FINAL: Shawinigan 7, Saint John 3
SAINT JOHN – A third period meltdown by the Saint John Sea Dogs has given the Shawinigan Cataractes a 2-1 series lead.
The Sea Dogs allowed six unanswered goals – including five goals on 11 shots in the third period – in a 7-3 loss to the Cataractes on Tuesday night at Harbour Station. Shawinigan now leads the best-of-seven semifinal series 2-1.
Brandon Gignac, Gabriel Gagne and Dmytro Timashov each scored twice for Shawinigan. Mathieu Olivier also scored. Philippe Cadorette made 26 saves in the win.
Kyle Ward, Samuel Dove-McFalls and Sam Povorozniouk scored for Saint John. Marc-Antoine Turcotte allowed six goals on 22 shots in the loss.
The Sea Dogs were up 3-1 in the second period and entered the third up 3-2. But that third period… that was something. Saint John will need to regroup quickly or they could be facing a do-or-die game in Shawinigan on Friday.
The Sea Dogs would even the contest at 16:17 when Ward batted the puck out of the air for his first goal of the playoffs, evening the game at a 1-1.
Saint John put on their hard hats in the second period as they scored a pair of hard work style goals. The first was on a scramble in front with Dove-McFalls putting in a loose puck to give the Sea Dogs their first lead of the game at 3:57. The second came at 15:36 off another scramble where Povorozniouk was able to jump on a loose puck and lift a backhand shot over Cadorette, making it 3-1.
The Cataractes would get one back at 17:09. Gignac was seemingly shot out of a cannon, showing off some great wheels before tucking a shot by Turcotte to close the gap to 3-2.
Shawinigan tied the game at 5:31 of the final frame by using a quick transition game. Timashov made no mistake and knotted things at 3-3. The Cataractes came right back just 21 seconds later to take the lead, 4-3, as Olivier beat Turcotte.
The onslaught would continue with Gagne extending the lead to 5-3 at 10:46. As if that wasn’t enough, Gagne struck again at 14:23 to extend Shawinigan’s lead to 6-3 and putt the game out of reach for the home town Sea Dogs. Shawinigan would end the game with a long empty net goal by Timashov to secure the 7-3 victory.
- Scratches for the Sea Dogs were Mathieu Joseph, Adam Marsh, Nico Blachman, Alexandre Bernier, Vincent Martineau, Bokondji Imama, Alex Lafreniere and Ian Smallwood.
- Scratches for the Cataractes were Dennis Yan, Justin Bernier, Tommy Lemay and Simon Benoit.
- Dennis Yan was suspended for this game following a crosscheck he delivered in game two.
- The Saint John Vito’s were recognized before the game and captain Will Drummond performed the ceremonial puck drop.
- Kyle Ward’s goal was his first career playoff goal and first ever goal scored at Harbour Station. Ward hadn’t scored since Nov. 21.
- Saint John outshot Shawinigan 11-7 in both the first and second periods. Shawinigan outshot Saint John 11-7 in the third.
The third period start to finish was just a disaster for the Sea Dogs, giving up five unanswered goals.
SN THREE STARS
The Sea Dogs and Cataractes go right back at it tomorrow night at Harbour Station for game four. Game time is 7 p.m.