FINAL: Cape Breton 4, Saint John 1
The Sea Dogs have time to bounce back from Thursday night’s 4-1 game one loss to the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles. In fact, Cape Breton bounced back from a game loss in the first round to Chicoutimi before taking the series in six games.
The bad news for the Sea Dogs? They did not look impressive tonight. Saint John, without Mathieu Joseph and Adam Marsh, only generated 26 shots on net – 11 of which were classified as dangerous – and went 0-for-5 on the power play. That’s just not going to get it done against the high scoring Screaming Eagles.
It’s still early in the series. But game two is going to be a big one.
Michael Joly had a hat trick for the Screaming Eagles while Pierre-Luc Dubois also scored. Alexandre Belanger made 25 saves in the win – including a couple big ones.
Saint John’s lone goal came from Samuel Dove-McFalls. The Sea Dogs’ remaining big guns of Daniel Del Paggio, Matthew Highmore, Sam Povorozniouk and Nathan Noel were all shutout. Marc-Antoine Turcotte made 29 stops in the loss.
Cape Breton took a 2-0 lead at 8:15 of the second period. Completing a nice passing play, Massimo Carozza fed Joly who had an open net to double the Screaming Eagles’ lead.
With around six minutes left in the period and Saint John on a power play, Joly had a terrific shorthanded opportunity as he tried to fight off Noel on his way to the net. Danny Flynn had called a timeout before the man advantage but Saint John could not get on the board.
Saint John got back within one at 17:14. Dove-McFalls opted to keep the puck on a three-on-one and fired a wrister top corner past Belanger to make it 2-1 heading into the third period.
On a power play that carried over into the third, Saint John had a couple of great scoring chances early but could not beat Belanger.
Loik Leveille went to the box for holding at 3:41. Then at 5:15, Tobie Paquette-Bisson headed off for tripping, giving Saint John a brief five-on-three man advantage. Just as the penalties were coming to an end, Evgeny Svechnikov went in on a shorthanded breakaway but was denied by Turcotte. The puck went in the net but was ruled no goal.
Cape Breton then went to the power play at 8:08. At 9:16, Maxim Lazarev sent a cross crease pass to Joly who deposited the puck into an empty net to make it 3-1 Screaming Eagles.
Then, on another power play, Joly completed his hat trick at 11:26 to make it a 4-1 contest and put the game out of reach for the Sea Dogs.
- The Sea Dogs were without defensemen Alex Bernier and Vincent Martineau along with forwards Adam Marsh, Mathieu Joseph, Nico Blachman and Jordan King
- With Joseph out, Sam Povorozniouk moved up to the top line with Daniel Del Paggio and Matthew Highmore. Joe Veleno moved up to join Spencer Smallman and Nathan Noel on the second line.
- Defenseman Bailey Webster returned to action on Thursday, playing in his first game since Dec. 17 due to injury.
- According to Tim Roszell, Matthew Highmore was questionable for this game due to illness.
- Thomas Chabot was hit in the first period and left the game in noticeable pain. He returned soon after but seemed to labouring his left leg throughout the match.
- The Atlantic champion Saint John Vito’s were honoured at first intermission.
- In eight games against Saint John this year, Michael Joly has 10 goals and five assists.
- The Sea Dogs have never won a playoff series after losing the first game.
- The Screaming Eagles went an impressive 3/6 on the power play.
- Only two Cape Breton players did not record a shot on goal.
- Bokondji Imama had six hits. This one was close to being ugly.
Imama on Svechnikov. This was close. pic.twitter.com/RyBBcV09Q2— Jamie Tozer (@station_nation) April 8, 2016
Michael Joly’s power play goal at 9:16 of the third period gave Cape Breton a 3-1 lead. Saint John had just failed to score on a five-on-three advantage shortly before the goal, and Joly’s marker made things feel out of reach.
SN THREE STARS
TWEET OF THE GAME
2,816 at Harbour Station for a second round playoff game? That is awful #QMJHL— David McKnight (@mcknight_david) April 8, 2016
Game two of this series takes place on Saturday at 8 p.m. at Harbour Station.