SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs recovered nicely from a bad loss - less than 24 hours earlier - by beating the arch rival Moncton Wildcats 2-1 on Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station.
Radim Salda and Daniel Hardie scored for Saint John while Matt Williams had 36 saves.
Riley MacRae replied for the Wildcats while Mark Grametbauer also stopped 36 shots.
- The Sea Dogs controlled much of the play in the first period. Moncton opened the scoring while skating shorthanded at 10:28 when Simon Le Coultre's long up ice pass found MacRae in full stride at the Sea Dogs blue line. MacRae broke in all alone and fired a laser over Williams' shoulder.
- While skating four-on-four in the dying seconds of the first, Joe Veleno won a face off to himself at the Moncton blue line, skated into the slot and fed a nice pass to a streaking Salda. The rookie import defenceman wired a wrist shot past Grametbauer with under a second left in the period.
- The guys in stripes controlled the tempo in the middle frame, handing the visitors six power plays and the hosts two.
- The Sea Dogs got the lead at 11:15 of the second when Hardie corralled the rebound of a Robbie Burt shot and slid it past Grametbauer.
- The Sea Dogs held tight through a furious Wildcats onslaught in the closing minutes to seal the victory.
- As Tim Roszell said in his post game comments, the Christmas Bells were ringing behind Williams - as the Wildcats found iron on at least four occasions throughout the game. Sea Dogs fans were loving Williams and his best friends in this match.
SCRATCHESHere is this afternoon's lineup for your #SJSeaDogs brought to you by @CantrburyDental #AlwaysWearYourMouthGuard pic.twitter.com/6jxshkBBSM— Saint John Sea Dogs (@SJSeaDogs) November 26, 2017
The Sea Dogs went with a seven defencemen lineup. Cole Reginato (game three of a six game suspension), Nick Deakin-Poot (upper body), Landon Quincey (healthy) and Alex Lafreniere (healthy) sat out.
Joe Veleno's faceoff win and sweet dish to Radim Salda in the dying seconds of the opening period.
SN STARS OF THE GAME
1. Matt Williams
2. Mark Grametbauer
3. Joe Veleno
Saint John travels to Hull, Quebec this Friday, Dec. 1 to face the Gatineau Olympiques at 8:30 p.m.
Photo: Michael Hawkins/Saint John Sea Dogs