Tuesday, November 30, 2010

ANOTHER NOVEMBER TO REMEMBER

What a month that was.

With November now at its end, the Saint John Sea Dogs can say they had an impressive 30 days.

In seven games this past month, Saint John went an excellent 6-0-0-1. The Sea Dogs, still without a regulation loss at home, went 5-0-0-1 at Harbour Station. They played only one game on the road, defeating the Moncton Wildcats 9-7 in a building the team has struggled in for years.

Saint John was scheduled to play a second road contest, November 20 in Bathurst, but it was postponed to December 1 because of a snow storm.

The Sea Dogs really hit their stride in November, playing some solid and consistent hockey. Despite a good first few weeks to the year, the team didn’t seem to be clicking the right way. Those memories were erased over the past seven games.

The offense had a strong month. Saint John scored 43 goals for an insane average of 6.14 goals per game. The Dogs scored more than five goals in six of their seven games last month.

Not only was the Sea Dogs' offense rolling, but the defense played well. Saint John averaged 2.85 goals against in the month, allowing a total of 20 goals over seven contests. If the 'Meltdown in Wildtown' didn't happen, the Dogs would have had only 13 goals against.

If it wasn’t for that dang shootout loss against the Chicoutimi Sagueneens on the 6th, Saint John would have had their second straight perfect November. The club went 10-0-0-0 last year when they were in the middle of an epic 22-game winning streak.

Entering tonight’s QMJHL action, Saint John is tied for first overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League with a record of 21-3-0-1, good for 44 points. They have scored the most goals of any team with 128 and have allowed the fewest amount of goals with 70.

The Dogs’ hot stretch goes beyond November, though. The team has not lost in regulation since October 22 in Bathurst. They are 11-0-0-1 during that stretch.

Saint John will look to get payback in the building they last suffered a regulation loss in tomorrow when they visit the Acadie-Bathurst Titan at 7:30 pm.

Monday, November 29, 2010

POSTSCRIPT: Mooseheads 1, Sea Dogs 7

By Station Nation Staff

SEA DOGS – MOOSEHEADS GAME AT A GLANCE
Final Score: Halifax 1, Saint John 7
Saint John Goals: Zach Phillips (18, 19), Nathan Beaulieu (5), Tomas Jurco (14), Jonathan Huberdeau (16), Stanislav Galiev (12), and Scott Oke (4)
Halifax Goals: Francis Turbide (4)
Winning Goaltender: SNB – Frederic Piche
Losing Goaltender: HAL – Mathieu Corbeil
News 88.9 Top Dog: Simon Despres

THE NUMBERS
Power Play: Mooseheads: 0/5, Saint John: 3/6
Shots on Goal: Mooseheads: 6+12+16=34, Sea Dogs: 17+8+11=36
Length: 2:08
Attendance: 3,277

SAINT JOHN SCRATCHES
Michael Kirkpatrick served the second game of a three-game suspension he received for checking Alex MacDonald of the Moncton Wildcats from behind last Sunday. The Sea Dogs 20-year old center will serve the final game of his suspension Wednesday when Saint John visits Bathurst.

Defenseman Guillaume Cloutier was a healthy scratch.

DOWN GOES HALIFAX. DOGS WIN 7-1.
The Saint John Sea Dogs took an early lead and never looked back as the home team cruised to a 7-1 victory over the Halifax Mooseheads Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action.

"I think we were moving our feet,'' said Simon Despres to the Telegraph-Journal. "We have a lot of skill and we're scoring lots of goals, but we're also focusing on playing defence, so we're hard to beat.

"We're trying to get the puck out of our zone as fast as we can and going on transitions as fast as we can. We're working on that in practice and it showed today.''

Zach Phillips opened the scoring just 34 seconds in on a breakaway following a Halifax turnover. Phillips gave his team a 2-0 lead at 14:31 after he crept off the side boards and beat Mathieu Corbeil with a hard wrist shot.

In the second period, Nathan Beaulieu scored on a one-timer at the top of the circle at 4:42 to give Saint John a 3-0 lead. Tomas Jurco then made it four straight goals for the Dogs when he finished a great pass from Huberdeau at 17:40.

The Mooseheads got on the board at 2:31 when Francis Turnbide beat Frederic Piche in the crease on what looked like a bit of confusion among Saint John players. But less than a minute later, Huberdeau got the Sea Dogs’ four goal lead back with a power play marker.

Stanislav Galiev made it a 6-1 affair at 9:53 of the third after Ryan Tesink gave him a nice drop pass. Scott Oke finished off the scoring 12:31, making it a 7-1 final.

PHILLIPS EARNS FIRST STAR HONOURS

A sensational weekend by Saint John Sea Dogs forward Zach Phillips has earned him Telus First Star honours this week. The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League made the announcement this aftermoon.

Phillips scored two goals in each contest he played in this weekend, helping the Sea Dogs defeat the Acadie-Bathurst Titan 6-3 on Friday night and the Halifax Mooseheads 7-1 on Sunday afternoon.

Along with his four goals, Phillips added two assists and was a +3. He was named first star in both contests.

The Fredericton native now has a team high 19 goals this season while also producing 14 assists in the 26 matches he has played in. In his rookie campaign last season, Phillips had 16 goals and 28 assists in 65 games.

It was a good month for Phillips. He recorded eight goals and seven assists in eight November games including six goals in his past two games.

The second star goes to the Val-d’Or Foreurs right-winger Jonathan Hazen. The veteran recorded 3 goals and 2 assists for a total of 5 points while posting a +1 rating in two wins over the Baie-Comeau Drakkar. Furthermore, in a loss to the P.E.I. Rocket on Monday, he registered 2 helpers and was named the third star of the game. He collected seven points in three games last week.

Finally, Drummondville Voltigeurs left-winger Ondrej Palat is this week's third star. The Czech forward scored four goals and added two helpers in two games. He was named first and third stars on Friday and Sunday respectively. On Friday night, the Drummondville Voltigeurs were playing their 1000th home game. They glided to a 5-3 win over the Victoriaville Tigres.

- With files from the QMJHL website

DESPRES INVITED TO CAMP

Simon Despres has been invited to Canada’s National Junior Team Selection Camp.

The full camp roster was announced this afternoon at a press conference in Toronto. The process of selecting the 22-man team to represent Canada at the World Junior Hockey Championships runs from December 12 to 15 in the Ontario capital.

Despres was expected to be named to the camp. The Saint John Sea Dogs defenseman will have a good shot at making the team after a solid start to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League season.

"I have to play good positional hockey and be good defensively,'' Despres said about his bid to make Team Canada to the Telegraph-Journal. "I just have to play simple and make a good first pass and try not to do too much. I'm going into (that) camp to earn a spot.''

The 19-year old got a long look at Pittsburgh Penguins training camp this past September before being returned to junior. In 16 games this season with the nationally ranked Sea Dogs, Despres has five goals and 14 assists. He has been dominant on the backend all year for Saint John, carrying an impressive +19 rating.

Despres’ previous Hockey Canada experience involves skating with Team Quebec at the 2008 World U-17 Hockey Challenge, recording no points and 10 penalty minutes in five matches. He then won Gold with Team Canada at the 2008 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka Tournament, registering two goals and eight penalty minutes in four contests. The Pens prospect also represented Canada (4th Place Team) at the 2009 World U-18 Championships where he added two assists and eight penalty minutes in six games to his impressive resume.

The ‘Big Horse’ took part in Canada’s summer development camp in St. John’s, Newfoundland over the off-season.

Despres is just the second Sea Dog in team history to make the camp roster. Chris DiDomenico played for Canada at the 2009 World Juniors in Ottawa, capturing a Gold Medal.

34 of the 39 players at the camp are from the Canadian Hockey League. The full roster can be seen below:

WJHC CAMP ANNOUNCEMENT TODAY

This afternoon, Hockey Canada will announce the list of players who will participate in the National Junior Selection Camp which will be held later this month in Toronto. The camp will help shape Canada's 22-man roster for the 2011 World Junior Hockey Championships in Buffalo, New York.

The announcement is scheduled to take place at 2:00 pm AST this afternoon. The Hockey Canada website says that it will carry the announcement live.

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League will be represented in some capacity at the camp. A report by RDS indicates that six players from the league will be selected today. They are forwards Louis Leblanc of the Montreal Juniors, Michael Bournival of the Shawinigan Cataractes, and Sean Couturier of the Drummondville Voltigeurs, defensemen Brandon Gormley of the Moncton Wildcats and Simon Despres of the Saint John Sea Dogs, and goaltender Olivier Roy of the Acadie-Bathurst Titan.

Nick over at the Juniors blog Hockey Points has a rundown of all the players expected to be named today from the QMJHL.

Despres is the only Sea Dog likely to be named to the camp roster – and he has a great chance of making the team. He was unable to play in the Subway Super Series due to injury, but the Pittsburgh Penguins prospect has been lights out this season. Given his age and his experience with the Hockey Canada program in the past, the ‘Big Horse’ should get a long look.

It isn’t known if Wildcats defenseman Brandon Gormley will be named to the camp roster tomorrow. The Phoenix Coyotes first round pick in June suffered a knee injury in Lewiston on the weekend and is reportedly out of action for close to a month. It is a big loss for Canada as Gormley was all but a lock to make the team.

Other Sea Dogs who have attracted attention from Hockey Canada are Nathan Beaulieu, Zach Phillips, and Jonathan Huberdeau. All three played in the Super Series and Beaulieu also took part in the National Junior team’s summer camp in St. John’s, Newfoundland. It would be surprising if any of them were named to the camp roster, but all three will get their chance in the coming years.

The camp begins December 11th and runs through to the 15th. Canada is scheduled to play exhibition matches against Switzerland in Oshawa on December 20, Sweden in Toronto on December 21 and Finland in Kitchener on December 23. The real fun begins on Boxing Day when Canada takes on Russia.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

DOGS SHOOT DOWN HERD

SN RECAP
FINAL: Mooseheads 1, Sea Dogs 7

SAINT JOHN – Zach Phillips seems to like scoring in pairs.

For the third straight game, Phillips scored two goals for the Saint John Sea Dogs. His two markers helped guide Saint John to a 7-1 victory over the Halifax Mooseheads on Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action.

Nathan Beaulieu, Tomas Jurco, Jonathan Huberdeau, Stanislav Galiev, and Scott Oke also scored. Huberdeau added three assists. Frederic Piche played well in the Sea Dogs crease, stopping 33 shots and earning third star honours.

Although the score was lopsided, Halifax played well at times and forced Piche to make some good stops. But Saint John was just too much for the young Mooseheads team that is now 0-4 against the Sea Dogs this season.

Francis Turbide scored the lone Moose goal. Mathieu Corbeil didn’t play all that bad, stopping 29 shots and allowing seven goals.

LIVE BLOG: Mooseheads vs Sea Dogs

PRE-GAME: Halifax Mooseheads vs Saint John Sea Dogs

GAME DAY
WHO: Halifax Mooseheads vs Saint John Sea Dogs
WHEN: Today, 4:00 pm
WHERE: Harbour Station

VISITING TEAM: Halifax Mooseheads
Record: 9-17-0-1 (6th in Maritime Division)
Last Game: 4-2 loss at Cape Breton Friday
Leading Scorer: Martin Frk (27GP-10G-19A-29Pts)
Notes: The Halifax Mooseheads enter play today with a record of 9-17-0-1 which puts them last in the Maritime Division but just one point back of the fifth place Cape Breton Screaming Eagles. The Herd are currently 16th overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League… the Mooseheads are coming off a 4-2 loss in Cape Breton on Friday night. Carl Gelinas opened the scoring in the first period but the Screaming Eeagles would counter with four straight goals. Charles Bety had the other Moosehead goal in the third period. Goaltender Anthony Terenzio made 22 saves in 40 minutes of play while Mathieu Corbeil stopped all 10 shots he faced in relief. Cape Breton went 2/4 on the power play… Halifax is 3-7-0-0 away from the Metro Centre this season and have been outscored 40-29. They have collected the second fewest road points in the league so far this year… 4-6-0-0 in their last 10 games and have dropped two straight contests. Halifax’s last win was a 3-2 decision on November 19 against the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies. They have lost games against the Val-d’Or Foreurs and Cape Breton since that time… the Mooseheads have the 15th ranked power play in the QMJHL with a rating of 0.160… currently tied with the Saint John Sea Dogs for the leagues eighth best penalty kill. They both have a rating of 0.785… rookie sensation Martin Frk leads the Mooseheads in scoring with 29 points in 27 games. He also leads the team in assists with 19… Frk’s 29 points put him in a tie with the Quebec Remparts’ Tomas Filippi for first overall in the QMJHL’s rookie scoring race… Carl Gelinas leads the Herd in goals with 14 in 27 contests… Alex Lemieux has taken a team high 62 penalty minutes this year… the Moose have served the third most penalty minutes of any team this season with 513… it isn’t clear who will start in goal today. Rookie Anthony Terenzio started his fourth straight contest Friday in Sydney but was pulled in the game. Terenzio has a record of 3-7-0-0, a goals against average of 3.46, and a save percentage of 0.881. If Terenzio does not get the nod, Columbus Blue Jackets draft pick Mathieu Corbeil will get the start. He has a record of 6-8-0-1, a GAA of 3.80, and a SV% of 0.862… Halifax has played the fewest road games of any club this season with 10 while playing 17 at home. But the Moose will be away from the Metro Centre for the next little while. This is the second game of a five game road swing for the Herd that will see them play in Shawinigan, Val-d’Or, and Rouyn-Noranda next week… the Mooseheads lead the league in fighting with 40 tilts this season.

HOME TEAM: Saint John Sea Dogs
Record: 20-3-0-1 (1st in Maritime Division)
Last Game: 6-3 win vs Bathurst Friday
Leading Scorer: Jonathan Huberdeau (25GP-15G-19A-34Pts)
Notes: The Saint John Sea Dogs come into today’s contest with a record of 20-3-0-1 which is good for first in Maritime Division and seven points up on the second place Moncton Wildcats. The Sea Dogs are currently tied with the surprising Lewiston Maineiacs for second overall in the league. Saint John is 0.140 ahead of Lewiston in terms of winning percentage, however… Saint John was ranked third in the country this week in the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings… the Dogs are coming off a 6-3 win against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan on Friday night at Harbour Station. Zach Phillips had two goals while singles came from Nathan Beaulieu, Tomas Jurco, Danick Gauthier, and Stephen MacAulay. Goaltender Jacob DeSerres made 20 saves for the win… Saint John is still without a regulation loss at home this season. The club is 12-0-0-1 at Harbour Station and have outscored their opposition 67-29. They are the only team in the league remaining without a regulation loss at home… the Sea Dogs have been hot of late. The team is currently on a 10-0-0-1 stretch meaning they have picked up at least a point in their last 11 games. They are 9-0-0-1 in their last 10 games and have won four straight... Saint John’s last regulation loss came on October 22nd in Bathurst… Saint John’s power play is still middle-of-the-pack with a rating of 0.195. That is good for eighth in the league… Saint John’s penalty kill is ranked eighth in the QMJHL as well but has not been good of late. After allowing five power play goals against Moncton last Sunday, Bathurst scored twice on the man advantage Friday… Jonathan Huberdeau still leads the Sea Dogs in scoring with 34 points in 25 games. He also has a team high 37 penalty minutes… Huberdeau’s excellent +31 rating is the best in the QMJHL… with two goals on Friday, Zach Phillips now leads Saint John in goals with 17… Michael Kirkpatrick leads the Dogs in helpers with 22 on the season… Kirkpatrick will be unable to play in this afternoon’s match as he will be serving the second game of a three-game suspension he received last Sunday for a hit-from-behind… Frederic Piche will likely start in goal today. The 19-year old has a record of 9-1-0-2, a goals against average of 2.47, and a save percentage of 0.912.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

POSTSCRIPT: Titan 3, Sea Dogs 6

By Station Nation Staff

SEA DOGS – TITAN GAME AT A GLANCE
Final Score: Bathurst 3, Saint John 6
Saint John Goals: Zach Phillips (16, 17), Nathan Beaulieu (4), Tomas Jurco (13), Danick Gauthier (4), and Stephen MacAulay (8)
Bathurst Goals: Vincent Arseneau (4), Daniel Tanel (1), Christophe Losier (4)
Winning Goaltender: SNB – Jacob DeSerres
Losing Goaltender: BAT – Olivier Roy
News 88.9 Top Dog: Jacob DeSerres

THE NUMBERS
Power Play: Titan: 2/5, Sea Dogs: 1/8
Shots on Goal: Titan: 3+11+9=23, Sea Dogs: 5+10+11=26
Length: 2:16
Attendance: 3,546

SCRATCHES
Sea Dogs 20-year old center Michael Kirkpatrick served the first game of his three-game suspension yesterday. Kirkpatrick earned the suspension after he hit Alex MacDonald of the Moncton Wildcats from behind in Saint John’s 9-7 win on Sunday afternoon.

Tyrone Sock was a healthy scratch.

SEA DOGS DOULE UP TITAN
Two goals by Zach Phillips led the Saint John Sea Dogs to a 6-3 victory over the Acadie-Bathurst Titan in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action on Friday night at Harbour Station.

After a slow first period, the Sea Dogs began to hit their stride in the second, scoring three goals in the frame.

"We found a way to win against a real good team with a good goaltender,'' Sea Dogs head coach Gerard Gallant said to the Telegraph-Journal. "Some guys played pretty well and some guys were OK.''

Daniel Tanel gave the Titan a 1-0 lead at 1:48 of the first period. Nathan Beaulieu tied the game at 16:30 of the frame on a blast from the wing that beat Olivier Roy up high to make it a 1-1 game.

In the second, Tomas Jurco made it a 2-1 game at 2:03. But Christophe Losier tied the match with a power play goal in close at 9:49. Saint John would continue to roll with two straight goals by Phillips to give the Dogs a 4-2 lead going into intermission.

Vincent Arseneau would score in the third to put the Titan within one. But that would be as close as they would come as Danick Gauthier and Stephen MacAulay make it a 6-3 final in favour of the home team.

Friday, November 26, 2010

DOGS DOWN TITAN 6-3

SN RECAP
FINAL: Titan 3, Sea Dogs 6

SAINT JOHN – The Sea Dogs love Saint John.

The Port City junior club improved to 12-0-0-1 on home ice this season with a 6-3 win over the Acadie-Bathurst Titan Friday night in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action.

Zach Phillips had a pair while Nathan Beaulieu, Tomas Jurco, Danick Gauthier, and Stephen MacAulay added solo markers to help propel Saint John to victory. Goaltender Jacob DeSerres made 20 saves for the win.

Daniel Tanel, Christophe Losier, and Vincent Arseneau all scored for Bathurst. Star netminder Olivier Roy played well, making 20 saves in the loss.

The Sea Dogs got off to a bit of a sluggish start but slowly built momentum as the game progressed. One of the big moments in the game saw Saint John continue to roll after Nathan Beaulieu was thrown out and given a five minute penalty. Although the Titan scored, the Sea Dogs managed to get things going back their way as the game moved on.

LIVE BLOG: Titan vs Sea Dogs

SAUVE SET TO MAKE PRO DEBUT

After several weeks of mystery, former Saint John Sea Dogs defenseman Yann Sauve is expected to return to the ice this weekend.

The Vancouver Canucks draft pick was hit by a car during rookie camp this past September and has been suffering the effect of a concussion ever since. But after a lengthy recovery, Sauve is expected to make his professional debut this weekend.

Today, the American Hockey League’s Manitoba Moose officially sent Sauve to the Canucks’ East Coast Hockey League affiliate, the Victoria Salmon Kings.

"He's a top-end second-round draft pick and a lot of Vancouver and Manitoba people will be at our next five or so games to see if Yann is where they want him to be [in terms of fitness and recovery]," said Salmon Kings GM and head coach Mark Morrison to the Victoria Times-Colonist today.

"He's a good skater with a big body. He brings everything."

Sauve is expected to dress for the ECHL club tonight when they host the Idaho Steelheads.

The 20-year old has been with the Moose for most of the season but has not played in a game because of his injury.

"He's not there yet," Manitoba head coach Claude Noel said to Winnipeg Free Press yesterday prior to the announcement of his assignment to the ECHL. "He does need some heavy practice. We've got to sort through that. He's ready to go. He just needs timing. It's been three months. He needs to play. It's hard to play at this level and expect he'll fall right in."

Sauve had one of the year’s best quotes in the Free Press: "It's not really a good time to get injured -- as soon as you step in the pros you get hit by a car or whatever.”

There was a lot of mystery surrounding Sauve’s health after Telegraph-Journal sports columnist Peter McGuire wrote a piece on how the Canucks were keeping his status – and Sauve – quiet.

In four seasons with QMJHL Saint John, Sauve had 20 goals and 82 assists in 251 regular season games. Last season, Sauve appeared in 61 games for the Sea Dogs scoring 36 points (7g-29a) while serving 65 minutes in penalties. The defenseman also helped lead Saint John to the QMJHL Final this past spring where he recorded 15 points (5g-10a) and 36 penalty minutes in 21 playoff contests.

Photo Credit: Winnipeg Free Press

PRE-GAME: Acadie-Bathurst Titan vs Saint John Sea Dogs

GAME DAY
WHO: Acadie-Bathurst Titan vs Saint John Sea Dogs
WHEN: Tonight, 7:30 pm
WHERE: Harbour Station

VISITING TEAM: Acadie-Bathurst Titan
Record: 17-9-0-0 (2nd in Maritime Division)
Last Game: 7-1 win vs Rouyn-Noranda Sunday
Leading Scorer: Gabriel Levesque (26GP-11G-29A-40Pts)
Notes: The Acadie-Bathurst Titan come into tonight’s match with a 17-9-0-0 record which places them in a tie with the Moncton Wildcats for second in the Maritime Division. The Titan sit tied with the Wildcats and Gatineau Olympiques for sixth overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League… Bathurst is coming off a 7-1 win over the lowly Rouyn-Noranda Huskies on Sunday at the KC Irving Regional Centre. Gabriel Levesque scored twice while singles came courtesy of Brett Turnbull, Vincent Arseneau, Sebastien Trudeau, and Christophe Losier. Backup goaltender Robert Steeves made 29 for the win. The Huskies, not exactly an offensively gifted team, matched the Titan shot-for-shot with each team posting 11 shots in the first period, 11 in the second, and eight in the third… 6-4-0-0 in their last 10 games and have won two consecutive matches – Sunday’s win over Rouyn-Noranda and a 4-2 win on November 17 against the PEI Rocket… on the road this season, the Titan are 8-5-0-0 and have outscored their competition 38-30 along the way… Bathurst has the seventh best power play in the league. They are currently operating at 0.216… the Titan have been strong on the penalty kill this season. They are currently second in the league with a kill off rating of 0.847 while a man down. Their penalty kill is tops on the road among QMJHL teams with a rating of 0.879… Gabriel Levesque continues to lead the Titan in scoring by a large margin. He has a team high 40 points, 15 more than Sebastien Trudeau who is second in team scoring. His 40 points place him third in league scoring… Levesque leads the Titan in assists with 29 which is good for second in the league… Trudeau leads the northern New Brunswick club in goals with 14… super pest Vincent Arseneau leads the Titan in penalty minutes with 60 in 26 games. His minutes in the sin bin place him sixth among QMJHL bad boys… star goaltender Olivier Roy will likely get the call between the pipes this evening. The Team Canada hopeful has a record of 9-7-0-0, a goals against average of 2.80, and a save percentage of 0.913… the Titan have dropped the gloves 23 times this season which places them ninth in the league. Losier leads the way with seven fights.

HOME TEAM: Saint John Sea Dogs
Record: 19-3-0-1 (1st in Maritimes Division)
Last Game: 9-7 win at Moncton Sunday
Leading Scorer: Jonathan Huberdeau (24GP-15G-17A-32Pts)
Notes: The Saint John Sea Dogs enter action tonight with a record of 19-3-0-1 which is good for first place in the Maritime Division and a tie with the Lewiston MAINEiacs for second overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Although Saint John sits second in the league with 40 points, they have played three fewer games than the first place Quebec Remparts and five fewer than the Maineiacs… Saint John was ranked third in the BMO CHL MasterCard Top Rankings this week… the Sea Dogs are coming off a wild 9-7 win in Moncton on Sunday. Saint John was down 4-0 in the first period but stormed back in the second period and hung on in the third for the victory. Stanislav Galiev, Jonathan Huberdeau, Zack Phillips, Guillaume Cloutier, Mike Thomas, Steven Anthony, Ryan Tesink, Stephen MacAulay, and Simon Despres all scored for Saint John. Frederic Piche was pulled in the first, forcing Jacob DeSerres to help the Dogs to victory… the Sea Dogs are 9-0-0-1 in their last 10 games and have picked up at least a point in their last 10 games… Saint John has not lost in regulation since October 22nd, a 5-1 loss in Bathurst against the Titan… tied with the Quebec Remparts for the most goals scored this season in the QMJHL with 115 in 24 games… the Sea Dogs have allowed the second fewest goals against this year with 66. Only the Shawinigan Cataractes are better with 64… Jonathan Huberdeau still leads Saint John in scoring with 32 points in 24 games. Huberdeau also leads Saint John in plus/minus with a +29 rating and penalty minutes with 33… Huberdeau and Zach Phillips are tied for the team lead in goals with 15… Michael Kirkpatrick leads the Dogs in assists with 22. Huberdeau is second with 17… if the goaltending rotation holds true, Jacob DeSerres should get the start tonight. He has a record of 6-1-0-0, a goals against average of 2.71, and a save percentage of 0.898. DeSerres played most of the game on Sunday in Moncton after Frederic Piche was pulled. Piche has a record of 9-1-0-2, a GAA of 2.47, and a SV% of 0.912.

FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Office Hockey

Some more amazing commercials from the past in today's Flashback Friday. Today, Alex Grant, Chris DiDomenico, and Splash (R.I.P.) make an appearance.



This ad makes us wonder: does anybody miss Splash at all? We don't.



Unreal pair of sneakers on DiDomenico.

Ed. Note: Each Friday, SN takes a look at a moment(s) in Sea Dogs history. In a continuing trend of random topics that make little sense to any current event, we look back at two the Office Hockey Chair-ity ads from the 2007-08 season.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

SEA DOGS NOTEBOOK

JOB WELL DONE
Summerside Journal Pioneer columnist Joe MacIntyre had some nice words for the Prince Edward Island members of the Sea Dogs coaching staff.

Here’s an excerpt:

Gallant has had great success at the junior level, and has the ability to get everything and more out of a player. He is a "players' coach" and has an impressive résumé since taking over Saint John at the beginning of the 2009-10 season. Gallant and Kelly led a youthful Saint John team to the league final last season, before bowing out to the much-more experienced Moncton Wildcats.
One of the true measurements of a good coach is developing a player into a better player, and both Gallant and Kelly have certainly demonstrated that.
MacIntyre also brings up that, if the Sea Dogs make the Memorial Cup, Gerard Gallant and Mike Kelly would join Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors head coach Dave Cameron as Islanders behind the bench.

RANKINGS AFTERMATH
More NHL Central Scouting Rankings aftermath has been discovered.

Bruins 2011 Draft Watch, a hidden gem in the world of hockey prospects websites, spoke with some scout about the players ranked from the QMJHL.

"We knew he had the offense prior to the season," the scout said when asked about the #2 ranked Jonathan Huberdeau. "But the goal scoring has been a bonus. He's a very smart, instinctive player. I think he's still learning and needs to improve his complete game, but he's on the rise with the kind of start he's had."

"Beaulieu is a very good skater," the scout said. "He didn't get off to a great start, but he's done better over the last month or so, and has the skills to be a fine NHL prospect. I'm not sure of his upside, but with his size and mobility, he's up there."

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

DOGS-TITAN MATCH RESCHEDULED

A new date for last Saturday’s postponed Saint John Sea Dogs – Acadie-Bathurst Titan match has been announced.

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League today announced via a press release that Game #234 between the two will be played on Wednesday, December 1 at the K.C. Irving Regional Centre in Bathurst at 7:30 pm.

The game was originally set to be played last Saturday at the KC Irving Regional Centre but was forced to be postponed due to poor weather conditions. The Sea Dogs team bus was unable to get to the match on time because of highway issues.
A Wednesday night game that was not originally scheduled in Bathurst sounds like an attendance nightmare.

Saint John plays the Titan on Friday at Harbour Station as well. The Dogs then host the Halifax Mooseheads Sunday before travelling to Bathurst Wednesday. The Sea Dogs play two more games the following the weekend – both at home.

After this Friday's game in Saint John, the Titan travel to Cape Breton to play the Screaming Eagles on Sunday.

SEA DOGS REMAIN THIRD

For the second straight week, the Saint John Sea Dogs sit third in the BMO CHL Mastercard Top 10 Rankings.

The Sea Dogs played only one game this week after their Saturday match in Bathurst was postponed due to poor weather. On Sunday afternoon, Saint John defeated the Moncton Wildcats 9-7 in an eventful and bizarre contest at the Moncton Coliseum.

Saint John is tied with the Quebec Remaprts for first place overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League with 40 points. The Dogs now have a six point lead first place in the Maritime Division.

The Remparts remain fourth in the Canadian Hockey League Top 10 this week. The Montreal come in at #7. The Lewiston MAINEiacs were an honourable mention.

Here are the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings for week 10:

1. Mississauga St. Michael's Majors (20-2-0-1)
2. Portland Winterhawks (20-4-0-1)
3. Saint John Sea Dogs (19-3-0-2)
4. Quebec Remparts (19-5-0-2)
5. Saginaw Spirit (17-4-2-1)
6. Saskatoon Blades (17-5-0-1)
7. Montreal Juniors (18-4-2-1)
8. Owen Sound Attack (16-5-0-1)
9. Kootenay Ice (16-6-0-2)
10. Kitchener Rangers (16-5-0-1)

Honourable Mention:
Lewiston MAINEiacs (18-8-0-2)
Red Deer Rebels (16-7-1-1)
Ottawa 67's (16-9-0-0)
This week, Saint John plays host to the Acadie-Bathurst Titan on Friday and the Halifax Mooseheads on Sunday.

VIDEO: The Hit

Michael Kirkpatrick's hit on Alex MacDonald has made it's way to the magical YouTube machine.



The Saint John Sea Dogs’ Kirkpatrick was suspended three games by the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League yesterday.

Suspension length seems appropriate.

Huge props to Chris Phillips over at HockeyFights.com for the upload once again.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

QMJHL SUSPENDS KIRKPATRICK


The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League has come down hard on Michael Kirkpatrick.

The Saint John Sea Dogs forward has been suspended three games by the QMJHL following his hit from behind during Sunday’s complete mess 9-7 win in Moncton.

As always, “the decisions were rendered after reviewing the videotapes of the incidents, gathering testimonies from the players and the organizations involved, reading the officials’ reports and consulting the independent committee in the matter of disciplinary sanctions,” states to a QMJHL press release.

“The Disciplinary Prefect will not be available for further comment.”

Kirkpatrick was given a checking from behind major and a game misconduct after he nailed Moncton Wildcat defenseman Alex MacDonald along the end boards in the Moncton zone during the third period. The Sea Dogs' 20-year old skated in hard on MacDonald and pushed him into the boards.

Kirkpatrick was involved in a bit of scrum beside the Wildcats net, including some punches by Moncton goaltender Shane Owen, before exiting the ice.

MacDonald sat face first on the ice for a few moments with a Wildcats trainer before heading back to the bench. He would be okay.

It was timely penalty for Saint John, as it gave Moncton a five minute power play with 6:44 to go in an 8-6 game. This game officially had it all.

Kirkpatrick certainly is not known for attacks like this. In 24 games this season he has 23 penalty minutes. The North Sydney native has eight goals and 22 assists which places him second in team scoring. He has been playing on a line with Steven Anthony and Stanislav Galiev of late, a line that has proven to be solid.

The Sea Dogs' next three games are all at home. Saint John hosts Bathurst Friday, Halifax on Sunday, and Lewiston next Friday. Not the easiest of schedules – but not the hardest either.

No video of the hit has popped up yet.
The Disciplinary Prefect, Raymond Bolduc, also announced today that Rouyn-Noranda Huskies winger Christophe Déry has been suspended for a total of three games for high-sticking.

OLIVER-DARES NAMED TO TEAM ATLANTIC

Devon Oliver-Dares showed a lot of promise during his time on the Saint John Sea Dogs roster earlier this season. Although the Dogs prospect is no longer with the big club, Oliver-Dares will get a chance to play with and against some of the best under-17 year old players on the planet this winter.

Today, the 16-year old was named to Team Atlantic for the 2011 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge which takes place in Winnipeg/Portage la Prairie, Manitoba from December 29th- January 4th.

With the 54th overall pick of the 2010 Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Entry Draft, Saint John selected the Dartmouth native. Oliver-Dares played in 30 regular season games with the Ice Dawgs last year, registering 18 goals and 33 assists. He added five assists in seven playoff games.

He also competed in one Maritime Junior ‘A’ game last season, recording no points with the Bridgewater Lumberjacks.

Oliver-Dares stood out for most of training camp and looked excellent, showing the ability to be a hard working grinder with some skill as well. In five pre-season games with Saint John, he recorded no points and 13 penalty minutes. He was cut from the team just prior to the Sea Dogs’ regular season opener.

But with several forwards away at National Hockey League training camps, Olivier-Dares was recalled just two days later.

In four games with Saint John, the rookie scored no points, recorded a -1 rating, and had 11 penalty minutes. His most memorable moment came when he dropped the gloves at the Charlottetown Civic Centre in a scrap against the PEI Rocket’s Kevin Boyer.

Monday, November 22, 2010

POSTSCRIPT: Sea Dogs 9, Wildcats 7

By Station Nation Staff

SEA DOGS – WILDCATS GAME AT A GLANCE
Final Score: Saint John 9, Moncton 7
Saint John Goals: Stanislav Galiev (11), Jonathan Huberdeau (16), Zack Phillips (14), Guillaume Cloutier (2), Mike Thomas (5), Steven Anthony (8), Ryan Tesink (6), Stephen MacAulay (7), and Simon Despres (5)
Moncton Goals: Daniel Milan (9, 10), Alex Saulnier (11, 12), Allain Saulnier (11), Daniel Pettersson (17), and Marek Hrivik (11)
Winning Goaltenders: SNB – Jacob DeSerres and Frederic Piche
Losing Goaltender: MON – Shane Owen

THE NUMBERS
Power Play: Wildcats: 5/8, Sea Dogs: 0/3
Shots on Goal: Wildcats: 10+10+10=30, Sea Dogs: 14+16+11=41
Length: 2:32
Attendance: 5,290

SAINT JOHN SCRATCHES
Forward Jason Cameron and defenseman Tyrone Sock were healthy scratches.

WHOA. DOGS WIN 9-7.
What in the world was that?

"As coaches, you don't like this kind of a game," said Saint John head coach Gerard Gallant o the Times & Transcript. "I'm sure they're exciting with all the goals and us battling back, but both teams got a lot of work to do because I'm sure both sides don't like that game. We were fortunate to get the two points."

In what was one of the craziest games ever seen between these two provincial rivals, Patrick Roy’s theory of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League becoming a defensive styled game was shot out the window.

The Saint John Sea Dogs and Moncton Wildcats combined for 16 goals on Sunday afternoon at the Moncton Coliseum, a match that resulted in the visitors coming back to win 9-7.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

WILD WIN FOR DOGS IN WILDTOWN

SN RECAP
FINAL: Sea Dogs 9, Wildcats 7

MONCTON – It was a wild one in Wildtown.

In the first period, it looked as though the Moncton Wildcats would walk over the Saint John Sea Dogs as they have done in the past at the Moncton Coliseum.

But not on this day.

Moncton took a 4-0 lead into the final minute of the first period and looked as though they would be able to carry that momentum over into the second period. But a late Guillaume Cloutier goal seemed to give the Sea Dogs just that little boost necessary to create a comeback.

Saint John stormed back, scoring five goals in the middle frame to take a 6-4 lead into the third. After a mix of this-and-that in the final stanza, the Dogs ended up with a bizarre 9-7 win.

Stanislav Galiev, Jonathan Huberdeau, Zack Phillips, Cloutier, Mike Thomas, Steven Anthony, Ryan Tesink, Stephen MacAulay, and Simon Despres all scored for Saint John. Goaltending was a factor early on as Frederic Piche allowed two weak goals on three shots. He was then replaced by Jacob DeSerres who played well, stopping 22 shots to pick up the win.

Daniel Milan and Alex Saulnier each scored a pair while Allain Saulnier, Daniel Pettersson, and Marek Hrivik added singles. Goaltender Shane Owen allowed all eight goals on 37 shots.

The sluggish start likely had something to do with the Sea Dogs being stranded for most of the day on a highway to Bathurst yesterday. Once the Saint John got their legs moving, they were the better team for the majority of the match.

LIVE BLOG: Sea Dogs vs Wildcats

PRE-GAME: Rivalry Cup Game 2 - Saint John Sea Dogs vs Moncton Wildcats

By Station Nation Staff

GAME DAY
WHO: Saint John Sea Dogs vs Moncton Wildcats
WHEN: Today, 7:00 pm
WHERE: Moncton Coliseum

VISITING TEAM: Saint John Sea Dogs
Record: 18-3-0-2 (1st in Maritimes Division)
Last Game: 6-0 win vs Quebec Sunday
Leading Scorer: Jonathan Huberdeau (23GP-15G-15A-30Pts) and Michael Kirkpatrick (23GP-8G-22A-30Pts)
Notes: The Saint John Sea Dogs enter today’s action with a 18-3-0-2 which is good for first in the Maritimes Division and a tie for second overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League... ranked third in Canada this week in the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings… Saint John is coming off a dominating performance against the Remparts on Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station. The Sea Dogs won 6-0 on goals from Tomas Jurco, Stanislav Galiev, Pierre Durepos, Jonathan Huberdeau, Mike Thomas, and Stephen MacAulay. Goaltender Jacob DeSerres made 22 saves for his second shutout of the season… the Sea Dogs are also tied with the Remparts for tops in the league with 106 goals. The Dogs are averaging just under five goals per game… Saint John has allowed the fewest goals against in the QMJHL with only 59 scored against them in 23 contests… they are 8-1-0-1 in their last 10 games with their last loss coming in Bathurst against the Titan on October 22…. the Sea Dogs are on their hottest stretch of the season. They have only won two consecutive games but have collected at least a point in their last nine contests… 7-3-0-1 on the road this season and have outscored their opposition 45-33 along the way. Their last road game was on October 31 in Rouyn-Noranda where they trounced the Huskies 7-0. Their last road loss was a 5-1 defeat in Bathurst on October 22… Saint John’s power play continues to be middle-of-the-pack despite being one of the league leaders on offense. They enter action ranked ninth in the league with a rating of 0.206… the Sea Dogs’ penalty kill has slipped to fifth overall in the league with a rating of 0.830… Jonathan Huberdeau and Michael Kirkpatrick are tied for the team lead in points with 30 in 23 games… Huberdeau leads the team in goals with 15, plus/minus with a rating of +26, and penalty minutes with 31… Kirkpatrick leads the club in helpers with 22… if Saint John’s goaltending rotation holds true, Frederic Piche should get the call between the pipes today. The former Titan netminder has a goals against average of 2.33, a save percentage of 0.917 to go along with a solid 9-1-0-2 record… 9-2-0-0 against Maritimes Division teams this year… Huberdeau’s +26 rating is the best in the QMJHL.

HOME TEAM: Moncton Wildcats
Record: 16-8-0-2 (2nd in Maritimes Division)
Last Game: 5-2 win vs Rouyn-Noranda yesterday
Leading Scorer: Alex Saulnier (26GP-10G-22A-32Pts)
Notes: With a victory last night, the Moncton Wildcats enter today’s game with a 16-8-0-2 record to give them sole possession of second place in the Maritimes Division. Moncton’s record is good for sixth overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League… the Wildcats are coming off a 5-2 win over the bottom feeding Rouyn-Noranda Huskies last night at the Moncton Coliseum. Daniel Milan, Olivier Daoust, and Alex Saulnier, all scored singles while Daniel Pettersson added a pair. Devon MacAusland had two assists. Goaltender Shane Owen stopped 30 shots for the win as the Huskies surprisingly outshot Moncton 32-28 including 14-6 in the final frame… 5-5-0-0 in their last 10 games and have won two straight contests… Moncton has the fifth best power play in the league with a rating of 0.268… owners of the seventh best penalty kill with a rating of 0.808… Alex Saulnier is a point ahead of his twin brother, Allain, for the team point scoring lead with 32. Alex also leads the team in assists with 22… Pettersson leads the team in goals with 16 in 26 games… Shane Owen will likely get the start in goal for Moncton this afternoon. The 20-year old has a 9-6-0-2 record, a 2.85 goals against average, and a 0.915 save percentage… Pettersson and Marek Hrivik are the only Wildcats to score against Saint John in the one meeting between the two teams back on October 8 at Harbour Station. Olivier Daoust had a team high four shots on goal. Netminder Shane Owen allowed six goals on 28 shots before being pulled. The Wildcats were outshot 35-21 in the game… star defenseman Brandon Gormley is fourth in the league in power play goals with six… Moncton has been hit by the injury bug. According to the Times & Transcript yesterday, defenseman Simon Jodoin (concussion) and forwards Jordan Carroll (knee) and Ted Stephens (concussion) are all expected to be out of today’s game… Moncton will also be without Cedric Leblanc and Tyler Howe who have both been suspended for today’s match following their actions in a game against the Gatineau Olympiques last weekend… the Wildcats have recalled Matt Tomah from the junior ‘A’ Woodstock Slammers to help fill some of the holes in the lineup. Tomah had an eventful game last night, dropping the gloves with Gabriel O’Conner, the Huskies’ captain, in the first period.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

SEA DOGS - TITAN GAME POSTPONED

Tonight’s Quebec Major Junior Hockey League matchup between the Saint John Sea Dogs and Acadie-Bathurst Titan has been postponed due to inclement weather conditions in the northern New Brunswick area.

The game was scheduled to be played this evening at 7:00 pm at the KC Irving Regional Centre.

According to a QMJHL press release, “an announcement will be made in the next few days regarding a new date for the game.”

According to several reports, it’s been snowing steadily all day in the Bathurst region, causing some slick road conditions and all that good stuff.

QMJHL referee Jeff Hopkins, who was on his way to work a maritime junior ‘A’ game in Miramichi, tweeted earlier that “the guys going to Bathurst are supposedly at a standstill on highway.”

The Environment Canada forecast for Bathurst this evening:

Flurries ending near midnight then cloudy periods with 30 percent chance of flurries. Amount 2 cm. Wind becoming northwest 30 km/h gusting to 50 this evening. Low minus 7.
Last season, two Sea Dogs home games were postponed on the same weekend because of a large dumping of white stuff. Before those two games, a Sea Dogs game in PEI was delayed 45 minutes because the Confederation Bridge was closed to high sided vehicles.

In 2008-09, a game in Halifax was postponed because of trying road conditions in the southern New Brunswick area. Then back during the 2007-08 season, the Sea Dogs – Drakkar game in Baie-Comeau was postponed after two periods due to a power outage inside the Henry Leonard Centre.

Luckily for the Sea Dogs, a postponed game in Bathurst won’t cause as much trouble as a postponed game in northern Quebec.

The Sea Dogs play in Moncton tomorrow afternoon and then don’t play again until Friday night when they host the Titan at Harbour Station. This was scheduled to be Saint John’s only weekend on the road this month.

Puck drop tomorrow at the Moncton Coliseum is 4:00 pm.

PRE-GAME: Saint John Sea Dogs vs Acadie-Bathurst Titan

By Station Nation Staff

GAME DAY
WHO: Acadie-Bathurst Titan vs Saint John Sea Dogs
WHEN: Tonight, 7:00 pm
WHERE: KC Irving Regional Centre

VISITING TEAM: Saint John Sea Dogs
Record: 18-3-0-2 (1st in Maritimes Division)
Last Game: 6-0 win vs Quebec Sunday
Leading Scorer: Jonathan Huberdeau (23GP-15G-15A-30Pts) and Michael Kirkpatrick (23GP-8G-22A-30Pts)
Notes: The Saint John Sea Dogs enter today’s action with a 18-3-0-2 record which is good for first in the Maritimes Division and a tie for first overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The Sea Dogs are tied with the Quebec Remparts at the top of the league with 38 points but have played two fewer games than Patrick Roy’s club… ranked third in Canada this week in the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings… Saint John is coming off a dominating performance against the Remparts on Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station. The Sea Dogs won 6-0 on goals from Tomas Jurco, Stanislav Galiev, Pierre Durepos, Jonathan Huberdeau, Mike Thomas, and Stephen MacAulay. Goaltender Jacob DeSerres made 22 saves for his second shutout of the season… the Sea Dogs are also tied with the Remparts for tops in the league with 106 goals. The Dogs are averaging just under five goals per game… Saint John has allowed the fewest goals against in the QMJHL with only 59 scored on them in 23 contests… they are 8-1-0-1 in their last 10 games with their last loss coming in Bathurst against the Titan on October 22…. the Sea Dogs are on their hottest stretch of the season. They have won just two consecutive games but have collected at least a point in their last nine games… 7-3-0-1 on the road this season and have outscored their opposition 45-33 along the way. Their last road game was on October 31 in Rouyn-Noranda where they trounced the Huskies 7-0. Their last road loss was a 5-1 defeat in Bathurst on October 22… Saint John’s power play continues to be middle-of-the-pack despite being one of the two league leaders on offense. They enter action ranked ninth in the league with a rating of 0.206… the Sea Dogs’ penalty kill has slipped to fifth overall in the league with a rating of 0.830… Jonathan Huberdeau and Michael Kirkpatrick are tied for the team lead in points with 30 in 23 games… Huberdeau leads the team in goals with 15, plus/minus with a rating of +26, and penalty minutes with 31… Kirkpatrick leads the club in helpers with 22… if Saint John’s goaltending rotation holds true, Frederic Piche should get the call between the pipes this evening. The former Titan netminder has a goals against average of 2.33, a save percentage of 0.917 to go along with a solid 9-1-0-2 record. “I want to win (in Bathurst) and prove our team is better than they are,” he told the Telegraph-Journal today.

HOME TEAM: Acadie-Bathurst Titan
Record: 16-9-0-0 (2nd in Maritimes Division)
Last Game: 4-2 win at PEI Wednesday
Leading Scorer: Gabriel Levesque (25GP-9G-26A-35Pts)
Notes: The Acadie-Bathurst Titan come into today’s game with a 16-9-0-0 record which is good for a tie with the Moncton Wildcats for second in the Maritimes Division and in a three way tie for sixth overall in the league… the Titan are coming off a 4-2 over the PEI Rocket Wednesday night in Charlottetown. Jonathan Lessard scored two goals while singles came from Zach O’Brien and Sebastien Trudeau (empty net). Olivier Roy made 31 saves to pick up the win. The Titan jumped out to a 3-0 lead and held on to win… the Titan are 8-4-0-0 at the KC Irving Regional Centre this season yet have been outscored on home ice 40-39… the Titan power play is ranked seventh in the QMJHL with a rating of 0.218… Bathurst’s penalty killing unit is ranked second in the league behind the Drummondville Voltigeurs. The Titan have a kill-off rating of 0.841… Gabriel Levesque leads the Titan in scoring with 35 points in 25 contests. His 26 assists is also a team high… Sebastien Trudeau leads the club in goals with 13… the Titan’s plus/minus stats are nothing to be amazed about. Levesque leads the way with a +9 rating there are many on the team with a minus… star goaltender Olivier Roy will likely get the call in net tonight. He has a record of 9-7-0-0, a goals against average of 2.80, and a save percentage of 0.913… the Titan’s penalty leader is tough guy Christophe Losier. Losier leads the Titan in fights this season with seven. Bathurst has dropped the gloves 23 times this year while Saint John has been involved in just nine… the Titan are expected to be without defenseman Jeremie Blain who injured his foot back in September while blocking a shot.

Friday, November 19, 2010

SEA DOGS NOTEBOOK

DELISLE PLAYING TONIGHT
Steven Delisle is expected to suit up for his first professional hockey game tonight with the Central Hockey League’s Fort Wayne Komets, reports The Journal Gazette.

The 20-year old defenseman had spent the earlier portion of the 2010-11 campaign with American Hockey League’s Springfield Falcons but had not played in a game.

If you haven’t heard, his rights were traded to Saint John last week from the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in exchange for a 12th round draft pick in the 2012 QMJHL Entry Draft. At the moment, it looks unlikely that he will return to junior for an overage season. But crazier things have happened.

"If he comes great, it's just an asset we have,” said Sea Dogs associate coach and director of hockey operations Mike Kelly said to the Telegraph-Journal on Monday. “If he doesn't, then he doesn't. At the very least, we have control over where he goes if he comes back (to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League). Right now, he's focused on being a professional hockey player.''

Judging by the comments sections of a few Fort Wayne newspapers, Komets fans are in panic mode after a disappointing start to the season. They sit last in the Turner Conference with a 2-6-1 record.

SEA DOGS TOP POWER RANKINGS
After earning 17 of a possible 18 points in their last nine games, the Sea Dogs are the toped ranked QMJHL team in this week’s edition of the Open Ice Hockey Power Rankings.

Only the Sea Dogs, Lewiston Maineiacs, and Shawinigan Cataractes were 2-0-0-0 last week.

The rankings are calculated using a formula based on weekly and season long play.


FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Four Goal Leads Aren't Always Safe

Ed. Note: Each Friday, SN takes a look at a moment(s) in Sea Dogs history. In a continuing trend of random topics that make little sense to any current event, we look back at two wins featuring four goal leads from the 2007-08 season.

Earlier this season, the Saint John Sea Dogs blew a 5-1 mid-second period lead to fall to the Drummondville Voltigeurs 7-6 in a shootout. Back during the 2007-2008 campaign, two memorable matches featured some whacky events surrounding four goal leads as well.

Back on October 27, 2007, the Sea Dogs climbed out of a 5-1 second period lead themselves. It was easily one of the most entertaining games ever played by the Sea Dogs (at the time). This game is also high on our list of the greatest Alex Grant moments in team history.

Just how remarkable was this game at the time? Just look at the Sea Dogs’ website game recap opening paragraph:

Harbour Station bore witness to an event fraught with awesomeness on Saturday night, as the Saint John Sea Dogs earned their tenth win of the season in amazingly dramatic fashion, erasing a four-goal deficit in handing the St. John's Fog Devils a 6-5 shootout loss.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

VIDEO: Thomas Finally Fights

Last Saturday, the city of Saint John stood still as Sea Dogs captain Mike Thomas dropped the gloves for the first time this season, taking on Christophe Losier.



What a tilt.

The fight came of 2:14 of the second period following a Saint John goal. It was a clear win for Thomas.

Strangely enough, according to HockeyFights.com, Thomas’ last Quebec Major Junior Hockey League regular season fight came on February 27, 2010 against none other than Christophe Losier who was then with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies.

Thomas seems to have found the balance that is required of him in order to play in the QMJHL. After a suspension filled 2009-10 season, the New Maryland native has just 15 penalty minutes in as many games. He has been quite productive, recording four goals and four assists while playing on the third line.

The Sea Dogs play the Acadie-Bathurst Titan Saturday at the KC Irving Regional Centre.

SAINT JOHN'S DEFENSE TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS

23 games into the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League season, the Saint John Sea Dogs are once again leading the way in offensive output.

This isn’t much of a surprise. With a solid core of young skill in Jonathan Huberdeau, Zach Phillips, Tomas Jurco, and Stanislav Galiev and veterans Michael Kirkpatrick and Steven Anthony, point production hasn’t/shouldn’t been an issue.

The Sea Dogs lead the league in goals scored with 106 for an average of 4.6 goals per game. They led the QMJHL in goals scored last season with 309 in 68 games for an average of 4.5.

But pleasantly surprising has been Saint John’s defense core. Not only does the team lead the way in goals scored in the 'Q', but they are tied with the Quebec Remparts and Shawinigan Cataractes for the fewest amount of goals allowed this season with 59.

Saint John’s defense has quietly been very good this season. You’re always hearing about Huberdeau, Jurco, and Phillips, but, other than Despres and Nathan Beaulieu, how often does Kevin Gagne, Gabriel Bourret, Guillaume Cloutier, Tyrone Sock, and Pierre Durepos come up in conversation?

The defense has a nice mix of experienced players and fresh faces. It was obvious at the start of the year that a calm and cool veteran like Despres was needed, but since his return, the ‘D’ has really stepped it up.

Just check out this fascinating statistical analysis:

Pierre Durepos: +15
Guillaume Cloutier: +14
Nathan Beaulieu: +13
Simon Despres: +11
Gabriel Bourret: +10
Kevin Gagne: +6
Tyrone Sock: +5
We can only imagine what the addition of Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Steven Delisle would do to this team.
But, of course, it hasn’t just been the defense core that has helped Saint John win games. The third line featuring forwards Mike Thomas, Danick Gauthier, and Stephen MacAulay has been nothing short of shutdown city this season.

So even with an unreal amount of talented offensive weapons, Saint John’s defensive game shouldn’t be overlooked.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

SEA DOGS JUMP TO #3 IN CHL

Does beating the #3 team in the Canadian Hockey League by score of 6-0 make the victor the new #3 team?

Well, apparently, it does.

A 6-0 blowout win over the Quebec Remparts on Sunday afternoon at Harbour Station helped make the Saint John Sea Dogs the new #3 team in the weekly BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings.

The Sea Dogs, who were ranked #4 last week, made the jump after a 2-0-0-0 week over two very solid opponents. The Dogs beat the Acadie-Bathurst Titan 5-3 on Saturday night before wrecking the Remparts the following day.

Along with the Sea Dogs at #3 and the Remparts at #4, the Montreal Juniors were the only other Quebec Major Junior Hockey League team represented in this week’s rankings coming in at #9. The Drummondville Voltigeurs were an honourable mention.

The weekly rankings of the CHL’s Top 10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.

Here are the BMO CHL MasterCard Top Rankings for week nine:

1 Mississauga St. Michael's Majors (17-2-0-1)
2 Portland Winterhawks (19-3-0-1)
3 Saint John Sea Dogs (18-3-0-2)
4 Quebec Remparts (17-4-0-2)
5 Saginaw Spirit (15-4-1-1)
6 Saskatoon Blades (14-5-0-1)
7 Owen Sound Attack (14-4-0-1)
8 Kootenay Ice (15-4-0-2) 8 3
9 Montreal Juniors (16-4-2-1)
10 Kitchener Rangers (15-5-0-0)

Honourable Mention:
Drummondville Voltigeurs (17-7-2-1)
Red Deer Rebels (14-6-1-1)
Ottawa 67's (14-8-0-0)
Despite the Sea Dogs’ success in the first few weeks of the season, it was obvious that there were some challenges that would have to be sorted out. But over the past few weeks, the Sea Dogs have hit cruise control and haven’t hit many bumps along the way. Saint John has collected at least a point in their last nine games and are 8-1-0-1 in their last 10.

Saint John will be challenged again this weekend when they travel to Bathurst for the second time this season on Saturday. In their first appearance, the Titan downed the Dogs 5-1. Then on Sunday, the Port City juniors travel to Moncton for the first time since Game Six of the 2010 President’s Cup Final.

HOWE, LEBLANC SUSPENDED FOR SUNDAY'S GAME

The Moncton Wildcats will be without two players when they take on the Saint John Sea Dogs this Sunday.

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Disciplinary Prefect, Raymond Bolduc, today suspended two Wildcats for incidents which occurred during last Sunday’s game versus the Gatineau Olympiques.

The Wildcats won the game 5-4 in overtime with a total of 80 penalty minutes handed out between the two teams.

Cédric Leblanc has been suspended for four games for his hit on the beloved Hugo Laporte. After Jean-Gabriel Pageau gave the Olympiques their first goal of the game at 16:56 of the second period, Leblanc skated by the Gatineau players celebrating and gave Laporte a punch to the head.

SEA DOGS NOTEBOOK

ST. LAURENT OFF TO SOLID START
Former Sea Dogs netminder Karel St. Laurent is off to a solid start with the British Columbia Junior ‘A’ Hockey League’s Surrey Eagles.

St. Laurent made his debut on November 4th in Langley, an 8-4 Eagles win. Saint John’s backup goaltender in 2008-09 and 2009-10 made 37 saves in the victory. He then backstopped Surrey to a 5-4 overtime win over Langley the next night.

"He hadn't played for two or three weeks and he admits in the first game there were one or two goals he would like back," Eagles head coach Matt Erhart told Surrey Now last Tuesday. "He was better the next two nights; he made some big saves for us, especially in the third period and overtime Friday. He's been really solid for us."

"He played major junior hockey for the past three years," the coach said. "He's been on a really good team for the past two years as one of the two goalies playing for them. When he became available we thought he would be a good addition to the team."

THE POUTINE
SN reader Paul Leger has been telling us about his dream of having poutine sold at Harbour Station for quite awhile.

So, Paul has created a online petition to help support the movement. Apparently, Harbour Station doesn’t currently have the proper equipment to make the cheese and gravy goodness. We encourage everyone to sign, mainly because Harbour Station menu options are few and far between.

We still don’t know how you can have a QUEBEC Major Junior Hockey League team and not sell poutine.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

7 DOGS MAKE CENTRAL SCOUTING LIST

After much anticipation from fans, scouts, and wannabe scouts, National Hockey League Central Scouting released their preliminary rankings for the 2011 NHL Entry Draft this morning.

Not surprisingly, the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League portion of the rankings was dominated by Saint John Sea Dogs players. A total of seven players appeared on the list of the league’s top 25 skaters entering draft eligibility with five of them being placed in the top 10.

"It's going to be a better year than the past couple, but I've seen some of the kids in Ontario and they're looking pretty good, too," Central Scouting's Chris Bordeleau, who scouts the QMJHL, told NHL.com. "We can't get too overly excited. I'm kind of prudent, because it's happened before. I don't want to get too excited too early, but the top 15 players out of the 'Q' are looking all decent."

Drummondville Voltigeurs forward Sean Couturier, who many have pegged as the first overall pick in this June’s draft in Minnesota, was the top ranked QMJHL skater.

Monday, November 15, 2010

POSTSCRIPT: Remparts 0, Sea Dogs 6

By Station Nation Staff

SEA DOGS – REMPARTS GAME AT A GLANCE
Final Score: Quebec 0, Saint John 6
Saint John Goals: Tomas Jurco (12), Stanislav Galiev (10), Pierre Durepos (1), Jonathan Huberdeau (15), Mike Thomas (4), and Stephen MacAulay (6)
Quebec Goals: None
Winning Goaltender: Jacob DeSerres
Losing Goaltenders: Louis Domingue and Jimmy Appleby
News 88.9 Top Dog: Danick Gauthier

THE NUMBERS
Power Play: Remparts: 0/5, Sea Dogs 1/6
Shots on Goal: Remparts: 6+9+7=22, Sea Dogs: 15+12+8=35
Length: 2:12
Attendance: 4,315

SAINT JOHN SCRATCHES
Kevin Gagne missed his second straight game with what News 88.9 reported as an “upper body injury.” Today’s Telegraph-Journal had more:

Sea Dogs defenceman Kevin Gagne missed both weekend games with a concussion. The 18-year-old Edmundston native hopes to return to the lineup for Saturday's road game against Acadie-Bathurst.
Aidan Kelly sat out as the extra forward.

DOMINATION. SEA DOGS WIN 6-0.
A surprisingly dominate performance by the Saint John Sea Dogs sent a message to the Quebec Remparts. Going into yesterday’s match, the two teams were tied for the highest winning percentage in the league.

Saint John scored four goals in the first period and added two more in the second to cruise by Quebec 6-0 yesterday in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League play at Harbour Station.

"We competed and everything went well for us early,” said Sea Dogs head coach Gerard Gallant to the Telegraph-Journal. “We knew it was going to be a challenge, but we did everything we wanted to do.''

Tomas Jurco made it 1-0 Saint John 10:36 on the power play when he fired a low shot through traffic that found the back-of-the-net. The Sea Dogs doubled their lead at 13:07. Steven Anthony fed Stanislav Galiev with a nice pass, allowing the Russian to record his 10th of the season.

Saint John made it 3-0 at 15:02 when Pierre Durepos let a shot go from just above the hash marks and beat Remparts goaltender Louis Domingue high glove side. The Sea Dogs wouldn’t stop there as they scored their fourth goal at 16:05. The Remparts defense looked a but confused on the play, allowing Jurco and Jonathan Huberdeau to have a long two-on-none opportunity. Huberdeau embarrassed Domingue with an unreal deke to make it 4-0 after one.

Captain Mike Thomas got in on the action at 6:35 of the second period when he beat Jimmy Appleby – who replaced Domingue in the Remparts goal after the fourth marker – in close to give Saint John a 5-0 lead and officially make it blowout city.

The third line kept rolling when Stephen MacAulay scored at 15:31, a goal that would end up being the final marker of the hockey game.

In the third, neither team looked to ambitious about scoring goals. The game would end with the Sea Dogs being victorious by score of 6-0.

BOURRET NAMED QMJHL'S FIRST STAR

Gabriel Bourret isn’t exactly known for his offensive output.

In 37 games as a rookie with the Saint John Sea Dogs last year, the defenseman registered three goals and seven assists under limited playing time.

But this season, Bourret has seen an increase in ice time and point production. In 21 games with the league leading Sea Dogs, he has four goals and 12 assists – including six helpers in his last two games.

His hot streak has earned him first star honours in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Telus Three Stars of the Week.

“The young blue-liner led the Sea Dogs with six points - all assists - and also posted an excellent +5 rating in victories over two of the best teams in the QMJHL: The Acadie-Bathurst Titan and the Quebec Remparts,” noted the QMJHL website. “Furthermore, he was named the first star in both contests.”

Bourret was solid in both Saint John’s 5-3 win over Bathurst Saturday and on Sunday when the Sea Dogs blew out the Quebec Remparts 6-0. The 18-year old recorded four assists in yesterday’s match along with a +3 rating while only recording one shot on goal.

The native of Laprairie, Quebec was also named Buzzing The Net’s first star yesterday out of the entire Canadian Hockey League for his beast-like efforts.

Montreal Juniors goaltender Jean-Francois Berube, who played in Monday’s Subway Super Series game at Harbour Station, was named the second star of the week. Benjamin Casavant of the Shawinigan Cataractes was named the third star.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

BLOWOUT AT THE STATION

SN RECAP
FINAL: Remparts 0, Sea Dogs 6

SAINT JOHN – The most anticipated match of the young season ended in an unexpected way.

Four first period goals propelled the Saint John Sea Dogs to a rather easy 6-0 victory over the Quebec Remparts on Sunday afternoon afternoon at Harbour Station in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action.

The Sea Dogs jumped out to an early lead and never looked book, dominating the Remparts who were the #3 team in the country in this week’s BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings.

Tomas Jurco, Stanislav Galiev, Pierre Durepos, Jonathan Huberdeau, Mike Thomas, and Stephen MacAulay all scored for the winners. Defenseman Gabriel Bourret picked up his second straight first star honor with four assists.

Goaltender Jacob DeSerres, returning from a groin injury, was not tested too much. He made 22 saves to earn his second Sea Dogs shutout.

The Remparts looked a bit gassed as the game grew older. The team was playing their third game in three days. Louis Domingue was pulled after allowing six goals on 13 shots. Jimmy Appleby made 20 saves in relief.

LIVE BLOG: Remparts vs Sea Dogs

FORT WAYNE GIVING DELISLE A CHANCE

It doesn’t look like Steven Delisle will be a Saint John Sea Dog in the immediate future.

Delisle, whose rights were traded to Saint John Friday from the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in exchange for a 12th round pick in the 2012 Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Entry Draft, was assigned by the Columbus Blue Jackets to the Central Hockey League’s Fort Wayne Komets on Friday. He had been with the American Hockey League’s Springfield Falcons but had not played in a game.

News-Sentinel.com’s Komets blog, Tailing the Komets, posted this yesterday:

He’s a 6-6, 209 pound rookie defenseman who has not played yet this season. Komets GM David Franke said Delisle will be in town Sunday and at practice on Monday. He’ll be in the lineup Friday night.
So it looks like Delisle will get a shot at proffensional hockey in Fort Wayne.

The 20-year old Jackets prospect was considered a long shot to return to junior this season, especially after signing a three-year entry level deal with the Jackets over the summer.

It’s still a good gamble by the Sea Dogs as 12th round picks rarely amount to anything, and, given the timing of the trade, Saint John must. know something others do not. Let us not forget about Gerard Gallant's connections to Columbus as he was the head coach of the team from January 1, 2004 to November 13, 2006.

PRE-GAME: Quebec Remparts vs Saint John Sea Dogs

By Station Nation Staff

GAME DAY
WHO: Quebec Remparts vs Saint John Sea Dogs
WHEN: Today, 4:00 pm
WHERE: Harbour Station

NOTE: The new QMJHL website continues to suck. Apparently there was a problem with their server or something causing yesterday’s Remparts – Rocket game to not have the final stats recorded at the time of this posting.
VISITING TEAM: Quebec Remparts
Record: 17-3-0-2 (1st in Telus East Division)
Last Game: 4-3 overtime win at PEI yesterday
Leading Scorer: Jonathan Audy-Marchessault (22GP-12G-28A-40Pts)
Notes: The Quebec Remparts enter today’s game with a record of 17-3-0-2 which is good for first in the Telus East Division and a tie with the Saint John Sea Dogs for second overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. They sit one point behind the Drummondville Voltigeurs who have played four more games… ranked third in the Canadian Hockey League this week in the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings… the Remparts are coming off a 4-3 overtime victory in Charlottetown last night against the PEI Rocket. Ryan Bourque scored two goals including the game winner. Singles came courtesy of Frederick Roy and import sensation Mirko Hoefflin. Jimmy Appleby allowed three goals on 19 shots through two periods before giving way to Louis Domingue to start the third. “We were challenged tonight,” said Quebec head coach Patrick Roy to PEIRocket.com after the game… the Remparts are 8-2-0-2 away from home this season and have outscored their opposition 47-35 along the way. Their eight road wins ties them with the Voltigeurs and the Moncton Wildcats for the league high… 6-3-0-1 in their last 10 games. They have won two straight… as they have been known for over the past few years, Quebec likes to score goals. They are second only to the Sea Dogs in goals scored with 97... the Remparts have the best power play in the league with a rating of 0.351%... their power play may be the best in the league but their penalty kill isn’t by any means. They are currently ranked 10th in the league with an efficiency of 0.787%... Jonathan Audy-Marchessault leads Quebec in scoring with 40 points in just 22 games which places him second in league scoring. His 28 assists also leads the team and places him second in the QMJHL among assist leaders… Joel Champagne and Tomas Filippi lead the team in goals with 13 each… Alex Wall leads the club in plus/minus with a +23 rating… Domingue will likely get the start in goal toady for the Remparts. He has a record of 13-2-0-1, a goals against average of 2.18 and a save percentage of 0.901%... this is the final game of a three game road trip through the Maritimes for Quebec. They wrecked the Titan on Friday night in Bathurst, winning 5-2 and outshot them 49-15. They defeated PEI in overtime last night and will now face their toughest test this afternoon in Saint John.

HOME TEAM: Saint John Sea Dogs
Record: 17-3-0-2 (1st in Atlantic Division)
Last Game: 5-3 win vs Bathurst yesterday
Leading Scorer: Michael Kirkpatrick (22GP-8G-21A-29Pts)
Notes: The Saint John Sea Dogs come into this afternoon’s contest with a record of 17-3-0-1 which places them first in the Maritime Division and in a tie for second overall in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League with the Quebec Remparts. They sit one point behind the Drummondville Voltigeurs who have played four more games… ranked fourth in the Canadian Hockey League this week in the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings… Saint John is coming off a 5-3 victory over the Acadie-Bathurst Titan last night at Harbour Station. Simon Despres, Steven Anthony, Michael Kirkpatrick, Scott Oke, and Tomas Jurco all scored for the winners who outshot Bathurst 39-33. Frederic Piche played all 60 minutes and allowed three goals on 33 shots. Mike Thomas also had his first fight of the season. Defenseman Gabriel Bourret was the first star with two assists… 8-1-0-1 in their last 10 games and are coming off a win. The Sea Dogs have picked up at least a point in their last eight games… 10-0-0-1 at home this season and are the only QMJHL team remaining that does not have a regulation loss on home ice… Michael Kirkpatrick has taken over the team point scoring lead with 29 points in 22 games. His 21 assists lead the team as well… Jonathan Huberdeau leads the team in goals with 14 in 22 matches. He also has a team best +25 rating… this is the final game of a four game homestand for Saint John. So far, they are 2-0-0-1. They hit the road for two games next weekend… it isn’t clear who will start in goal tonight but it was suggested on last night's News 88.9 broadcast that Jacob DeSerres may be ready to go. The 20-year has been suffering from a groin injury of late, forcing Frederic Piche to make a rare second straight start last night. DeSerres has a record of 4-1-0-0, a goals against average of 2.77, and a save percentage of 0.898%... Piche has a record of 9-1-0-2, a GAA of 2.33, and a SV% of 0.917%.