer Smallman fed Noel who beat Brandon Whitney at 11:38 to make it a 1-1 match.
But the Tigres would quickly retake the lead. At 13:02, Ross Johnston managed to jam the puck past Auger to give the home team a 2-1 lead.
A Tigres turnover in the high slot gave Stephen Anderson a nice chance but was denied by Whitney. Noel also had a good scoring opportunity but had his shot blocked.
Matthew Highmore went to the box at 15:16 to give the Tigres their first power play of the game. Delisle had a good chance at the side of the net as he tried to jam the puck in but Auger stopped him.
Shots were 14-12 Tigres in the first.
Smallman tied the game at 2:20 of the second. Noel had the first chance, Thomas Chabot the second, and then finally Smallman was able to put the puck in and make it a 2-2 game.
Saint John went to the power play at 3:34 as Trickett headed off again. Smallman had another good chance as his wrist shot hit the post.
The Tigres had a couple a good chances a few minutes later. Delisle fed an open Philippe Hudon but he sent the puck high. Then, Delisle had an open net with Auger down but sent the puck high as well.
At 8:15, Ross Johnston and Lukas Walter dropped the gloves for a spirited tilt where some hard punches were landed.
Victoriaville retook the lead as their leading scorer, Angelo Miceli, netted his 16th to make it 3-2 at 9:30.
Kelly Bent headed off at 12:03 for slashing. The Tigres had some good power play pressure and Auger made a couple of good saves but could not connect.
Late in the frame, Anderson stole the puck in front but sent a shot wide. Later on, Michael Abbott was in front but was stopped by Whitney. Saint John had some good offensive zone pressure in the final minute.
Shots were 13-12 Saint John in the middle stanza.
The Dogs were awarded a power play at 5:20 but did nothing.
Later on, Boudreau had a break for the Tigres but was stopped.
Victoriaville went to the power play at 7:45 as Abbott went off. The Tigres had some chances and pressure on but could not add to their lead.
The Tigres went to another man advantage at 11:47 with Noah Zilbert in the box. Victoriaville had some good pressure applied again but failed to score. Auger made a big save early on.
The Dogs pulled Auger in the final minute. Abbott wound up for a point shot but it was blocked nicely by Mark Tremaine. The puck cleared the zone and allowed Tremaine to hit the empty net with four seconds left and clinch a Victoriaville victory.
Shots in the third were 18-5 in favour of the Tigres and 44-30 Victoriaville overall.
Saint John went 1-for-5 on the power play while Victoriaville went 0-for-4.
NEXT GAME: The Sea Dogs are in Sherbrooke to take on the Phoenix tomorrow night at 8:00pm.