Friday, February 18, 2011

PRE-GAME: vs Val-d'Or Foreurs

Val-d'Or Foreurs vs Saint John Sea Dogs
Friday, February 18, 2011
7:30 pm, Harbour Station

SAINT JOHN – The Canadian Hockey League’s top-ranked team hits the ice this ice evening against the Val-d’Or Foreurs at 7:30 pm at Harbour Station.

The Sea Dogs, 46-5-1-2, sit first in the Maritimes Division and sit atop the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League standings. The Sea Dogs need two points via a victory or an Acadie-Bathurst Titan loss to clinch the division for the second-straight year.

Saint John has been red hot of late and are currently on an 11-game winning streak. They have also picked up a point in their last 18 contests, not losing in regulation since the calendar switched to 2011.

The Sea Dogs face an unfamiliar – yet familiar foe this evening. The Val-d’Or Foreurs enter Harbour Station tonight with a record of 21-27-4-2, placing them fifth in the Telus West Division and 14th overall in the QMJHL.

This will be the Foreurs’ only visit to Saint John this season (pending a playoff matchup). But, the two teams did meet-up twice earlier this season in the province of Quebec with the Dogs prevailing in both contests.

Val-d’Or is certainly battled tested, playing in the tough Telus West Division that features the Montreal Juniors and Drummondville Voltigeurs. The team is currently on a four-game road trip through the Maritimes that began with a 4-3 shootout loss in Bathurst Wednesday.

Saint John will be looking for a solid 60-minute effort this evening, something they didn’t get last Sunday against Moncton. It’s the same old story – the Sea Dogs can’t the Foreurs lightly, can’t look ahead to tomorrow’s hoopla, yadda, yadda, yadda.

Val-d'OrSaint John
Record21-27-4-2 (5th Telus West)46-5-1-2 (1st Maritimes)
Home Record- - -25-0-1-1
Road Record7-16-3-1- - -
Last 105-3-0-210-0-0-0
Goals For172259
Goals Against212134
Overall PP25.8% (4th)24/1% (7th)
Home PP- - -20.9% (9th)
Road PP24.4% (6th)- - -
Overall PK77.4% (14th)81.8% (4th)
Home PK- - -85.1% (3rd)
Road PK75% (16th)- - -
PIM/GAME16.3 (6th)13.2 (13th)

NOTES: 1-5-2-2 in their last 10 road games… Jonathan Hazen leads the team in goals with 33… Hazen also leads the club in assists with 32… Jean Francois Leblanc is second on the team in helpers with 26… Olivier Archambault is second on the team in goals with 19… Hazen leads the league in power play goals with 17… Artem Sergeev is 13th in rookie scoring with 25 points… averaging 3.13 goals per game… averaging 3.85 goals against per game… averaging 25.73 shots on goal per game – the third lowest in the league… averaging 30.02 shots against per game… 13-10-3-1 when scoring first... currently on a four game Maritime road swing.

EXPECTED STARTER: Jacob Gervais Chouinard has played the most minutes in net for the club and has a 17-21-3-2 record, a 3.38 goals against average, and a 0.885 save percentage. He made 29 saves in a shootout loss in Bathurst on Wednesday.

LAST GAME: The Foreurs are coming off a 4-3 shootout loss in Bathurst Wednesday night. Anthony Taylor, Artem Sergeev, and Nicolas Larocque-Marcoux all scored for Val-d’Or to give the club a 3-2 lead in the third. But Gabriel Levesque would score on a penalty shot in the final minute and then won the game in the breakaway contest to give the Titan the extra point.

Jonathan Hazen50333265
Jean-Francois Leblanc53162642
Olivier Archambault52192140

Best Foreurs video we could find on YouTube: A touching tribute to Steve Begin who spent three seasons with the Foreurs before joining the American Hockey League’s Saint John Flames in 1998-99.

HOME TEAM: Saint John Sea Dogs

NOTES: Jonathan Huberdeau leads the club in goals with 35 in 53 games this year… Zack Phillips now leads the team in assists this season with 47. Huberdeau is second with 46… Phillips is second in the team in goals with 30… Huberdeau has slipped to fourth in league scoring with 81 points and now sits 12 points back of Philip-Michael Devos… Phillips is fourth in the league in power play goals with 13… Mike Thomas is sixth in shorthanded goals with six… Phillips is third in game winning goals with seven… Tomas Jurco is second in insurance goals with six… Huberdeau is a league best +48 this season… Michael Kirkpatrick is second in the league in dangerous shots with 155… averaging a league high 4.80 goals per game… averaging a league low 2.48 goals against per game… averaging a league high 36.80 shots per game… allowing an average of 27.54 shots against per game, the fifth lowest in the league… Phillips is on a five-game assist getting streak… Jurco is on a seven game point streak. He is also on a three game home goal scoring streak.

EXPECTED STARTER: If the age-old goaltending rotation stays true, Mathieu Corbeil will get the call between the pipes this evening. Overall, Corbeil has a record of 13-15-1-1, a goals against average of 3.41, and a save percentage of 0.874. Since joining the Sea Dogs, the 19-year old has a record of 6-0-1-0, a GAA of 2.38, and a SV% of 0.898.

LAST GAME: Saint John is coming off a 3-2 shootout win at home against the Moncton Wildcats on Sunday. Tomas Jurco and Stanislav Galiev scored in the third period to send the match to extra time. Jurco and Jonathan Huberdeau each scored in the breakaway contest to give Saint John the win.

Jonathan Huberdeau53354681
Zack Phillips53304777
Michael Kirkpatrick51254166

From the Sea Dogs website:

With Irving Oil’s Minor Hockey Night in Saint John set for Friday, Irving Oil is offering a special ticket price promotion to ensure Harbour Station will be packed.

Upper bowl tickets to Friday’s against the Val-d’Or Foreurs will be available for only $5. The first 1,000 fans to order will be able to take advantage of this special price.
Irving is also making some kind of “special announcement.”

Former Sea Dog Nicolas Larocque-Marcoux now calls Val-d’Or home. The winger played a grand total of three games with the Sea Dogs during the 2008-09 season before being exchanged to Shawinigan.

In 27 games with the Foreurs this season, he has accumulated nine goals and 13 assists.

Venue: Harbour Station

Capacity: 6,297
Average Attendance: 4,143
QMJHL Arena Guide

Radio (Sea Dogs): News 88.9 FM
Live Web Feed: Telus
Television: None
Post-Game Coverage: Station Nation, Telegraph-Journal
Live Coverage: Follow Station Nation on Twitter ( for live in game coverage. All tweets will also appear in the SN Live Blog that is posted on this site.

The Sea Dogs host the Shawinigan Cataractes tomorrow night at 7:00 pm at Harbour Station.

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