FINAL: Saint John 4, Halifax 1
HALIFAX – After a rough ride down the stretch, the Saint John Sea Dogs will enter the playoffs on a winning note.
The Sea Dogs brought a five-game losing streak to an end on Saturday with a 4-1 victory over the Halifax Mooseheads at Scotiabank Centre. The win means Saint John finishes 10th overall in the QMJHL standings with a record of 32-26-4-6 for 74 points.
Mark Tremaine had a pair of goals in the win while Samuel Dove-McFalls and Braydon Blight added singles. The Dogs were playing without their top three scorers – Nathan Noel, Spencer Smallman and Adam Marsh – to make the solid win even more impressive.
Sebastien Auger was given the day off. Alex Bishop had a strong performance in net, making 27 saves in the win.
Halifax’s goal came from Timo Meier. Eric Brassard made 28 saves in the loss.
The Mooseheads opened the scoring at 6:58 of the first period on a power play. Meier tried to centre the puck to the top of the crease but it some skates in front. The Mooseheads import picked the puck up and sent it off Bishop and in to give Halifax a 1-0 lead.
Shortly after Meier’s goal, Nikolaj Ehlers had a breakaway but lost the puck. Ehlers had another great chance later on but was robbed by the glove of Bishop.
In the second, Dove-McFalls tied it up at 3:26 as his backhand shot rolled across the goal line. Then at 6:28 on a power play, Daniel Del Paggio shoveled the puck to Tremaine in front who slid the disc past Brassard to give Saint John a 2-1 lead.
The Sea Dogs made it a 3-1 game at 14:47 when Blight sped past the Halifax defence and wired a wrist shot upstairs on Brassard.
With 1:37 left in the second, Thomas Chabot received a double minor for a high stick on Vincent Watt, sending Halifax to a four-minute power play. The Moose had a bit of pressure applied but created no great chances.
At 6:16, Connor Moynihan hit Del Paggio from behind and was given a five-minute major and game misconduct. The Dogs couldn’t get a whole lot going on the man advantage, though.
Halifax pulled Brassard with plenty of time left. With nine second remaining in regulation time, Tremaine hit the empty net to make it a 4-1 final. Shots ended 32-28 in favour of Saint John overall.
Saint John’s three-goal second period set the momentum for the rest of the game.
SN PLAYERS OF THE GAME
Alex Bishop made some key and timely saves in the victory, even earning some praise from TSN’s Craig Button who was in attendance.
- The Sea Dogs were without their three leading scorers for the game. Nathan Noel (flu), Spencer Smallman (lower body), Adam Marsh (lower body) and Bailey Webster (upper body) were all out of Saint John’s lineup.
- There was a pre-game ceremony honouring Matthew Wuest, Metro Halifax’s former Mooseheads reporter, who passed away from colon cancer this past week.
- The Mooseheads have to wrap up their regular season tomorrow against Moncton thanks to the snowstorm that cancelled Wednesday’s game.
- TSN’s Craig Button was at the game.
- Mark Tremaine ends the regular season on a nine-game point streak.
- Saint John finishes the regular season with a 7-1-0-0 record against Halifax.
- Nikolaj Ehlers had a 22-game home point scoring streak come to an end today.
The Sea Dogs open the 2015 playoffs on an undetermined day against an undetermined team.