Saturday, March 15, 2014

RECAP: Closing Time. Dogs Lose 6-2.

FINAL: Saint John 2, Charlottetown 6
CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI – A long 2013-14 season is over for the Saint John Sea Dogs.

The rebuilding team finishes the campaign with a 19-44-2-3 record following a 6-2 loss to the Charlottetown Islanders at Eastlink Centre on Saturday night. The team finishes last in the Telus Maritimes Division and 17th overall in the 18-team Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, missing the playoffs for the third time in team history and first since 2006-07.

The final result of Saint John’s season isn’t an overly surprising one. This team began their rebuild last season and continued into this year. But there is hope. The 2013-14 edition of this team showcased plenty of promising talent for the next few years and they’ll have high picks in this summer’s drafts. It’s hard to say what this team will look like come opening night in September, but it’s sure to be one boosted with new additions.

Like Friday in Halifax, the Sea Dogs got behind in the first and could never climb back. Spencer Smallman had Saint John’s two goals while Antoine Landry made 31 stops in the loss.

Zach Beaton had two goals for the Islanders while singles came from David Henley, Josh Shatford, Luc Deschenes, and Daniel Sprong. Mason McDonald made 35 saves in the win.

Charlottetown opened the scoring on their first shot of the game. David Henley fired a slap shot from inside the line that beat Antoine Landry at 4:12 to make it 1-0 Isles.

A few minutes later, the Dogs thought they had scored on a scramble in the crease but it was called no goal.

Charlottetown went to the power play at 8:25 but did nothing.

The Islanders made it 2-0 at 11:01 as Josh Shatford scored on a wraparound. Then 36 seconds later Zach Beaton scored on a wrist shot from the inner rim of the circle to make it 3-0 just like that.

Saint John went to the power play at 12:41. At 13:39, Thomas Chabot fed Spencer Smallman who scored to make it a 3-1 game.

Lukas Walter and Mike DiPaolo dropped the gloves at 13:57 had a fairly lengthy fight.

The Dogs had a brief five-on-three man advantage at 16:29. They had some pressure applied in the offensive zone but couldn’t create a lot of quality scoring chances.

Despite being down 3-1, the Dogs outshot the Isles 18-8 in the first.

It was all Charlottetown early in the second thanks to a couple of power play opportunities. Shots were 9-0 in favour of the Isles at one point.

Matthew Highmore fed Chabot in the slot but was stopped by Mason McDonald on one of Saint John’s few good chances in the period.

The Islanders went to the power play at 10:16. With Alexandre Goulet providing a screen, Luc Deschenes fired a shot from the point that got past Landry to make it a 4-1 contest.

The Dogs then went to the man advantage at 12:55 but couldn’t get any good chances.

The Isles took a 5-1 lead at 15:21 as Daniel Sprong found a loose puck in front of the crease and put it in.

Each team had another power play before the period ended but nothing happened.

Shots in the second period were 22-7 in favour of the Isles.

Mathieu Joseph and Shatford exchanged breakaways early in the third but neither could connect.

The Islanders took a 6-1 lead at 4:03 as Beaton scored on a slap shot from the side boards.

A bunch of power plays for each team then happened. Whatever.

At 13:22, Smallman scored from the slot to make it a 6-2 contest. That would be as close as the Sea Dogs would get in this game.

Shots in the third were 12-7 in favour of the Dogs.

Saint John went 1-for-9 on the power play while Charlottetown went 1-for-5.

UP NEXT: The Sea Dogs awards banquet is on Tuesday at the Delta Brunswick.

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