A collection of recaps from around the interweb on last night’s 5-4 Kootenay Ice overtime victory over the Saint John Sea Dogs:
Scott Briggs’ recap. After losing their first two tilts at the Canadian Hockey League championship tournament, another setback would have sent Kootenay back to British Columbia.
The Cranbrook Daily Townsman’s recap. They scored three powerplay goals and needed overtime to clinch it, but they skated away a 5-4 win over the Saint John Sea Dogs on Tuesday.
The Globe and Mail’s recap. “It was frustrating watching them get a late goal” – Matt Fraser
Buzzing The Net’s recap. What is the big takeaway for Kootenay, knowing it is still alive thanks in small part to Gallant's lineup choices?
The Canadian Press’ recap. The reeling Kootenay Ice felt they deserved a break.
Rogers Sportsnet recap. The hockey Gods have an interesting way of balancing the MasterCard Memorial Cup.
The Sea Dogs website’s recap. The Saint John Sea Dogs suffered their first loss at the MasterCard Memorial Cup.
SAINT JOHN SCRATCHES
Saint John’s lineup changes were the big news entering yesterday’s game. The Dogs chose to rest several of their key players with a spot in Sunday’s championship game already guaranteed. From Buzzing The Net:
"The last two games Després has played he's had bronchitis pretty bad," Gallant said. "Tonight was an opportunity to give him a chance not to play. Kirkpatrick, he's got an injury from the Lewiston [semifinal] series. Guys like that, back-to-back games are tough. If we had played the game tomorrow night, you probably would have seen a full lineup, but we took care of business [Monday] night.Resting for the Sea Dogs was defenseman Simon Despres, forwards Michael Kirkpatrick and Danick Gauthier, and goaltender Jacob DeSerres didn’t dress at all.
"We can say all we want to the kids, but they know they're going to the final and we want to get them ready," Gallant said.
Along with them, Steven Antony missed is eighth straight game with a lower-body injury and Jason Cameron remains out and is recovering from a bruised kidney.
With the win, the Kootenay Ice will live to see another day. A loss last night would have pushed them to 0-3 at the tournament and given them a trip home.
The Ice lost their opening game 5-0 against the Owen Sound Attack and then fell 2-1 to the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors on Saturday.
Kootenay will have a day off to regroup and will face the loser of tonight’s Owen Sound – Mississauga game in Thursday’s tie-breaker. The winner of the tie-breaker moves on to the semifinals.
USING YOUR HEAD
We’ve seen Tomas Jurco pull off some incredible moves to score a goal. But last night, with 15 seconds left and the Sea Dogs down a goal, Jurco pulled a new one out of his bag of tricks.
Zack Phillips had possession of the puck and shot on goal only to hit Jurco in the neck area. The puck then bounced past Kootenay goaltender Nathan Lieuwen to tie at 4-4.
From the Canadian Press:
"It hurts a little bit but it's not too bad," said Jurco following the Sea Dogs 5-4 overtime loss on Tuesday night, and added that it was likely the strangest goal he's ever scored. "It was just a lucky goal, I don't know what else I can say about it."The goal was Jurco’s second of the game and fourth of the Memorial Cup. He now leads the tournament in goals (4) and points (5).
Jurco spoke to reporters with the lingering effects of his game-tying goal still showing thanks to a red mark on his neck just under his right ear.
"It didn't feel great but it wasn't bad," Jurco added. "I didn't worry about how it hurt because I had scored ... I think it's going to be a tough morning."
There is plenty of controversy surrounding the game winning goal as replays clearly showed that the play was offside.
The Daily Townsman explains:
The puck came up the boards and cleared the zone, but Max Reinhart charged forward and moved it up to Fraser. He, in turn, snapped a low shot that beat Mathieu Corbeil-Theriault.Apparently, there was a stick that blocked the linesman’s view of the play.
It’s the second time this tournament that a game-winning goal has been scored on a botched offside call. The Sea Dogs’ game-winner against Mississauga in the opener came on a missed offside.
"The game's fast and it's hard for (officials) to see every play. It's one of those bounces that happens in every game," said Zack Phillips to the Townsman.
JURCO CHANGES NAME
According to this highlight package that can be found on the Memorial Cup website, Tomas Jurco is going by Milan Jurco nowadays.
OUTSHOT BIG TIME
It was a rare sight to behold on Wednesday night at the Hershey Centre as the Sea Dogs were outshot 45-23. Saint John is rarely outshot and we are going to guess that this was the largest margin they have been all year.
The Dogs only had 12 shots through two periods while the Ice had 32.
Kootenay finally got their power play going and went 3-for-6 on the night. Their big guns were finally connecting after only scoring one goal in their first two games.
Although the Ice were good on the man advantage, the Dogs were also with their best defenseman Simon Despres and two solid defensive-forwards in Danick Gauthier and Michael Kirkpatrick.
It was Saint John’s first loss since Game Five of the President’s Cup final… four of the Sea Dogs’ last six games have gone to overtime… Nick Kypreos sucks… Kevin King was a -3 for the Ice… Joey Leach almost had his leg blown off on an Eric Gelinas point shot but would stay in the game… Mathieu Corbeil was solid in goal and faced 45 shots. It was his first start since Game Four of the semifinals in Lewiston… Jacob Edwards was Corbeil's backup... to relive the match, check out the SN Live Blog Replay.
OPEN ICE HOCKEY RECAP
The Sea Dogs play in the championship game on Sunday at 8:00 pm. The team they will play has yet to be determined.
Photo Credits: CHL Imgaes, Twitter, CHL Images