Saturday, April 8, 2017

RECAP: Sea Dogs win 4-1

FINAL: Val-d'Or 1, Saint John 4
SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs had an easier time beating Etienne Montpetit on Saturday - but not much.

The Val-d'Or Foreurs goaltender was sensational again, making 50 saves in what ended up being a 4-1 Sea Dogs victory at Harbour Station. Like Friday the game remained close throughout, but instead of overtime on this night, the Sea Dogs got a key two-goal lead midway through the third, guiding them to the Game 2 win.

The victory gives Saint John a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven quarterfinal series. The next three games (if all are needed) will be played in Val-d'Or.

Cedric Pare, Julien Gauthier, Spencer Smallman and Mathieu Joseph all scored for the Dogs. It was another dominating night on offence and possession with Saint John outshooting Val-d'Or 54-18 - but Montpetit once again kept it close.

Callum Booth, although not tested much, was excellent when called upon, making 17 stops.

Simon Lafrance scored the Foreurs' lone goal.

To the notes...
  • After peppering the Foreurs with shots in the first few minutes, Pare finally beat Montpetit at 4:55 to give the Sea Dogs a 1-0 advantage.
  • The Foreurs' first shot of the game came at 14:00, a shot that that came from behind the Val-d'Or goal line. On a power play soon after, the Foreurs did create a quality scoring chance, their only one of the period.
  • Charley Graaskam had Val-d'Or's first shot of the second period near the midway mark, making a great move to get around Thomas Chabot before being stopped by Booth.
  • At 10:05, Sean O'Brien fired a shot on net that was stopped by Booth and produced a rebound. The rebound went off Lafrance in front and in, making it a 1-1 game.
  • On a power play at 13:31, Joseph was at the goal line and sent a pass to Gauthier who was parked in the slot. Gauthier ripped a shot past Montpetit, giving Saint John a 2-1 lead.
  • At 11:43 of the third, the Sea Dogs finally got some breathing room when Smallman made a deke and beat Montpetit while shorthanded. That made it 3-1 Saint John.
  • Val-d'Or pulled Montpetit with three minutes left. With 2:40 remaining, Joseph hit the empty net to make it a 4-1 final.
  • Pare's goal was his first of the playoffs.
  • Gauthier had 13 shots in the game.
  • Saint John's power play struggles continued, going 1/6.
  • As mentioned on Rogers TV, Saint John scored at even strength, on the power play, on the penalty kill and wrapped things up with an empty net goal.
  • Booth has faced less than 20 shots in five straight games.
  • Saint John has scored a league high three shorthanded goals this post-season.
  • Val-d'Or import Ivan Kozlov, who had 32 points in 53 games during the regular season, did not play.

The Sea Dogs were without defencemen Oliver Felixson, David Comeau and Ian Smallwood along with forwards Landon Quinney and Samuel Leblanc.

Callum Booth made a few big saves during a Val-d'Or power play in the third period. Moments later, Spencer Smallman scored to put Saint John up 3-1.

1. Etienne Montpetit
2. Julien Gauthier
3. Nathan Noel

The Sea Dogs and Foreurs meet for Game 3 on Tuesday night at 8:30 p.m. in Val-d'Or.

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