FINAL: Cape Breton 3, Saint John 6
The Screaming Eagles fell 6-3 to the Saint John Sea Dogs in an afternoon tilt, dropping their 15th consecutive road match. The Eagles certainly had their chances though, outshooting the Sea Dogs 29-21 overall and 14-4 in the second period alone.
Saint John was quite opportunistic with their chances, scoring on three of six shots in the first period. They were able to take advantage of a few defensive miscues by Cape Breton and took the game over in the final half of the third period.
Adam Marsh had two goals for the Sea Dogs while singles came from Nathan Noel, Mathieu Joseph, Spencer Smallman and Matthew Highmore. Sebastien Auger made 26 saves in the win.
Jason Bell, Kyle Farrell and Evgeny Svechnikov scored for the Eagles. Francois Brassard made 15 saves in the loss.
Noel opened the scoring 4:00 into the game as he sped down the wing past the Cape Breton defense and beat Brassard five-hole.
Saint John made it 2-0 at 7:34. Samuel Dove-McFalls' initial shot hit the post hard but the rebound found Joseph. The Dogs forward fired the puck past Brassard to double the Sea Dogs’ lead.
Mitchell Dempsey went to the box for checking from behind at 14:12. On the man advantage, Cape Breton committed a brutal turnover as a pass found an open Highmore on the wing. He fed the puck to a wide open Smallman in front of the net who beat Brassard with a move to his backhand to give the Dogs a 3-0 lead.
Despite trailing 3-0, the Screaming Eagles were able to outshoot the Sea Dogs 10-6 in the first period.
The tides began to turn in the second frame. With Jakub Zboril and Jack vanBoekel both in the box, Bell fired a bullet past Auger to make it a 3-1 contest at 2:13. Less than two minutes later, Farell tipped another hard shot from Bell past Auger to quickly get Cape Breton within a goal.
Saint John stole some momentum back at 8:55 when Highmore fired a wrist shot past the glove of Brassard, giving the home side a 4-2 advantage. But just 30 seconds later, Svechnikov scored to get Cape Breton back within one.
Cape Breton was awarded a lengthy five-on-three power play later on in the period but Saint John produced a solid penalty kill and held a 4-3 lead after 40 minutes. Shots in the second stanza were 14-4 in favour of the Eagles.
The opening minutes of the third were fairly uneventful. Things changed later on though when Marsh scored a huge goal at 12:32. Luke Green fired the puck from the blue line and Marsh redirected the puck past Brassard making, it 5-3. Just under three minutes later, Joseph centered the puck to Marsh who fired it in to make it a 6-3 final.
Shots were 11-5 in favour of Saint John in the third and 29-21 Cape Breton overall.
Adam Marsh’s two goals in the third solidified Saint John’s 6-3 victory.
SN PLAYER OF THE GAME
TWEETOF THE GAME
Great crowd at @harbourstation today for our New Year's Eve game vs. @CBSEHockey. Happy New Year's everyone! pic.twitter.com/Pzyy9szzrV
— Saint John Sea Dogs (@SeaDogsHockey) December 31, 2014
- The Sea Dogs were without forwards Daniel Del Paggio (healthy), Matthew Green (healthy) and Alexander Kealey (soreness) along with defenseman Bailey Webster (healthy).
- Forward Samuel Dove-McFalls returned from an upper body injury suffered on Sunday. He missed Monday’s game in Bathurst. Meanwhile, forward Mathieu Joseph returned from a four-game suspension and defenseman Jakub Zboril returned from a one-game suspension.
- With an assist on Matthew Highmore’s goal, Sebastien Auger now has three helpers this season.
- Adam Marsh’s goal ended a streak of six straight pointless games for him.
- Luke Green now has three goals and three assists in his past four games.
- Cape Breton certainly had plenty of power play time in this game, going 1/8. Saint John went 1/4.
- 5,680 attended the game. It was the biggest home crowd of the season so far.
The Sea Dogs host the Halifax Mooseheads on Saturday night at 7 p.m.