Sunday, December 4, 2016

RECAP: Sea Dogs win 6-3

FINAL: Saint John 6, Gatineau 3
GATINEAU, Que. - The Saint John Sea Dogs' final road game of the first half was a winning one.

Spencer Smallman, Thomas Chabot, Matthew Highmore, Kyle Ward, Samuel Dove-McFalls and Nathan Noel all scored in Saint John's 6-3 victory over the Gatineau Olympiques on Sunday. Alex Bishop made 15 saves in the win.

The win gives the Sea Dogs a 3-1 record on their four-game road trip through Quebec. They will now play five straight at home.

Gatineau goals came from Yakov Trenin, Vitalli Abramov and Zack MacEwen. Mathieu Bellemare made 32 saves in the loss.

To the notes...
  • Gatineau opened the scoring just 1:15 in while shorthanded. Alexandre Bernier and Luke Green got their signals crossed in their own end, allowing Trenin to beat Bishop with a backhander in close, making it 1-0.
  • Smallman tied the game seven minutes in. Bernier threw a pass in front and Smallman was in perfect position to deflect it past Bellemare.
  • Chabot put Saint John up 2-1 at 8:29 of the second period with a power play goal. As the Sea Dogs streaked into the zone, Nathan Noel sent a perfect pass to a wide open Chabot in front. 
  • During some four-on-four play at 15:48, Highmore made a nice move along the side boards to get past the Gatineau defence. He then cut above the crease and deposited the puck into an open net to make it 3-1.
  • Just 55 seconds after Highmore's goal, Abramov was given the puck and scored on a mini break to cut Saint John's lead to 3-2.
  • Bishop made a huge save late in the second, using his glove to rob Eric Eschweiler on the goal line.
  • At 8:39 of the third, Ward's first of the year put Saint John up 4-2.
  • MacEwen got Gatineau back within one at 12:05, slapping the puck past Bishop from the top of the circle while on a power play.
  • At 16:41, Dove-McFalls scored a key insurance goal, making it 5-3. Mathieu Joseph had the initial shot which was gloved down by Dove-McFalls. The Philadelphia Flyers prospect then put the puck past the Gatineau 'tender to give the Dogs a two-goal advantage.
  • Noel scored on an empty net with 3.3 seconds left, making it a 6-3 final.
  • Jakub Zboril returned from a five-game suspension.
  • Bokondji Imama was not suspended for his "hit to the head" in Friday's game.
  • Smallman's goal was his 11th of the season and first since Nov. 11
  • Chabot and Nicolas Meloche each took two minor penalties in the first period. Meloche took his third minor in the second period.
  • Bishop picked up his first assist of the season on Chabot's second period goal.
  • Former Sea Dog Daniel Del Paggio had one assist in this game.
  • Joseph extended his point streak to 16 games.
  • Highmore has points in five straight.
  • The Sea Dogs split this road trip in net. Bishop played Sunday and Thursday while Alex D'Orio played Friday and Tuesday.
The Sea Dogs went with 11 forwards and seven defencemen in this one.
Joe Veleno (lower body), John Warren (upper body), Bailey Webster (upper body), Matt Green (upper body) and Bryson Michel (upper body). Olivier Mathieu was reassigned to AAA Magog and did not play.

Veleno once again took warm up but did not play. It was the fourth straight game he did so.

It wasn't the game winner but Samuel Dove-McFalls' third period goal, which made it 5-3, was huge with Gatineau gaining momentum.

1. Thomas Chabot
2. Matthew Highmore
3. Yakov Trenin

It's hard to pick just one.
The Sea Dogs return home to host the Moncton Wildcats on Wednesday night at 7 p.m.

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